Change the message. Change her world.
"Science is not for girls." That's the wrong message for our girls to hear. We know that inside every girl is a scientist, but over time, girls pick up on societal cues that tell them that science is not for them - it's for boys. This message is reinforced in the toy aisle, where chemistry and physics kits are marketed to boys and pseudoscience "spa" kits are marketed to girls.
Girls lose confidence. And miss opportunities.
In 4th grade, most girls say they like science. But by 8th grade this number drops dramatically as girls lose confidence in their ability to do science. This trend continues beyond school. Although women make up 48% of the total workforce, they make up only 24% of science jobs.
Science is for girls.
At Yellow Scope, we want to build girls' confidence in science before they fall off the curve. Research shows that girls learn best when they can approach projects in a creative and open-ended way. That's why we designed our kits to engage both the scientific and creative minds of girls. The experiments are rigorous, and there is plenty of room for girls to draw their observations and doodle their ideas in their very own lab notebook.
STEM and the leaky pipeline.
STEM is the acronym for science, technology, engineering, and math. There has been a lot of talk about the gender imbalance in STEM and the "leaky pipeline" - a term used to describe the loss of girls and women at every step along the path to STEM careers. We want to fix the leak early, while girls are still confident and enthusiastic about science.
- is targeted for girls 8 - 12 years old, when interest in science is most vulnerable
- aligns with Next Generation Science Standards
- includes supplies for dozens of experiments
- Molecules and molecular motion
- Chemical reactions
- Temperature in chemistry
Included in the kit:
- Lab notebook (which is really a lot more than just a lab notebook...) It's a sketch pad - reference guide - doodle book - and lab safety & instruction manual. In a nutshell, it's a place to learn, experiment, wonder, design, and create. And it's really cool. (See photos below.)
- Safety goggles
- 3 Beakers
- Stirring rod
- Citric acid
- Sodium bicarbonate
- Colored pencils
- Pencil sharpener
- Red, yellow, and blue colored dye
- Red, yellow, and blue citric acid/sodium bicarbonate tablets
- Mini pencil with eraser and logo
- Chalk cloth/lab mat (phthalate-free)
- Collectible chemistry badge
Real science girls doing real science:
What's Currently on the Market?
We dare you to Google "science kits for girls" images. Go ahead, open another window and do it. We did this the other night, and here's what came up:
There are a couple of good kits that come up in the search -- including Roominate, which is a really great toy (go Alice and Bettina!) And we're really excited that our kit showed up. However, take a look at the overwhelming majority of the science kits that are targeted specifically at girls. This is what the toy aisle offers our daughters, nieces, granddaughters, and friends. The world may tell girls that they can be anything and do anything. But the real message is that they should focus on their appearances, and that rigorous science is not for them.
Reasons to support us on Kickstarter today:
- You will be the first to own the Foundation Chemistry kit. Our product is unique; there are no products currently on the market like this.
- You will send the message that girls can do anything - especially real science.
- You will help get real science into the hands of your daughter/niece/granddaughter/friend.
- You will help fix the leaky pipeline, so girls in STEM will become women in STEM.
- Kickstarter perks! Need we say more?
- We ask for your pledge so that we can get volume discounts, finish up the graphic design for the lab notebook, and cover start-up printing costs.
- If this really takes off, your pledges will help start us on the path of a whole line of science kits for girls. After our Foundation Chemistry Kit, we plan to develop a series of kits in different subject areas - Physics, Biology, Earth Science, Coding, and more. For each subject area, we will create several kits on different topics, and at different price points. As a backer, you will receive exclusive updates on our new products.
- If you believe in our mission, and you want to change her world, please share this on Facebook using the convenient button just below our video at the top.
- And please tweet this to the world. (Handy hashtags are #girlsinSTEM #womeninSTEM #STEM #MakerEd #LikeAGirl and maybe you could throw in #GirlPower)
- Thank you for considering our project!
Yellow Scope in the News:
- "The Six Companies in the Newest PDX Startup Challenge Class" - by Taylor Soper - GeekWire
- "Startup PDX Challenge" - by Mike Rogoway - The Oregonian
- "Startup PDX's Finalists" - by Malia Spencer and Andy Giegerich - Portland Business Journal
- "Six New Upstarts" - by Joseph Gallivan - Portland Tribune
- "Yellow Scope Gets Young Girls Hooked on Science Early" - by Karina Skauge - GoLocalPDX
- "Shattering Science Stereotypes" - by Jon Bell - Drive the District Powered by General Motors.
A Special Shout Out to:
- Portland Development Commission for the Startup PDX Challenge Grant
MercyCorps Northwest for their support of small businesses by offering great business classes and resources
Debbie Sterling for blazing the trail in the girls' toy aisle
- Alex Marler for her amazing design work
- Themios Carabas, Jon & Brendan Hays, and Paige West for getting our website up and running
- Lindsay Nelson and Theme Dragon for creating our animated video
- Bill Horton for his business acumen
- Laurie Price for her support and advice for our mission-driven startup
- Michael Schmitt for his photography and cinematography
- Amy Hamden, party-planner extraordinaire at Parker+Paige Events, for her creative brilliance
- Jeff Lovinger for his legal advice and for writing up our many Yellow Scope contracts
- A pre-emptive thank you to Chip McCollum for delivering some of the Lablandia Chemistry Kits by bike
Additional thanks to other special contributors:
Alameda Science Team, Kirsten Allen, Jef Atwood, Adeline Backer, Marnie Backer, Diana Bianco, Veronica Bianco, Christine Boyd, Matt Compton, Maximum Compton, McKenzie Compton, Kristina Day, Amy Donohue, Lena Dutta, Manju Dutta, Pat Farley, Dave Fierek, Diane Fleck, Jennifer Heilbronner, Mike Heilbronner, Kathy King, RJ Kirkland, Ann Kollrack, Billy Lau, Alice Lovinger, Audrey Lovinger, Darcy Lovinger, Sharon Lovinger, Adam McCollum, Hannah McCollum, Michaela McCollum, Alison Mollet, Dave Mollet, Katie Morrison, Katie O'Dell, Reed Odette, Erica Perez, Donnette Sands, Kurt Sands, Greg Shaw, Leah Starr, and Trupp HR.
*** Sorry, no shipping outside of the U.S. and Canada at this time. Kits will be delivered by March 2015. ***
Risks and challenges
Potential hurdles for us relate mostly to the fact that we are sourcing a large number of items from many different suppliers. We've tried to source as many things as possible from local and domestic suppliers, but some things we've had to find internationally. There could be possible supply delays due to problems with production and/or shipping. To deal with this, we have found a primary AND secondary source for every item in the kit. And we have the option of expedited shipping on all items except one. We've preordered that item so that we would have some on hand. We are working with the manufacturer to ensure that there will be no delays, but in the event that there are, we've found that particular item at a different supplier, but at a much greater cost. If we need to, we will purchase it at the higher cost and learn from our mistake. Thanks for considering our project!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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