Women Studies 320

Archive for May, 2013

Gender Lens research

Throughout my research on the GoldieBlox toy, I have learned a great deal about our solution to getting more women in STEM fields. GoldieBlox seems to be hitting the nail on the head as it targets young girls, at the same age as gender differentiation really starts to occur. Throughout this course I have learned a lot about the problem of a lack of female presence in STEM fields, but not much about actually reversing the cycle. Targeting young children seems to be like a very effective way to begin. Providing them with the tools they need to become interested in science, math or engineering will ultimately lead to more women going into those fields and having more and more female role models, which is great!   I also learned how to explore different research databases, besides the basic library search for articles. This proved to be very helpful considering I was struggling to find many articles related to this fascinating new toy.

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Beginning research for the Gender Lens project

I am so excited to be starting my Gender Lens research project on Goldie Blox. This is a brand new product that was designed in an effort to get girls more interested in engineering. I have been successful in learning about the product itself. Right away I noticed that it seems to be very gender neutral, especially when compared to traditional toys marketed to girls. There is a variety of color, rather than being blasted by pink and purple.  So far, my problems align with this being such a new product. Because of this, there is not a lot of research on the product. I will have to be resourceful when it comes to finding my research, such as by comparing the product to research on previous female oriented products. I haven’t been able to find a single scholarly journal so far. I initiated a chat with 24/7 librarians. After just a few questions, “Abby” was able to direct me to a database where it took me only a few seconds to find articles!! Thank you, Abby! I was able to find a lot of articles and have provided many links to these under “links Gender Lens Project: GoldieBlox”.

Pictures and Legos!

Well, after a very late evening, I have finished the cultural research project. It seems not very long ago that I thought I would never be able to get it done! However, the time has come and now I get to talk about it being complete and moving onto the next phase of the class. I found it to be fairly simple to insert images into my blog. I think the only hangup I had was trying to find the copyright symbol, so I just wrote it out. I also had to do some adjusting with sizes as well. However, Los Alamos National Laboratory apparently has some very strict copyright guidelines because there was no way to copy my graphs needed for the “technology” section. I am pretty tech-savvy and was able to get them into a word document, but no matter what I did, the image would not copy correctly onto my blog. It was the only place I could find related graphs as well, so hopefully that won’t ding me too horribly.

Legos, now we get to talk about legos! I used legos all the time! I had a pink and purple lego house with a “glass” (ok, so it was plastic) elevator in it and all sorts of lego accessories. My brother had a lego castle! Yes, I know what you’re thinking…talk about gendered toys! The only part about them that wasn’t gendered was the fact that my brother and I played with both of them, equally. I think I loved that castle as much as my fancy lego mansion. I work with kids and have nephews now, so I still get to play with them every once in a while.

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