Historic Women in Math and Science

Is there a young woman in your life that is excited by science or math, or perhaps obsessed with a particular field? Well my six year old daughter is currently planning on being a scientist that studies and cares for wild animals. Meanwhile my eight year old son is loving a special science class that lets him try a number of science experiments each week. To encourage both in all their interests I offer books, movies, and stories about people in those fields. Like many parents I find it frustrating that I have to search a little harder to find women pursuing the Sciences.

Here are a selection of children’s books about female pioneers and contributors to the fields of math and science. Hopefully they will help keep interested girls and young women interested in the fields, and perhaps get a few new interested parties.

A fascinating collection celebrates the clever and creative inventions of women from candles, helmets, and baby carriers to cancer-fighting drugs and details their fierce determination to overcome many hurdles to make their dreams come true.

Women Astronomers: Reaching for the Stars by Mabel Armstrong
Presents information about the achievements of women in the field of astronomy throughout history, from women astronomers in the ancient and medieval world to prominent women in the profession today.

A picture book biography tells the story of Sylvia Earle’s growing passion for the wonders of the sea and how her ocean exploration and advocacy have made her known around the world.
An authorized portrait about Grandin’s life with autism and her groundbreaking work as a scientist and designer of cruelty-free livestock facilities describes how she overcame key disabilities through education and the support of her mother.
Profiles the extraordinary lives of twenty-six women who, through their acts and deeds, helped shape and change the world during their lifetime, including pilot Amelia Earhart and anthropologist Zora Neal Hurston.
More great resources about women in math, science, and technology include: Super Women in Science by Kelly Di Domenico, Dian Fossey: Primatologist by Lois P. Nicholson, The Triumph of Discovery: Women Scientists Who Won the Nobel Prize by Joan Dash, Jane Goodall by Lisa Kozleski, Marvelous Mattie: How Margaret E. Knight Became an Inventor by Emily Arnold McCully, The Elephant Scientist by CaitlinO’Connell and Donna M. Jackson, Sally Ride: Life on a Mission by Sue Macy, Mae Jemison: the First African American Woman in Space by Magdalena Alagna, Marie Curie by Kathleen Krull, Look Up!: Henrietta Leavitt, Pioneering Woman Astronomer by Robert Burleigh, Margaret Mead: Coming of Age in America by Joan Mark, Women Mathematicians by Padma Venkatraman, Women in Space: 23 Stories of First Flights, Scientific Missions, and Gravity-breaking Adventures by Karen Bush Gibson, Rachel Carson: Extraordinary Environmentalist by Jill C. Wheeler, and Women and Numbers: Lives of Women Mathematicians Plus Discovery Activities by Teri Perl.

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