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Fantastic STEM News in December at 
Girls STEM Collaborative (GSGSC)
Seasons Greetings! The Garden State Girls STEM Collaborative is the New Jersey initiative of the National Girls Collaborative Project, a program focused on providing high quality STEM activities to girls. Our primary goal is to strengthen the capacity of girl-serving STEM programs to effectively reach and serve underrepresented girls in STEM by sharing promising practice research and program models, outcomes, products and by connecting formal and informal educators, business and industry in order to maximize the resources that can positively influence our girls. 
As always, this newsletter is for you as members of the Collaborative. It can serve as a forum to promote events and to highlight the good work that you all do, so please let me know what is going on so we can include your program in upcoming issues.
In this issue:
Mike MacEwan
Collaborative Lead, Garden State Girls STEM Collaborative
Who Says Math Has to Be Boring?



American students are bored by math, science and engineering. They buy smartphones and tablets by the millions but don't pursue the skills necessary to build them. Engineers and physicists are often portrayed as clueless geeks on television, and despite the high pay and the importance of such jobs to the country's future, the vast majority of high school graduates don't want to go after them.


Nearly 90 percent of high school graduates say they're not interested in a career or a college major involving science, technology, engineering or math, known collectively as STEM, according to a survey of more than a million students who take the ACT test. The number of students who want to pursue engineering or computer science jobs is actually falling, precipitously, at just the moment when the need for those workers is soaring. (Within five years, there will be 2.4 million STEM job openings.)


One of the biggest reasons for that lack of interest is that students have been turned off to the subjects as they move from kindergarten to high school. Many are being taught by teachers who have no particular expertise in the subjects. They are following outdated curriculums and textbooks. They become convinced they're "no good at math," that math and science are only for nerds, and fall behind.


That's because the American system of teaching these subjects is broken. For all the reform campaigns over the years, most schools continue to teach math and science in an off-putting way that appeals only to the most fervent students. The mathematical sequence has changed little since the Sputnik era: arithmetic, pre-algebra, algebra, geometry, trigonometry and, for only 17 percent of students, calculus. Science is generally limited to the familiar trinity of biology, chemistry, physics and, occasionally, earth science.1


To read the rest of this informative piece by the New York Times Editorial Board, please click here.


1 The New York Times Editorial Board. (2013). Who Says Math Has to Be Boring? The New York Times. Retrieved from


LEGO Children's Fund: Grant Submission Schedule  


The LEGO Group is committed to helping children develop their creativity and learning skills through constructive play.  The LEGO Children's Fund extends this commitment to local and national organizations that support innovative projects and programming to cultivate and celebrate a child's exploration of personal creativity and creative problem-solving in all forms including STEM.  Our goal is to prepare the next generation - the builders of tomorrow - for a lifetime of creative learning and innovative thinking. 


The LEGO Children's Fund will provide grants quarterly. Applicants are invited to submit proposals anytime throughout the year.  However, to ensure that a request is considered for a particular trustee meeting, proposals must be received by the following dates:


For Grants Awarded In:
Eligibility Quiz Time Period:
Application Deadline
JuneMar. 1 - Mar 28**April 15
SeptemberJune 1 - June 28**July 15
DecemberSept. 1 - Sept. 28**October 15
MarchDec. 1 - Dec. 28**January 15

 ** Due to the overwhelming number of eligibility quizzes we receive, we have found it necessary to establish a cutoff to our quizzes. The cutoff will be the date listed or when our quota has been reached (whichever occurs first.)


Take Advantage of this Valuable FREE Resource!
Is your program listed?
The Online Program Directory lists organizations and programs that focus on motivating girls to pursue STEM careers. The purpose of the directory is to help organizations and individuals network, share resources, and collaborate on STEM-related projects for girls. 

When you sign up for the Program Directory, you will enter your program description, resources available within your organization, program and/or organizational needs, and contact information.

The Directory contains program descriptions, resources available within each organization, program and/or organization needs, and contact information. Submitted entries undergo review and verification prior to publication.


Click here to register your STEM program
Enter to win a complete set of books in the SCIENTISTS IN THE FIELD series!


Michael MacEwan 
Collaborative Lead  
Garden State Girls STEM Collaborative 
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