Now more than ever, it’s important for our children to read about women activists!
We live in tumultuous times when it’s critical we teach our children to make their voice heard in their government.You can find these children’s books about women activists at your local library or purchase them through the affiliate links provided for your convenience.
Women Activists: Books for Children
The other day, I was looking through my Facebook feed when I saw a group of my friends post photos of their resent political rally.
What stood out to me was that they were all with their daughters.
Oh yes, these women are teaching their children early to speak up and make a difference.
It was so inspiring to see them all together.
The photos made me think about how I can inspire young girls to make their voices heard – and right then I knew I needed to research and create a list of children’s books about women activists to inspire even the youngest girls in our families.
These books are for preschoolers up, but if you want some wonderful board books for your toddler, consider these:
- Dream Big, Little One (Vashti Harrison)
- This Little Trailblazer: A Girl Power Primer
- Little Feminist Board Book Set
Children’s Picture Books about Women Activists
A 2019 Bank Street Best Book of the Year * Named to the 2019 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List * Selected for CCBC Choices Book 2019 * Selected as a Notable Social Studies Trade Books for Young People 2019
Fresh, accessible, and inspiring, Shaking Things Up introduces fourteen revolutionary young women—each paired with a noteworthy female artist—to the next generation of activists, trail-blazers, and rabble-rousers.
From the award-winning author of Ada’s Violin, Susan Hood, this is a poetic and visual celebration of persistent women throughout history.
Throughout American history, there have always been women who have spoken out for what’s right, even when they have to fight to be heard.
In early 2017, Senator Elizabeth Warren’s refusal to be silenced in the Senate inspired a spontaneous celebration of women who persevered in the face of adversity.
In this book, Chelsea Clinton celebrates thirteen American women who helped shape our country through their tenacity, sometimes through speaking out, sometimes by staying seated, sometimes by captivating an audience. They all certainly persisted.
Free as a Bird is the inspiring true story of a fearless girl and the father who taught her to soar.
The inspiring true story of Malala Yousafzai, human rights activist and the youngest ever winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, from debut author/illustrator Lina Maslo.
Inspired by the childhood of Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, a Chinese-African-Cuban girl who broke Cuba’s traditional taboo against female drummers, Drum Dream Girl tells an inspiring true story for dreamers everywhere.
Wangari was determined to help her people and her country. She recognized that deforestation and urbanization was at the root of her country’s troubles.
Her courage and confidence carried her through adversity to found a movement for peace, reconciliation, and healing.
Wangari Maathai changed the way the world thinks about nature, ecology, freedom, and democracy, inspiring radical efforts that continue to this day.
Bank Street College of Education Best Children’s Book of the Year
Poignant, moving, and hopeful, this is an intimate look at the birth of the Civil Rights Movement.
Paula Young Shelton, daughter of Civil Rights activist Andrew Young, brings a child’s unique perspective to an important chapter in America’s history.
With an activist father and a community of leaders surrounding her, including Uncle Martin (Martin Luther King), Paula watched and listened to the struggles, eventually joining with her family — and thousands of others — in the historic march from Selma to Montgomery
Walking many miles to school in the dusty road, young Coretta Scott knew the unfairness of life in the segregated south.
A yearning for equality began to grow. Together with Martin Luther King, Jr., she gave birth to a vision of change through nonviolent protest. It was the beginning of a journey — with dreams of freedom for all.
This extraordinary union of poetic text by Ntozake Shange and monumental artwork by Kadir Nelson captures the movement for civil rights in the United States and honors its most elegant inspiration, Coretta Scott.
Though eight-year-old Aidan and his friend Gussie want to go to school, like many other children in 1903, they work twelve hours, six days a week, at a cotton mill in Pennsylvania instead.
When a famous labor reformer named Mother Jones comes to hear of the millworkers’ demands, she tells them they need to do more than just strike.
Troubled by all she had seen, Mother Jones wanted to end child labor. But what could she do? Why, organize a children’s march and bring the message right to President Theodore Roosevelt at his summer home in Oyster Bay, of course!
The actual march raised awareness across North America and contributed to the passage of the first child labor laws.
A Junior Library Guild Selection * A Coretta Scott King Honor Book * A Christopher Award winner * A Jane Addams Children’s Honor Book * A Booklist “Top of the List” selection
We know her today as Harriet Tubman, but in her lifetime she was called by many names. As General Tubman she was a Union spy.
As Moses she led hundreds to freedom on the Underground Railroad. As Minty she was a slave whose spirit could not be broken. As Araminta she was a young girl whose father showed her the stars and the first steps on the path to freedom.
An evocative poem and stunning watercolors come together to honor a woman of humble origins whose courage and compassion make her a larger than life hero.
In April 1916, Nell Richardson and Alice Burke set out from New York City in a little yellow car, embarking on a bumpy, muddy, unmapped journey ten thousand miles long.
They took with them a teeny typewriter, a tiny sewing machine, a wee black kitten, and a message for Americans all across the country: Votes for Women!
Braving blizzards, deserts, and naysayers — not to mention a whole lot of tires stuck in the mud—the two courageous friends made their way through the cities and towns of America to further their cause.
One hundred years after Nell and Alice set off on their trip, Mara Rockliff revives their spirit in a lively and whimsical picture book, with exuberant illustrations by Hadley Hooper bringing their inspiring historical trek to life.
Rosa Parks took a stand by keeping her seat on the bus. When she was arrested for it, her supporters protested by refusing to ride.
Soon a community of thousands was coming together to help one another get where they needed to go. Some started taxis, some rode bikes, but they all walked and walked.
Andrea Davis Pinkney and Brian Pinkney present a poignant, blues-infused tribute to the folks of the Montgomery bus boycott, who refused to give up until they got justice.
An activist, educator, writer, journalist, suffragette, and pioneering voice against the horror of lynching, she used fierce determination and the power of the pen to educate the world about the unequal treatment of blacks in the United States.
In this picture book biography, award-winning, New York Times bestselling author Walter Dean Myers tells the story of this legendary figure, which blends harmoniously with the historically detailed watercolor paintings of illustrator Bonnie Christensen.
Acclaimed illustrator Matt Tavares beautifully captures the dynamism and verve of Helen Keller’s life and legacy, including her advocacy on behalf on people with disabilities and women’s suffrage.
Helen’s Big World is an unforgettable portrait of a woman whose vision for innovation and progress changed America and the world forever.
A Jane Addam’s Children’s Book Award Honor Book for Younger Children
Dolores is a teacher, a mother, and a friend. She wants to know why her students are too hungry to listen, why they don’t have shoes to wear to school.
Dolores is a warrior, an organizer, and a peacemaker. When she finds out that the farm workers in her community are poorly paid and working under dangerous conditions, she stands up for their rights.
This is the story of Dolores Huerta and the extraordinary battle she waged to ensure fair and safe work places for migrant workers.
Get to know celebrated Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — in the first picture book about her life — as she proves that disagreeing does not make you disagreeable!
Supreme Court justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has spent a lifetime disagreeing: disagreeing with inequality, arguing against unfair treatment, and standing up for what’s right for people everywhere.
This biographical picture book about the Notorious RBG, tells the justice’s story through the lens of her many famous dissents, or disagreements.
Meet the youngest known child to be arrested for a civil rights protest in Birmingham, Alabama, 1963, in this moving picture book that proves you’re never too little to make a difference.
Nine-year-old Audrey Faye Hendricks intended to go places and do things like anybody else.
So when she heard grown-ups talk about wiping out Birmingham’s segregation laws, she spoke up. As she listened to the preacher’s words, smooth as glass, she sat up tall.
And when she heard the plan — picket those white stores! March to protest those unfair laws! Fill the jails! —she stepped right up and said, I’ll do it! She was going to j-a-a-il!
On November 5, 1872, Susan B. Anthony made history — and broke the law — when she voted in the US presidential election, a privilege that had been reserved for men.
She was arrested, tried, and found guilty: “The greatest outrage History every witnessed,” she wrote in her journal.
It wasn’t until 1920 that women were granted the right to vote, but the civil rights victory would not have been possible without Susan B. Anthony’s leadership and passion to stand up for what was right.
A 2015 Pura Belpré Illustrator Honor Book * A 2015 Robert F. Sibert Honor Book
Almost 10 years before Brown vs. Board of Education, Sylvia Mendez and her parents helped end school segregation in California.
An American citizen of Mexican and Puerto Rican heritage who spoke and wrote perfect English, Mendez was denied enrollment to a “Whites only” school.
Her parents took action by organizing the Hispanic community and filing a lawsuit in federal district court. Their success eventually brought an end to the era of segregated education in California.
The remarkable true story of how former slave Isabella Baumfree transformed herself into the preacher and orator Sojourner Truth, an iconic figure of the abolitionist and women’s rights movements.
Written in the fiery and eloquent voice of Sojourner Truth herself, My Name Is Truth will captivate readers just as Sojourner’s passionate words enthralled her listeners.
When Clara arrived in America, she couldn’t speak English. She didn’t know that young women had to go to work, that they traded an education for long hours of labor, that she was expected to grow up fast.
But that didn’t stop Clara. She went to night school, spent hours studying English, and helped support her family by sewing in a shirtwaist factory.
Clara never quit, and she never accepted that girls should be treated poorly and paid little.
Fed up with the mistreatment of her fellow laborers, Clara led the largest walkout of women workers the country had seen.
In this companion book to She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World, Chelsea Clinton introduces readers to a group of thirteen incredible women who have shaped history all across the globe.
Women around the world have long dreamed big, even when they’ve been told their dreams didn’t matter. They’ve spoken out, risen up and fought for what’s right, even when they’ve been told to be quiet.
Whether in science, the arts, sports or activism, women and girls throughout history have been determined to break barriers and change the status quo.
They haven’t let anyone get in their way and have helped us better understand our world and what’s possible.
As a child in Pakistan, Malala made a wish for a magic pencil. She would use it to make everyone happy, to erase the smell of garbage from her city, to sleep an extra hour in the morning.
But as she grew older, Malala saw that there were more important things to wish for. She saw a world that needed fixing.
Even if she never found a magic pencil, Malala realized that she could still work hard every day to make her wishes come true.
This true story of Wangari Maathai, environmentalist and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, is a shining example of how one woman’s passion, vision, and determination inspired great change.
As a young girl growing up in Kenya, Wangari was surrounded by trees.
But years later when she returns home, she is shocked to see whole forests being cut down, and she knows that soon all the trees will be destroyed.
So Wangari decides to do something — and starts by planting nine seedlings in her own backyard. And as they grow, so do her plans.
Love these children’s books about women activists? Find more inspiring books about women on Mommy Evolution!
Join us for our annual Women’s History Month blog hop, celebrating the contributions and accomplishments of women around the world! Don’t miss our series from last year, 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015, and find even more posts on our Women’s History board on Pinterest: