STEM program celebrates International Day of the Girl


MONTOURSVILLE, LYCOMING COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU)- It’s International Day of the Girl, with a worldwide enthusiasm for girls to reach their goals and full potential.

One way to do that is with the help of STEM programs inside of the classroom.

Eyewitness News spoke with students and faculty at Donald E. Schick Elementary School who say the STEM program will help girls of all ages advance in the real world.

“Girls can do anything they put their minds to,” says Lisa Novotny, a first grade teacher.

The goal of the day is to shine a light on girls, and to highlight and discuss all of the opportunities for girls everywhere.

“A lot of people say like, ‘oh, only boys will be engineers,’ so if girls learn about it then they can grow up to be an engineer also,” says Julie Ellis, a fifth grade student.

This can all be taught in the iPlay lab, which is centered around STEM. Students are getting hands on lessons in the lab, which they’ll be able to take with them outside of the classroom.

“We do different stuff with technology, so we do like the ‘makey makey’s’ which is like different circuits, and then there’s a lot of other technology-based stuff,” says Ellis.

Proving that girls can be seen as equals.

“People think that a lot of boys are the only ones to do it but I’m sure a lot of girls can do it,” says Fiona Baker, a fifth grade student.

The aim of the STEM lab is to help the students realize there’s more to education that goes beyond the textbook, with activities geared toward everyone.

“I think sometimes a lot of the toy industries pigeonholes girls and boys into certain types of toys and here in our iPlay lab, we have Legos and building blocks, and the girls are just as interested in them as boys,” says Kimberly Hoffman, a kindergarten teacher.

“Sometimes you don’t even know you’re learning as you play fun games like that,” says Baker.

“Science and math and engineering, they’re so important,” says Novotny. “There’s so many jobs out there that we don’t even know that are available and girls can just take it and run with it.”

The international holiday is a 100% youth-led movement instilling the idea that education is the most powerful weapon in order to change the world, and that’s exactly what these girls are hoping to do.

“When I grow up I want to be a teacher,” says Ellis.

International Day of the Girl began in 2011 and leaders identify it as a day of national action.

Throughout the day, girls take over the positions of over 600 leaders in 60 countries in a statement of their power and potential.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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