Children’s drawings of the World of Work often reveal significant gender stereotyping (Ref1, Ref2) . STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) jobs are no exception and therefore from the SRUK’s Wo/Men Committee, we present the Children’s Workshop ‘Awakening Vocations in STEM‘. The aim is to help to break down gender stereotypes and preconceptions, while children experience the joy of Science. The workshop will be developed in Primary Schools in Spain and United Kingdom during the academic year 2018-2019.
The workshop will consist of three activities:
- Estimation of children’s gender-based concept of a scientist
- Hands-on scientific activity
- Creation of a Paper Doll scientist model
To estimate the current children’s gender-based concept of a scientist, we will ask children aged between 5 and 12 to draw a scientist. Drawings will be collected and gender(s) depicted in the drawings will be identified using common signifiers.
After that, children, led by their teacher, will enjoy a hands-on scientific activity whilst watching a previously recorded experiment conducted by a female SRUK member.
A few days after, children will create their Paper Doll Scientist. We will provide a template and a set of printable scientific accessories. After dressing their favorite scientist, they will name their model, allowing us to guess the gender.
This activity will allow us 1) to assess the stereotypes that pupils have regarding scientists and 2) to study if a short exposure to a female role model can change the initial stereotype. After the activity, we will be able to answer the following questions:
- Will female pupils be more likely to dress and/or name their scientists as female scientists?
- Have we weakened a pre-existing gender stereotype?
Primary Schools´ teachers-parents: would you like to collaborate with us?
If you are currently working in a primary school and you would be interested in bringing this experience to your own pupils, please contact us by email at [email protected] using the subject “Awakening Vocations in STEM”. Join us! You are welcome.
If you would like to see this activity being run in your children’s primary school, please contact us giving the name of your contact in your children’s school and we will explain the project in greater detail and enquire if they would be interested to participate. Do not hesitate to send us the info to [email protected] using the subject “Despertando vocacione en STEM
How to participate in this initiative being a SRUK member?
We are currently seeking SRUK female volunteers who would like to join us in this project. If you would like to be a role model for pupils in Primary School (5-12 years-old), you can run and record an easy experiment from within your field with a similar format of the example below. The video should last around 10 minutes and the material used should be available in any non-specialised shop.
Contact us in [email protected] and use “Awakening Vocations in STEM” as a subject for any questions you might have or any help you might request. We shall be delighted to help!!