On March 1st, Women’s History Month kicked off nationwide. I am really excited that people are trying their best to celebrate and teach about women’s history during March. However, I went back-and-forth about doing a blog post about Women’s History Month because of my own views.

I am a big believer that women’s history should not be confined to only one month (just like I believe Black History should not be confined to February, Hispanic Heritage should not be confined to September/October, etc.), but integrated throughout the year. When we limit our children and students to just one month of [fill in the blank] identity group, we are perpetuating the idea that they are only worthy of one month.

Yet, I recognize that these types of months are the entry point for many educators, librarians, and families to start integrating these marginalized groups into their everyday education. Therefore, I am going to be using the rest of March to showcase Diverse Books featuring and authored by some amazing Women of Color. I am doing this in order to provide the resources for those beginning their social justice journey into full integration of our true history and showcase books/resources that people can reference beyond March (I mean the internet is “forever” and you can access these resources beyond the day I post haha).

For our first Fast Five Friday in support of Women’s History all year long, I have developed a list of 5 Diverse Books for Women’s History. A lot of these books span representation of women of color AND white women, but they still do a great job positioning women of color, who are often left out in our history education, as the brilliance we are! These are five books that every educator, librarian, and family should showcase to learn about and celebrate women of color.

5 Diverse Books for Women's History

1. Bad Girls Throughout History: 100 Remarkable Women Who Changed the World, by Ann Shen

Bad Girls Throughout History by Ann ShenThe Spectrum for Multicultural Lit: Dependent on the Section (Questions to Ask: Is the section about explicit racism or discrimination faced? Did the women do explicit work for her culture or race?)

Ann Shen authored this great book that lays out the brief history of 100 women who did amazing things. Shen also illustrated this book with her colorful and lively depictions of these women. There are many women of color featured in this book and Shen is a woman of color, which makes the impact of this book even more great.

2. This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer, by Joan Holub

This Little Trailblazer by Joan HolubThe Spectrum for Multicultural Lit: Dependent on the Section (Questions to Ask: Is the section about explicit racism or discrimination faced? Did the women do explicit work for her culture or race?)

This Little Trailblazer is a picture book targeted at younger children to start conversations about women who impacted the world. Joan Holub wrote little rhymes about each woman and, at the end, it lists more women and leaves a spot for the reader to visualize themselves with these trailblazers. Holub’s book features a handful of women of color, but I also want to call out that the women of color are concentrated to the back of the book. While this leaves the reader with women of color as the last stories they hear, part of me wishes more women of color were featured towards the beginning of the book. Either way, the rhyming makes this book very engaging for younger children.

3. Dream Big, Little One, by Vashti Harrison

The Spectrum for Multicultural Lit: Dependent on the Section (Questions to Ask: Is the section about explicit racism or discrimination faced? Did the women do explicit work for her culture or race?)

Vashti Harrison wrote this book that is perfect for any age and a quick read. It features 18 black women who have had huge impacts on American history. Harrison’s books is the perfect way to inspire any reader while also showcasing representation of some amazing women of color!

4. A is for Awesome!: 23 Iconic Women Who Changed the World, by Eva Chen

A is for Awesome! by Eva ChenThe Spectrum for Multicultural Lit: Dependent on the Section (Questions to Ask: Is the section about explicit racism or discrimination faced? Did the women do explicit work for her culture or race?)

Eva Chen wrote an ABC book that features 23 iconic women (one for almost every single letter of the alphabet). Her book showcases many women of color while also featuring some White women as well. On each page, there is a sentence about the featured woman, a brilliant illustration by Derek Deistro, and a famous quote (for some). I love the infusion of speech bubbles and quotes to inspire our readers!

5. Little Dreamers: Visionary Women Around the World, by Vashti Harrison

Little Dreamers by Vashti HarrisonThe Spectrum for Multicultural Lit: Dependent on the Section (Questions to Ask: Is the section about explicit racism or discrimination faced? Did the women do explicit work for her culture or race?)

I just had to add another book by Vashti Harrison because she writes some kick-butt books! This book is similar to our #3, but it is geared more towards older readers. Harrison wrote a few paragraphs per women that provides an overview of the women’s history and contribution to the world. Her book features women from around the world and a good amount of women of color.

Happy Women’s History Month! Please remember that women’s history should NOT be confined to just March though 🙂

 

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