‘SciGirls’ turns the camera on young citizen scientists

Three pre-teen girls — Quinn, Izzie and Mimi — watch a butterfly emerge from its cocoon. A camera captures the wonder on their faces as they hold the newly formed butterfly. These girls are the star of Twin Cities Public Television’s “SciGirls,” which aims to inspire young girls to go into science and engineering.

“’SciGirls’ is a distinctive way of letting girls see themselves succeeding at science and engineering,” says Richard Hudson, director of science production for Twin Cities Public Television.

The show starts with a problem from animated characters Izzie and Jake. They learn how to solve their problem using science and engineering, bringing girls in front of the camera to learn and participate in science experiments. Getting to do real science is the appeal for Mimi, one of the show’s young stars.

“I feel that when you read about it, it’s just not the same and you won’t learn as much,” she said.

“SciGirls” is not just a TV show. The program also has a website, which provides a safe networking and learning place for girls ages 8-12 who want to learn about science and engineering.

Miles O’Brien has more behind the scenes of this show on this episode of the National Science Foundation series, “Science Nation”.*

*For the record, the National Science Foundation is also an underwriter of the NewsHour.