The esteemed former (thankfully) president of Harvard insinuated that females, well, we just aren't genetically cut out for those *hard* subjects like science.
I'd like to introduce him to my 7 year old daughter.
On Saturday, she woke up and asked if we could do a science experiment. "Sure," I replied, "What did you have in mind?" She'd read something about the effects of salt in water in one of her Discovery Kids magazines and wanted to test it for herself.
So, she directed me to fill two ice cube trays with water. She got out all of the measuring spoons and painstakingly measured different amounts of salt into each cube. Then she diagrammed it all on a sheet of paper, taking careful notes as to which tray had which amount of salt.
Finally, she set a timer. Every single hour, for the entire day, we took it out and wrote down her observations.
The salty ice cubes are still in the freezer, 5 days later, because some of the damn cubes haven't frozen yet. Me, I'm ready to reclaim the ice cube trays for real ice...but she wants to continue the experiment.
We talked to my parents tonight and I had to wrestle the phone away from her ear. She wanted to tell them about every detail of every cube. I knew I needed to intervene when she told them, "The one with one pinch froze right away on May 13 at 11 am. The one with two pinches took a little longer." I guess if anyone wants to hear that level of detail, it would be a grandparent...but still....
I've got a girl who loves math and science and thinks that the best fun in the world is a science project.
I've got a boy who has a huge imagination and makes up story after story about imaginary friends.
Anecdotal, yes. But my experience has taught me that although gender may affect behavior patterns and physical preferences, it doesn't really affect intellect.
Someone out there - please enjoy an iced tea for me. It's going to be a while before that ice cube with two tablespoons of salt freezes and I can reclaim my ice tray. Until then, I'll just revel in the fact that I can help prove Mr. Summers wrong.