Girls of all ages like math and science to be useful and relevant to their everyday lives. A college course on how to take apart a computer and put it back together attracted 300 male students and no young women
Similarly, math problems on a computer program called Animal Watch engaged girls' interest because calculations involved saving endangered animal species from extinction. Most girls
Not all girls are alike. Some already know they like math and science and just need connections made and barriers reduced. Some have yet to discover that math, science and technology are for girls. For them, it's important to arrange for exposure to role models they can look up to (the younger, the better), who convey how "cool" it is to do science
This article, adapted from the National Science Foundation publication New Formulas for America's Workforce: Girls in Science and Engineering was first published in the Style Section of the Washington Post, Tuesday, January 6, 2004, Page C09. Copyright (c) 2004 by Pat McNees.