Even if we haven’t yet taken hold of the White House, women have come a long way toward equality in the past century. As much as we want our little feminist men and women to see all people as equal, it’s also our job to teach them about the trailblazers that got us to this point. Since March is Women’s History Month, now is the perfect opportunity to start the conversation — and then continue it for the rest of the year and beyond — with the help of books that are simultaneously informative and engaging.
Not that there’s ever a wrong time to teach your kids about all the badass women who have changed the world throughout history. The real struggle is narrowing down the book list, so we’ve put together a starter pack for you — because you’ll want to pay equal attention to centuries-old icons like Elizabeth Cady Stanton and the lesser-known (but just as important) game-changers like Jazz Jennings or modern marvels like the Notorious RBG.
We know how hard it is to find the right books to catch our kids’ eyes and hearts. When all they want to do is read the same rhyming book they heard last night, or read a new graphic novel, can you really get them to absorb the nonfiction stories of women who fought for our right to vote, the girls who stood up for their right to an education, the scientists and mathematicians who pursued their research despite all the men who told them they couldn’t? Yes, provided you’ve chosen the right books for the job. We think this list, which includes everything from picture books to young-adult nonfiction, is a good place to start.
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A version of this story was originally published in March 2018.