Children's Books for Parents and Teachers - book reviews and suggestions for parents and teachers.
Women

To prepare your class for Women’s History Month in March, we’ve come up with a collection of great books that focus on women and girls who stand out as models of character, power, and skill. Written about female historical figures, as well as characters from folklore and fiction, these books will help you and your students celebrate women and their diverse accomplishments.

One for the Murphys

One for the Murphys

By: Lynda Hunt
Publisher: Nancy Paulsen Books
Level: 12-13

A moving debut novel about a foster child learning to open her heart to a family’s love. Carley uses humor and street smarts to keep her emotional walls high and thick. But the day she becomes a foster child, and moves in with the Murphys, she’s blindsided. This loving, bustling family shows Carley the stable family life she never thought existed, and she feels like an alien in their cookie-cutter-perfect household. Despite her resistance, the Murphys eventually show her what it feels like to belong–until her mother wants her back …

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Almost Astronauts, 13 Women Who Dared to Dream

Almost Astronauts, 13 Women Who Dared to Dream

By: Tanya Lee Stone, Margaret A. Weitekamp
Publisher: Candlewick
Level: 14+

Provides the story of the thirteen women connected with NASA’s Mercury 13 space mission, who braved prejudice and jealousy to make their mark and open the door for the female pilots and space commanders that would soon follow.

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Sonia's Song

Sonia’s Song

By: Sonia Korn-Grimani
Publisher: Clay Grouse Press
Level: 14+

At the age of eight, little Sonia Korn is declared an enemy of the German State. She and her family are given the choice to either find a way to leave Germany on their own, without any resources, or be deported. After a series of frightening narrow escapes, Sonia finds that she must give up everything she knows and loves just to survive. This is the complex true story of one girl, who rises from war’s ashes to sing the songs of hope and love world-wide. A heart-wrenching and poignant …

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The Daring Book for Girls

The Daring Book for Girls

By: Andrea Buchanan
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Level: 14+

The Daring Book for Girls is the manual for everything that girls need to know — and that doesn’t mean sewing buttonholes! Whether it’s female heroes in history, secret note-passing skills, science projects, friendship bracelets, double dutch, cats cradle, the perfect cartwheel or the eternal mystery of what boys are thinking, this book has it all. But it’s not just a guide to giggling at sleepovers — although that’s included, of course! Whether readers consider themselves tomboys, girly-girls, or a little bit of both, this book is every girl’s invitation …

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The Care and Keeping of You: The Body Book for Girls

The Care and Keeping of You: The Body Book for Girls

By: Valorie Lee Schaefer
Publisher: American Girl Publishing
Level: 12-13

This “head-to-toe” guide answers all your questions, from hair care to healthy eating, bad breath to bras, periods to pimples, and everything in between. With tips, how-to’s, letters from girls, and facts from the experts, here’s straightforward advice you can really use.

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Girls: A History of Growing Up Female in America

Girls: A History of Growing Up Female in America

By: Penny Colman
Publisher: Scholastic, 2000

This innovative and well-researched book by Penny Colman uses primary source material (journals, letters, photographs, and magazines) to tell the story of real-life girls from pre-Colonial times to the present. Girls will help you inspire your students to keep their own journals and record their own histories.

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Stealing Freedom

Stealing Freedom

By: Elisa Carbone
Publisher: Dell, 1998
Level: 12-13

Ann Maria Weems was a slave who lived during the mid-1800s in Maryland. When she was 13 years old, she disguised herself as a boy and escaped to Canada. This carefully researched historical novel tells her story, which is one of adventure and escape fused with careful details about the Underground Railroad.

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Let It Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters

Let It Shine: Stories of Black Women Freedom Fighters

By: Andrea Davis Pinkney
Publisher: Harcourt, 2000
Level: 10-11

Pinkney tells the stories of ten African American women — from Soujourner Truth to Rosa Parks — who faced prejudice and oppression with amazing courage and grace. In the end, all ten women paved the way for changes in the lives of future generations.

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Through My Eyes

Through My Eyes

By: Ruby Bridges
Publisher: Scholastic, 1999
Level: 10-11

In November 1960, America watched as six-year-old Ruby Bridges, surrounded by U.S. marshals, walked through a crowd of threatening segregationists to enter her elementary school. Forty years later, Bridges tells how she made civil rights history by being one of the first African American students to attend an all-white school in New Orleans.

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Lives of Extraordinary Women

Lives of Extraordinary Women

By: Kathleen Krull
Publisher: Harcourt, 2000
Level: 10-11

Krull’s book makes it clear that men are not always the ones in charge. In this colorfully illustrated book, she introduces 20 women that have been queens, warriors, prime ministers, revolutionary leaders, and Indian chiefs. She also features first ladies who refused to stand by while others ran the show.

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