Family Scholar House in conjunction with the Kentucky Science Center utilized their Girls RISEnet mini-grant to support two actvities: a science and engineering workshop for daughters of single parents and support for 13 young women to attend a week-long summer camp at the science center. The workshop taught the girls and parents about electricity, electrical currents, architecture and roller coaster design. The girls who attended the summer camp, ages 5 to 11 years old, spent an entire week learning about engineering, mathematics, chemistry, design, and problem-solving skills.
Family Scholar House is a nonprofit organization located in Louisville, KY whose mission is to end the cycle of poverty by giving single-parent students the support they need to earn a four-year college degree.
Black Girls Code It's All About Robots summer camp, supported by a Girls RISEnet mini-grant, was held on August 6 - August 10 at University of San Francisco, San Francisco CA. It’s All About Robots was the first class in our summer session and targeted girls ages 7-13. During this summer camp the students learned about robotics and computer programming using the Arduino Lilypad devices and Lego Mindstorms®. The program included visits to the Computer History Museum in Mountainview, CA where students tour the museum galleries and did extensive research session with docents in the robotics exhibit.
The program participants also visited IBM Almaden research facility in San Jose, CA. During this visit the girls toured the facility and participated in a Mindstorms workshop and science exhibition/demonstration with IBM personnel. The day culminated with a dry-ice experiment followed by an ice-cream social which was enjoyed by all.
The final site visit held during the workshop included a visit to the NASA Ames Research Center in San Jose, CA. During the visit the girls learned about the Mars Curiosity Rover mission which was an extensive focus of our workshop since the launch occurred the week of our camp. A major focus of our workshop included research on the Curiosity Mission and involved STEM exercises on robotics and space exploration.
In July 2012, staff from Neriah's House, utilized a Girls RISEnet mini-grant to support "STEM Project," a program for girls ages 10 and up to hands-on STEM programs and STEM careers via three experiences:
During their trip to the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago, where girls were able to observe and participate in hands-on activities including dissecting cow's eyes and experimenting with chemical reactions.
At the terrarium workshop, participants learned about the principles of creating balanced ecosystems, and used these principles to build terrariums out of recycled bottles.
Finally, at the technology workshop, girls created movies using desktop software, followed by counseling on potential STEM careers.
Girl Scouts from A.M Jackson Math and Science Academy in East Saint Louis, Illinois participated in a unique program called "Breathe - a STEM journey" in April and May, 2012 supported by a Girls RISEnet mini-grant. Thirty girls completed the Girl Scout Leadership Journey "Breathe" by learning about green energy, interviewing experts in green roofs, automotive design and inspection and coming up with their own clean air inventions. The series, which lasted three weeks, culminated in a "Segways and Superconductors" program put on by the Saint Louis Science Center "Science Off Center" program.
Girls studied electricity, built a circuit and assembled flashlights. After learning about basic energy principles, they were introduced to green energy and nonpolluting transportation in a very entertaining way - a Segway ride!
Although apprehensive at first, girls really got into steering and experiencing the science of gyroscopes. Each girl gained confidence thanks to the expert instruction of Saint Louis Science Center staff. In addition to teaching the girls about this unique form of green transportation, people in the community stopped and watched the girls zooming around the school playground - even asking questions about the Segways, the Science Center and what the girls learned during their Breathe journey. Most of the girls had never ridden or even heard of Segways, but after this program all left with a new sense of power of engineering and their own abilities to make the world a better place.
With a Girls RISEnet Mini-Grant award, MOTHER.OF.SCIENCE hosted fun-filled weeks of hands-on exploration to 21 elementary school girls in Bloomington, IN. The Spring workshop series started with a kick-off at the local WonderLab Museum. The workshop helped the girls to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills as they worked in teams to investigate topics including polymer behavior in aquatic solutions, ultraviolet sensitive materials, and germ-detection solutions. Each week was marked with a new and exciting topic. A sample of which include the following: (1) In the "Cuddly, Friendly Germs" workshop, girls learned about germs, how they spread and observed where the germs were hiding on their hands! They took home their "germ models" as a key chain or zipper pull. This series included a reading of "Germs" and show of soft and "cuddly" replicas of not so cuddly real germs.
(2) In the "Sunshine on My Shoulder" workshop, girls designed colorful bracelets and conducted simple experiments to find out what made the "mystery beads" change color outdoors. They discovered that invisible rays of ultraviolet light caused the beads to change color. Girls also gave our mannequin hands a special manicure with UV nail polish. After discussing the harmful effects of too much sun on their skin, girls tested the effectiveness of sunscreen on UV beads. This series included readings of John Denver's "Sunshine on My Shoulder". (3) In the "Chalk" workshops, girls explored their own magic dinosaurs, made of a super-absorber polymer. When dinosaurs were placed in water, these reptiles expanded before their eyes. Girls observed the effect of removing the "super absorber" dinosaur from the water. This series included a reading of Bill Thomson's "Chalk".
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