Girls in Science (CSC offerings)

I just noticed the program offerings from Carnegie Science Center making the rounds on social media:

CSC program offering

I’ve heard lots of thoughts on this, from girls just aren’t interested in science to the leaders aren’t doing enough.  I do know anecdotally that most of my friends are interested in science, went on to pursue degrees in science and would have jumped at the chance to take the boy classes. They also: barely wear makeup, sign their kids up for enrichment when they can and try to help other kids be more involved. So I have no answer as far as the general populace.

In a past life I headed up a robotics team.  Our first team was 2 girls and 3 boys.  Not equal, but it was an odd number.  That being said my son was one of the boys so if you take him out of the equation the kids were equal as far as gender. Those kids are now 21 and they were 8 at the time, so it’s been a long time!  They have each went on to college and are doing great.  I know I didn’t make an effort to get girls at the time, everything just fell into place.

I have no solutions, but I do know something has to be done. As you look at the makeup of science classes in current colleges they are overwhelming male.  How do you change a stereotype – especially when barbie is there to remind us that ‘Math is Tough’.  Any suggestions?


Carnegie Science Center defends their decision –

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2013 KY FIRST LEGO League Championship Results

Click on this link to see the complete list of the team awards from the 2013 KY-FLL State Championships, along with the judges’ comments. Congrats to all the participants. YOU ARE ALL WINNERS even if the judges were not able to single you out for a specific award.
– Keith Lancaster

KY FIRST LEGO League Facebook group
More Pictures and Information are available

Congratulations to All the Teams!


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Smart PJs

The morning news just showed smart PJs – pajamas for bedtime stories.  The $25 Smart PJ’s,which are available in pink and blue, have 47 colorful dot patterns that work with an app. When a camera on a tablet or phone is held over the dots, the app will launch an interactive bedtime story or show other types of educational content, including photos of animals or objects.

From what I can tell they use technology like QR codes to allow your smart phone to scan the dots on the pajamas and pull up information.  – The QR Code to the left pulls up Googles web site but could easily be set up to pull up any page that I would have liked.  To create your own QR Code you can use the website – –  QR Codes can be included on business cards, screen printed on shirts, or even shown with a projector and scanned with your smart phone.

The real question though is should kids be taking a smart phone to bed and pulling up their own bedtime stories?  In some ways this is great, kids get the fun of playing with technology and improve their reading – but they are missing out on that family time that is so important.


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Cell Phones: Too Young?

How young is too young?

My kids got cell phones fairly early.  Not 2 years old, but they were not yet in middle school.

Picture of a Cell Phone

Picture of a Cell Phone (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When we got the each child a cell phone it seemed like a great idea.  We have since gotten rid of our land line making it more important in my mind for the kids to have a way to keep in touch when they are home along.  Now with a younger child I won’t hire a babysitter without a cellphone since we don’t have a phone in the house while we are out.

I remember with our oldest we broke down and got a phone when his class was taking field trips and he began doing more after school activities.  We sent the boys to a private school and they frequently got home late at night with no access to the school – there was also no bus transportation, so with a cell phone he was able to let us know about 30 minutes before they got back that they were almost home.  We lived about 30 minutes from the school so it worked out perfect!   There were frequently parents with phones that they could borrow, but this way I knew there was no question of being able to reach my child at any point.  As he became more involved in activities, his phone became more important to stay in touch.  I’ll admit I wasn’t too happy to get a text from upstairs asking for a sandwich, but it’s still nice to get a message once in a while that he’s still doing ok and thinking of me.  He moved away to a science and math school his Junior year of High School and his cell phone was his best way to stay in touch.

My middle son fought us on getting a phone.  He still hardly uses his phone and is currently 16.  He was just starting middle school when we got him a tracfone. Our thought was that if he lost it, we weren’t really out anything.  He used it rarely, but it did come in handy when he was on field trips.   Now that he is starting to drive I’m hoping he will at least remember to take his phone with him just in case he has a problem and needs it.

Our youngest doesn’t have a cell phone but he does know how to use it. He can do everything from talk to his brothers to play games on our phones.  I can’t see getting him his own yet, but at the point that he starts going out on playdates, field trips, and gets to the point that he can stay home alone I do feel it might be a necessity.

What are the most important reasons to get a child a cellphone?

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FREE RobotC ONLINE Classes

Starting Monday, June 17th, our free online classes will begin for the Robotics Summer of Learning. The ROBOTC team will show you the best ways to get started using ROBOTC and answer your questions LIVE. The goals for these classes is to support you, our users, and help you earn a ROBOTC certification!

The classes and Q&A sessions will take place throughout the summer on WebEx at the times listed below. The length of the class will be based on how many questions we need to answer.

Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays at 11:00am EDT

Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays at 12:00pm EDT

**Classes will be recorded and posted online after each session.**


  Full Information Here






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