This snowy winter has provided plenty of time to cozy up inside with a good book. We asked, Barbara Cohen, Bilingual Children’s Librarian at Warner Library in Tarrytown, for Women’s History Month-inspired book recommendations for boys and girls in different age categories. She had plenty to offer!
Board Books (~0-2 years)
Yes, you should be reading to infants! Cohen says, “Exposing young children to a variety of books at an early age plays an integral part in their development. Especially titles that focus on positive images with simple educational text.” She likes:
This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer by Joan Holub. Rhyming couplets tell the stories of 10 important female figures including Rosa Parks, Malala Youfsazai, and Ada Lovelace. Cohen says: “Its bright colors and rhyming text keeps the subject light and just right.”
Lil’ Libros: The Life of / La Vida de… by Patty Rodriguez. These simple and fun bilingual biographies introduce prominent figures in Latin American history, from Dolores Huerta to legendary singers Celia Cruz and Selena.
Picture Books (~2-5 years)
There’s no shortage of fantastic picture books featuring women. Recent biographies that Cohen recommends include:
Ruth Objects: The Life of Ruth Bader Ginsburg by Doreen Rappaport. “The illustrations by Eric Velasquez help convey the strength and determination Ruth displayed throughout her fight for equality for women.”
A girl named Rosita: The Story of Rita Moreno: Actor, Singer, Dancer, Trailblazer by Anika Aldamuy Denise. Cohen says, “The bright colors of Leo Espinosa’s illustrations bring her story to life as Rita dances across the pages in beautiful costumes.”
Kamala and Maya’s Big Idea by Meena Harris. This story of true events that happened in the life of VP Kamala Harris as a child demonstrates how people of any age can impact their community.
Early Readers (~5-7 years)
Cohen likes these books with charming illustrations and leveled reading for emerging readers:
She Persisted in Sports: American Olympians Who Changed the Game by Chelsea Clinton. The newest book in this series focuses on 16 female athletes who overcame obstacles to achieve success in 13 different sports, including golf, tennis, and soccer.
Cece Loves Science: Push and Pull by Kimberly Derting. Cohen recommends this new I Can Read chapter book because it smashes stereotypes of girls in science with its protagonist “who loves to solve problems using STEM techniques and experiments.” It includes home activities to reinforce the concepts.
Middle Grade (~7-12 years)
These real-life stories for an older, middle grade audience will engage kids by transporting them to different times and places.
Finish the Fight: The Brave and Revolutionary Women Who Fought for the Right to Vote by Veronica Chambers and the Staff of The New York Times. “This is an amazing book that sheds light on the many diverse women who were a part of the suffragist movement,” Cohen says. “These forgotten figures deserve to be known for playing an integral role in the fight for the women’s right to vote.”
The Eagle Huntress: The True Story of the Girl Who Soared Beyond Expectations by Aisholpan Nurgaiv with Liz Welch. A teenage eagle hunter tells the empowering story of how she became the first female winner of the Ölgii eagle festival, a Mongolian hunting competition.
Path to the Stars: My Journey from Girl Scout to Rocket Scientist by Sylvia Acevedo. Acevedo reveals how her time in the Girl Scouts helped her to become one of the few female rocket scientists in NASA. Cohen describes it as “An encouraging story to follow your dreams.”
EXTRA: March WHM Programs at Warner Library
March 8 @ 4:30 pm
Bilingual Buddies Zoom Book Group
Read and discuss: Sophia Valdez Future Prez by Andrea Beaty
Sign up for a link to the class:
Storyteller April Armstrong presents Girl Power: Stories and Songs from Near and Far
March 22 @ 6:30 pm on Zoom
In celebration of Women’s History Month: Join award winning storyteller, April Armstrong (2020 JJ Reneaux Emerging Artist Award from the National Storytelling Network) as she shares stories and songs of inspiring and courageous women.
Sign-up for the link to the event: firstname.lastname@example.org / An event for the whole family.