Books Celebrating Women in History

March 10, 2021

As we celebrate Women’s History Month in March, we wanted to highlight the books on our current book list that celebrate women in history from around the world.

These women fought for change and made an impact on our world through their discoveries, teaching, and glass ceiling shattering. Pick up one of these books to celebrate the incredible accomplishments of these women and encourage the children in your life to dream.

Escape North!: The Story of Harriet Tubman (Step Into Reading, Level 4) by Monica Kulling

This book is ideal for elementary school kids, the easy to read book follows Harriet Tubman’s life from being born a slave to her freedom and leading others to freedom as a conductor on the Underground Railroad. She later worked as a suffragette and spy during the Civil War.

Midnight Teacher: Lilly Ann Granderson and Her Secret School by Janet Halfmann

In Mississippi in the mid-1800s, it was illegal for enslaved people to learn to read and write. Getting caught meant thirty-nine lashes with a whip as punishment. But this did not stop Lilly Ann Granderson, an enslaved woman herself. She believed in the power of education. To share her knowledge with others, she started a midnight school. In a small cabin hidden in a back alley, Lilly Ann held her secret classes. Every noise in the dark was a reminder of the punishment she and her students faced if they were found out. But the chance to learn was worth the risk. Over the years, Lilly Ann taught hundreds of enslaved people to read and write. Many of her students went on to share their knowledge with their families. Some started secret schools of their own. Others forged passes to escape to freedom in the North. Based on a true story, Midnight Teacher is an inspiring testament to a little-known pioneer in education.

Brave Clara Barton by Frank Murphy

Meet a woman who outgrew her childhood shyness to became a fearless “Angel of the Battlefield”! This Step 3 biography follows Clara Barton as she helps her brother recover from a terrible injury, overcomes her timidity, and works as a teacher, and finally fights her way to the front lines of the Civil War, where she helps soldiers wounded in battle. Clara’s story is a testament to the strength, grit, and persistence of women; Clara Barton is a role model who transcends history.

You Should Meet Mae Jemison by Laurie Calkhoven

The You Should Meet series is a great introduction for young readers to incredible Americans and this book is no different. Learn all about Mae Jemison, the first African-American female astronaut. She was also a chemical engineer and doctor; she served in the Peace Corps as a doctor and then as a general practitioner before applying to NASA’s astronaut program and eventually going to space.

Hidden Figures (Young Readers’ Edition) by Margot Lee Shetterly

This powerful story of four African-American female mathematicians at NASA who helped achieve some of the greatest moments in our space program is a great read for your tween. These remarkable women were known as “human computers,” and made all of their calculations using pencils, slide rules, and adding machines; these calculations would ultimately launch rockets and astronauts into space

I am Marie Curie by Brad Meltzer

The first woman to win a Nobel Prize, physicist and chemist Marie Curie is the 19th hero in the New York Times bestselling picture book biography series about heroes. The

I am Helen Keller by Brad Meltzer

When Helen Keller was very young, she got a rare disease that made her deaf and blind. Suddenly, she couldn’t see or hear at all, and it was hard for her to communicate with anyone. But when she was six years old, she met someone who change her life forever: her teacher, Annie Sullivan. With Miss Sullivan’s help, Helen learned how to speak sign language and read Braille. Armed with the ability to express herself, Helen grew up to become a social activist, leading the fight for disabled people and so many other causes.

Tallchief: America’s Prima Ballerina by Maria Tallchief

Growing up on the Osage Indian reservation, Maria Tallchief was a gifted pianist and dancer. According to Osage tradition, women are not permitted to dance, but Maria’s parents recognized her gifts and allowed her to break the rule. Then when Maria reached the age of twelve, her father told her it was time to choose between her two loves. Maria chose ballet. It was a decision that would change not only the course of her life, but the face of classical ballet in America. The fascinating story of Maria Tallchief’s rise to become America’s prima ballerina will captivate young readers.

Who is Malala Yousafzai? by Dinah Brown

I am Rosa Parks by Brad Meltzer
Rosa Parks dared to stand up for herself and other African Americans by staying seated and organizing the Montgomery Bus Boycott. As a result, she helped end public bus segregation and launch the country’s Civil Rights Movement.