Moms as Mentors™ Encourages STEM Exploration for Young Girls

December 04, 2015

A mom and daughter engage in a STEM activity.

“Build Bridges! 2” helped moms and adults become effective STEM mentors.

The Simmons Institute for Leadership and Change (SILC) recently hosted another Moms as Mentors™ event, “Build Bridges! 2,” that focused on lessons in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM). Fourteen pairs of adults and girls in grades K-3 came to campus, Nov. 14, to participate in a valuable afternoon of learning and sharing positive experiences with STEM.

One of the activities the pairs were tasked with was designing and building something that could carry a ping-pong ball from the top of a zip line string to the bottom. As they tried to make the ball travel quickly and then slowly, they learned about friction and the role it plays in the speed of travel. Adults and girls also learned about adaptation and habitats when they designed a tool to act like the beak of a bird, then used it in a race to collect as much “food” (paper clips, rubber bands, toothpicks, etc.) as possible from a pretend habitat in the room.

“These kinds of structured activities provide opportunities for moms and important adults in girls’ lives to strengthen their relationship while having fun, communicating, and having positive experiences with STEM,” said SILC Director Diane Hammer.

Caitlyn Normand ’15, a Moms as Mentors™ volunteer, and other alumnae and staff returned to Simmons to participate in the science and engineering fun.

This is the fourth SILC-hosted Moms as Mentors™ event, following other STEM-focused and financial empowerment themed events.

Simmons is proud to host this important program, which reinforces the work of the College to educate women and girls for leadership and success. The next event will take place in April 2016. 

(Photo credit: Diane Hammer)