Find Joy. Seek Truth. Be Kind.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Girls and STEM (or STEAM, depending ...)

STEM=Science Technology Engineering Math
STEAM= Science Technology Engineering Art Math

When Lego Kid was touring  local high school (more on that later!) we ran into an old acquaintance touring it with her daughter.  We've since been conversing about what middle school seems to do to smart girls, especially smart techy girls.  Her daughter, who had previously been good at math and excited about science and tech, has come to believe that it's not cool for a girl to be into those things.  This isn't the only mom I've heard this from, just the most recent.

So, putting the hive brain to use (best use of FB ever!) we've come up with some resources that might help encourage girls to embrace their power and brains, to stay engaged with math and science, and to kick those cultural expectations into the dust.  (and I could blather on about that too. GRRRR)

We found a list of girl empowering movies, a list of math fiction, and non-fiction books  by Danica McKellar, like Kiss My Math and Hot X.  PBS has a youtube series called Math Club, it works to be inclusive and break down stereotypes.   Vi Hart is always brilliant, combining math and performance art into amazing videos.
Then there are organizations that encourage girls in STEM and organizations that work to teach empowerment like Girls on Ice.  Locally CSU has Pretty Brainy which has a workshop coming up this Feb. (deadline soon, scholarships available).

I discovered Rejected Princesses a while back, and while it's not generally about math or tech, it is about women so powerful (and sometimes so grim) that Disney wouldn't touch them.
And really, isn't that what this is about?  Powerful women are threatening to the current power structure.  We're conditioned to suppress our own power so that no one else needs to bother.
Tell you what, if we're going to be suppressed, let's at least make the suppressors do the work, eh?

Damn.  I adore my boys, but sometimes I really want a daughter.  I've spent their lives teaching my sons to be thoughtful, gentle, and kind.
I want a girl to teach to kick some ass.

Monday, January 12, 2015

2015 books - lost to busyness

 Sigh... at some point, late spring or early summer last year, I stopped keeping track of the books I was reading.  I'm sorry I did that.  Not because you care what I read.  Not because I care about you knowing what I read. But because I like to look back at them sometimes and see what I've read, and remember the books.  I honestly don't always remember I've read something until I pick it up and start it again, and notice... "hmmm.. this seems familiar".

It's been fun looking back at my book lists to see what kind of reading kicks I was one.   Supernatural Romance might zoom into neurobiology which could bump up against an Austin streak.

Part of not recording books is not reading much, not having time, being a taxi cab mom.  Part of it is not just keeping track.

Ah well, as I tell my kids, you can always start again tomorrow, or today, as the case may be.

So, here are two books I read sometime in the summer of 2015.  :-p

Following the Curve of Time, by Cathy Converse
The Einstein Enigma, by Jose Rodrigues dos Santos