I love Women’s History Month.
I appreciate and adore it. For many holidays and observances, I stock my daughter’s bookshelf with titles that support our learning about those dedicated days and months. However, if you happen to peruse my toddler’s bookshelf on any given month, you probably wouldn’t notice any difference from our February stash.
Mostly because there isn’t any.
I’m raising a fiery, strong-willed, red-headed threenager. She prefers to have an audience at all times, she sings loudly and shamelessly until the whole neighborhood is listening, and she is one heck of a leader.
Which brings us back to her bookshelf.
I’ve purchased and returned way too many books that I felt sent her the wrong message, for one reason or another. Sometimes, I really just despise how women and girls are depicted in children’s literature, and it makes me extra thankful when I’m able to find a book we both love. In honor of Women’s History Month, here are our tried and true favorite feminist books, chosen for you by my favorite 3-year-old, in no particular order.
Written by a powerful advocate, attorney, and mom, this book is aimed at helping girls understand their own value. It’s beautifully written and genuinely brings tears to my eyes every single time. Rachael’s passion for building strong girls and women jumps off the page beyond her beautiful poetic rhymes. The illustrations are captivating and appropriate. (This book does have an overtly Christian tone.)
What’s better than an amazing woman for each letter of the alphabet? From Beyonce to Malala, this book has a wide variety of women role models for a younger audience. The descriptions are short, the letters are distinguished, and it’s perfect for the 0–3 audience. The pages are bright and attractive, and the last page features a mirror for “wonderful you”!
This lighthearted book is about three little girl chicks who are loud, independent, and tough. They love to do “tough chick” things like diving off the fence and racing the bugs, while their mother receives criticism to “make them be good” and learn how to find grain and build a nest. Their equally tough mom always stands up for them and allows them to break gender stereotypes until they eventually save the farm. The illustrations are fun, and it’s an “easy” read for parents.
I love this book because it simply but vibrantly features a female protagonist who works to bring her whole community together to make their world a better place. Adapted by Bob Marley’s daughter, it can be sung or read, and it truly encompasses his original message.
It’s hard to find a good body-positive book that features female characters of diverse sizes. I love the message that all bodies are beautiful regardless of their size. This is a great book to teach self-love and body-positive affirmations to young girls.