We’ve all seen Rosie the Riveter: blue coveralls, red polka-dotted bandanna, biceps blazing. Rosie is a cultural icon, used to mobilize women into manufacturing during World War II. But sixty years after Rosie helped recruit 3 million women into war plants across the US, many women still seem reluctant to pick up the riveter.
Women make up over half of the population. So, why aren’t there more women repairing? Women are underrepresented in many fields—especially technical fields. In 1997, women earned just 33.8% of degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). By 2007, that number had dropped to 27.5%. As a woman in STEM, I’ve thought a lot about what stops women from joining our ranks. Maybe women don’t replace their hard drives for the same reason they don’t often change a tire: lack of confidence.
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.