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25 August 2017

Jubilite is the colorful lamp getting girls involved in STEM

The new game is aimed at getting more girls in STEM.
The new game is aimed at getting more girls in STEM.

Image: stefan rousseau/Getty Images

According to a U.S. News & World report in 2015, women were still highly underrepresented in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) fields. Women made up only 39 percent of chemists and material scientists, 28 percent of environmental scientists and geoscientists, 16 percent of chemical engineers, and a staggeringly low 12 percent of civil engineers. 

MIT scientists Maria Yang and Tony Hu founded Brainy Yak Labs to help boost those numbers by encouraging more young girls that math, science, engineering can be fun and creative. Their first product is a dance party toy called Jubilite.

Described as a “dance party lamp kit,” the toy gives kids the opportunity to build, wire, and decorate their own lamp. When it’s complete, Jubilite can create a personalized light show, colored and timed to however the young designer created it.

Earlier this summer, Jubilite earned more than $37,000 (exceeding its $25,000 goal) on Kickstarter. Interested parents and STEM students can now pre-order the kit on the Brainy Yak Labs website. The lamp kit runs at $44.99 while the deluxe lamp kit (with extra decorations) will cost you $64.99. The plan is for lamps to start shipping in the U.S. in February 2018.

The lamp is different from other types of popular STEM-based toys like robots, which tend to be more popular with boys than girls. With Jubilite, kids learn how to use tools, wire, and understand the concepts that go into creating the whole display. The whole idea is to let kids learn to use the tools of engineering and programming, minus any potential gender bias at the outset.

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