How can parents and families support girls’ GEMS experience and ongoing curiosity about STEM?
Families play an important role in the formation of girls’ STEM interest, identity, and involvement. Families that show interest in STEM and proactively support the engagement of their daughters with STEM are more likely to have daughters who like science and who think of themselves as people who can do science.
What Parents and Guardians Can Do To Encourage Girls in STEM — suggestions from Laura Reasoner Jones, GEMS Founder
The links below offer general suggestions about how you can support your daughter’s STEM interests now that she’s been involved in GEMS. Links in the other sections of the GEMS Parent Toolkit offer:
- activities you can do at home together
- suggestions on how to find STEM activities and programs in your community
- places to find STEM role models
- links for exploring STEM careers.
What Parents and Guardians Can Do to Encourage Girls in STEM
- Tips for Encouraging Girls in STEM—general suggestions from PBS Kids for parents
- Top 10 Ways Families Can Encourage Girls’ In Computing—tips from National Center for Women & Information Technology
- Stimulating Interest in STEM for Girls—how to help girls get on their way to a coding career
- Science: It’s a Family Affair—parent guide to fostering children’s interest in science from Techbridge
- Million Girls Moonshot Workshops for Parents—learn best practices in helping parents better support their children’s STEM learning.
- Five Ways Parents Can Support STEM Learning — good tips for parents and other interested adults
Tips for Parents About How to Encourage Girls in STEM
One easy way to support your daughter’s GEMS experience is to ask her questions about what she is doing in GEMS and what she is learning. GEMS has reflection cards that can help facilitate this valuable process.
As important, ask your girl to give you a demonstration of what she’s been doing and explain how it works.
If she has a take-home activity or you want to try one of the suggested activities in this Parent Toolkit:
- See if she can do it on her own and then share the results.
- If she needs help, work with her in a way that allows her to take ownership and do as much of it on her own as she can while you provide coaching and encouragement from the side.
- Invite questions and praise efforts to try new things.
- Let her make mistakes and take risks and even experience failure. It’s all part of the STEM process!