If You Can’t March, Read! Picture Books to Read to Your Little Ones on International Women’s Day
Thursday March 8th is International Women’s day! To celebrate I’ve put together a booklist to inspire little readers to celebrate strong women of the past and present, and to inspire them to support and become tomorrow’s generation of outspoken women of the future.
International Women’s Day (IWD) was first celebrated on March 19, 1911 in Austria, Denmark, Germany and Sweden. Over one million men and women came out to rally for women’s rights to work, vote, hold public office and end discrimination. In 1975, IWD grew even more when it was celebrated for the first time by the United Nations. On its hundredth birthday in 2011, an thrilling year no matter what, IWD experienced even more excitement when President Obama proclaimed March 2011 to be Women’s History Month. Women’s History Month is now celebrated every year in the United States of America as an extension of IWD!
Now on to the books.
The Most Magnificent Thing – Ashley Spires
This story is about a little girl who is going to make the most magnificent thing with the help of her pet dog assistant of course! She knows exactly what she wants it to look like, and how it will work, but it turns out making the thing is much harder than she thought. This book explores the themes of creativity and the rewards of hard work.
The Princess Knight – Cornelia Funke
Not every princess wants to get married! Certainly not Violetta. Violetta is a young princess who wants to train to be a knight just like her big brothers, but her father will not allow it. What’s a princess to do? Why, disguise herself and take part in a jousting tournament of course! You’ll cheer Violetta on from start to finish!
Rosa – Nikki Giovanni
When Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on the bus in Montgomery, Alabama 50 years ago, she helped shape history. This beautiful Caldecott honor book retells the story of the historic event in a unique way and celebrates one of the most important figures in the American civil rights movement.
Sheila Rae, the Brave – Kevin Henkes
Sheila Rae isn’t afraid of anything! It’s her sister Louise who she is always teasing for being afraid of every little thing. But one day, Sheila Rae wanders down a strange path. Could Louise truly be the brave one of the two sisters?
When I was Eight – Christy Jordan-Fenton
This picture book is an adaption of the bestselling memoir, Fatty Legs. It tells the story of a young Inuit girl, Olemaun, whose desire to learn how to read takes her to a residential school. At the school she is treated terribly by one nun in particular, but Olemaun’s spirit is never broken. This beautiful story reminds us of the power of reading, and how fortunate we are to be able to learn to read so freely.
The Paper Bag Princess – Robert Munsch
What would this list be without this classic?!
Elizabeth seems to be your typical pretty princess until one day a dragon comes along and smashes up her castle and burns all her pretty clothes! The dragon even steals her beloved Prince Ronald. But clever Elizabeth finds a paper bag to turn into a dress and discovers the dragon’s trail. Children will cheer Elizabeth on as she outsmarts the dragon and tries to win her beloved Ronald back!