“Oh mamma, all engineers are boys”. This statement by my then 4-year old daughter left me stunned. As a former software engineer, I wanted to make sure that both my daughter and son knew that science, technology, engineering, arts and maths (STEAM) are not bound by gender and that any child, with the right amount of passion can delve into a world of limitless possibilities. This is where Lara came along.
Lara the Star Engineer is a book designed to introduce children between the ages of 5 to 9 to computing concepts in a whimsical manner, but really even grown ups can learn from it! At the same time, the book shows real-life role models from diverse backgrounds to inspire and represent the many faces of female engineers. The book was first published in the U.S. and Canada in 2018, became a bestseller, and is now being published in over 10 languages globally. Today on the International Girls in ICT Day, I’m excited to share that in partnership with Arab Scientific Publishers, Lara the Star Engineer is now available in Arabic across the Middle East & North Africa.
The experience is designed in a multi-layered manner. The semi-tech story narrative and downloadable activity sheets help children learn more about the field in a fun and engaging way. For children who want to learn more, they can find additional resources on the website.
Through this release, I hope to continue inspiring, including and engaging the region’s future Laras, wherever they may be and to remind kids that diversity is a preclude to great innovation and propels big dreams. So to the next Lara, don’t stop making your dreams reality.
Lara the Star Engineer can be purchased online from Arab Scientific Publishers and is a personal effort by a Googler.