Supported by sponsorship from ARM, we are embarking on a new project to develop educational resources for Year 7 pupils (age 11 - 12 years old), and we want you to be a part of that project. Our aim is to create a resources pack for teachers and parents which will be free to download and use.
The first stage of the project is to talk to teachers, parents, educators, science communicators and STEM experts in order to define the scope of the project, to work out what sort of materials are actually needed and how they support the National Curriculum, eg:
There’s a lot more to discuss than that, obviously, and I’m very keen to hear from different perspectives on all these and related issues.
At the moment, I’m imagining that the resources pack could cover:
- Information on women in STEM who can act as role models, both individuals and teams
- Resources for studying STEM subjects, particularly ones suitable for girls or which are gender neutral
- Information on gender literacy, including marketing and stereotypes
- Suggestions on how to use after school activities to support girls interested in STEM
But this list is very much open to discussion, as everything is.
What can you do?
If you’re interested in supporting this project, then please do get involved! Some of the questions I’d like to discuss include:
- What sort of materials would be most useful to teachers? Are we talking lesson plans? Profiles of women in STEM? Lists of online STEM resources? All of the above?
- How can we support the National Curriculum? I don’t want to produce materials that are only useful once a year on Ada Lovelace Day, but something which supports year round teaching.
- Can we create a set of guidelines for assessing whether an online teaching resource supports girls in STEM? For example, does it challenge or support existing gender stereotypes?
It would be great if teachers and educators would be willing to share examples of great teaching materials that they would like to see more of, for example, lesson plans, activities, and worksheets. It would also be incredibly useful if people could share links to resources that already exist which might be relevant. We have no desire to reinvent the wheel, so want to compile a great list of online resources that support our mission of encouraging girls to consider STEM subjects.
And, as with any such project, there’s bound to be stuff we haven’t thought about that others can point out to us. We’re incredibly interested to hear from you, so please do get involved! And remember to encourage friends and colleagues to get involved too.
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Hello! #include is a group of teachers, academics and industry professionals who promote inclusion in Computing. We are running a resource hack in April for a KS3 Wikibook, which sounds very similar. Perhaps you would like to send some people along to get some ideas and/or to see if we could work together at all? It won't let me put a link in my post as I am new but have a look @casinclude on Twitter for more info.
Hi. This sounds like a great opportunity. What's the intended scope of the resources pack, computing specifically or STEM more generally (or something else)? Or is this question itself up for discussion? Thanks.
At the moment, we're looking at STEM more generally, and year 7, but other than that, we're open to suggestions!
Link for CASInclude: http://www.casinclude.org.uk/
Hi Codeboom, it does sound like there's an degree of overlap between what we're doing, and I'd be very happy to know more about how we could support you and you us! I would love to meet with you, but unfortunately, I live in the US at the moment which makes things a little harder. Perhaps, though, you could explain a bit more here about what you're doing and how that might feed into this project. I'd certainly be grateful if you could help us spread the word about this project and help us get more people involved!
Maria Popova has a great list of picture books (therefore mostly for younger kids) about inspiring scientists, artists and so on. They included stories about Marie Curie, Jane Goodall and Maria Merian, among others: http://www.brainpickings.org/2015/04/13/picture-book-biographies/
Tom Armitage, an erstwhile colleague of mine, has an interesting BBC R4 programme on tech literacy. It includes quite a lot on encouraging girls into computing, including a mention of the Stemettes (who, I'm ashamed to say, were new to me: http://www.stemettes.org/). There's also a nice quote from the founder just after the 14-min mark: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b05qgcgs
Thanks for those links, Timo!