This is a question that comes up frequently. It's also a myth that is stated as a fact on a regular basis. Thanks to STEM work in classes more and more people understand that it's not true, and that both boys and girls can excel in math.
In fact this is a subject that we see kids start out equally in, and then the stereotype can get in the way of the success of both genders. Even though we know from many studies, that kids are using the same patterns in their brain to learn and use math skills.
“Science doesn’t align with folk beliefs,” said senior author Jessica Cantlon, a professor of developmental neuroscience at Carnegie Mellon University in the United States. “We see that children’s brains function similarly regardless of their gender so hopefully we can recalibrate expectations of what children can achieve in mathematics.”
We do see as early as 6 and 7 years of age, is that girls are being conditioned by socialization, and are already distancing themselves from being "smart". (Bian, Leslie, & Cimpian, 2017) and we see a snowball effect in their confidence.
A key to success is to get girls interested in the math and science, at an early age, and continue to help both genders embrace the fun, and learning, the possibilities. Then as they are in highschool they are more likely to see a career in science, math, computers - as an option for anyone with the skill set. Not something based on gender.
Until next time, take care of you!
Director of Over The Bay Pre-K