Math4Girls students

This fall, Lancaster Mennonite (LM) twelfth grader, Claire Thomas, started a chapter of a club called “Math4Girls”. The after school club for 4th and 5th grade girls focuses on fighting the gender gap in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and building interest and engagement with mathematics. LM is in the top 10% for U.S. high schools nationally due to our innovative STEM curriculum opportunities and dedicated teachers who are preparing students to excel in college, career, and life.

Last summer, LM senior Claire Thomas studied at the PA Governor’s School for the Sciences where she met the program founder of Math4Girls. There, she was inspired to start the LM chapter for the club this year. She said that, “being a branch leader for Math4Girls has been a very rewarding experience because I’ve had the opportunity to get to know some very awesome young girls and see them explore mathematics in a way that is interesting to them.”

Throughout the year, they met together to work through new math concepts with fun activities! 

LM 4th grader, Cora said that “playing the fun math games really helped us to learn.” They were able to cover many math concepts including divisibility rules, binary code, the Mayan number system, the Four Color theorem, fractals, and sequences! Claire’s favorite activities were “creating a mystery code that students had to solve to learn about cryptography and ciphers and making a big Sierpinski Triangle.”

Noelle, 5th grade, shared that she enjoyed experiencing “cool things about math that can be used in the future.” Possibly the most exciting thing about the club is that it not only imparts knowledge and grows participant’s skill levels, it builds a community. 4th grade student, Yanet, said her favorite part about being in the club was that she had the chance to learn math and spend time with friends. 

At LM, the curriculum emphasizes communication, collaboration, creativity, and critical thinking so students are prepared to succeed in the workplace of the future. It is so exciting to see older students taking initiative to be a role model, care for younger students, and help them succeed. It is opportunities like this that cultivate the next generation of excellent STEM professionals!