Girl Scouts learn about STEM
Published 10:26 pm Saturday, October 11, 2014
Building telescopes, discovering the world of nanotechnology and programming robots were just a few of the activities on the agenda for more than 200 Girl Scouts on Sept. 27, during the fourth annual Science Alive, an event hosted by Norfolk State University to introduce girls to the world of science, technology, engineering and math.
During the full-day event, faculty and students at Norfolk State University led sessions that covered a wide range of topics in the STEM fields, including biology, geometry, atmospheric science and nursing.
Girl Scouts made tornados in a bottle while learning about atmospheric pressure, put together snap circuits for a lesson in electronics and engineering and looked at shells, barnacles and a jellyfish under the microscope during a biology session.
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Girl Scouts, along with the Norfolk State University volunteers, also participated in a traditional lunchtime dance party, and the girls had the chance to talk to the students about college life.
While the Girl Scouts were experimenting, parents had the opportunity to participate in workshops about preparing for college and receive training to facilitate Techbridge, a STEM kit that volunteers can use to introduce girls to a variety of topics in science and engineering.
Science Alive is designed to give girls the chance to explore and discover STEM in the supportive, all-girl environment of Girl Scouts, where girls feel more comfortable asking questions and trying new things.
Today, women hold only about 25 percent of STEM careers, and Girl Scouts are working to fill the gap by engaging girls in opportunities to learn from female STEM leaders, who inspire girls to envision themselves in similar careers. Science Alive is a fun and informal way for girls to work as part of a team to become resourceful problem solvers and build leadership skills.
Girl Scouts of the Colonial Coast and the local chapter of the Society of Women Engineers will be presenting a workshop for girls in fourth and fifth grades Nov. 1 at Old Dominion University. The Girl Scouts are also partnering with the Virginia Living Museum to host an evening of science and exploration Dec. 6 at the museum for girls from kindergarten through 12th grade. These STEM opportunities are open to all girls, whether or not they are currently registered as a member of Girl Scouts.