Toy Makers Get Serious About Science Kits for Girls
Yellow Scope is a Portland company started by two Portland scientist moms.
In the past few years, educators and others have been heavily promoting STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) to girls. Some toymakers have hoped to cash in on that interest, while others honestly promote it; simply coloring construction toys pink or purple and marketing them as girl-friendly has been controversial.
Science kits are starting to get it right, however, by way of putting boys and girls on their packaging. For a while, the only kit I had that featured only girls on the packaging was a kit about the science of making perfume. Toymakers are now stepping up; girls are showing up center stage on the outside of ordinary science kits.
Beyond just packaging, a new chemistry set by the Portland company Yellow Scope was developed just for girls. The award-winning Foundation Chemistry Kit was created by two women-scientist moms who met at a school science fair. Marcie Colledge and Kelly McCollum are committed to “rigorous and creative science kits just for girls”; their science kit targets the scientific and creative minds of girls ages 8 to 12.
Next time you’re in a toy store, check out the new offerings by Yellow Scope and others.
Allen Rickert is owner of Top Ten Toys in Seattle and our city's resident expert on toys for all ages.