Beware of myths. Many parents think of their daughters as being able to do anything except math and science. Unfortunately, this not only limits their daughter's options for the future, it also damages the nation's ability to compete in these fields.
What about genes? Are boys biologically superior in math and science? Research has shown that there is no such thing as a male math gene. Furthermore, the National Research Council found almost no difference in performance between male and female students who have taken equal advantage of similar opportunities to study mathematics. Many girls are naturally skilled in math and science. Your daughter may be one of them.
Myths that girls need to overcome:
Encouragement is the key Parental encouragement and support are key factors in making math and science careers viable options for girls of today. In most schools, there are two key decision-making points:
1. In eighth grade, when most students decide whether to take Algebra I the following year.
2. In eleventh-grade, when most stop taking additional math classes when the basic math requirements have been met. Parents can get a head start by making math fun at an early age. Some suggestions:
There is a need to evaluate existing math and science programs. When school offer math and science programs, this doesn't necessarily mean that these courses are going to be successful in encouraging more girls to consider math and science careers. Research indicates that girls tend to show more interest in math and science when these courses:
School math and science programs also need to provide opportunities for young women to talk with scientists and engineers about their work. When students interact with these professionals, they learn more about career choices.
Encourage girls to study Basic Science (Physics, Chemistry, Biology), Mathematics, and Engineering (STEM)
The United States is in need of students in the basic sciences. Open your child's eyes to careers in physics, chemistry, biology, math, and engineering.
Click, Read and Learn about Girls and Women in Physics and STEM:
Video/Youtube Resources for Girls Interested in Physics