There are any number of ways to celebrate International Women’s Day for kids. You can celebrate the day with activities, crafts or learning about amazing women’s stories. Reading one (or more) of these fabulous children’s books for International Women’s Day is a great place to start.
Be sure to check out all of our amazing book recommendations on our EPIC Top Books for Kids page.
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You can attend a workshop, you can join a march, you can sign petitions, the options are endless. As a parent, I am always looking for ways to celebrate International Women’s Day at home. After all my daughters are the women of the future. They will be the women marching in the future – here’s hoping they won’t have to march for women’s rights when they are adults.
This is why I love using books as a tool to educate kids. These International Women’s Day Books will introduce kids to women in positions of power and independent women who are fighting stereotypes. I feel like this book list is for girls, boys, men and women.
What is International Women’s Day?
The first International Women’s Day took place in 1911. IWD is a day to celebrate women’s accomplishments – economic, political, social, cultural, and more. Each IWD is also an opportunity to reflect on how we can improve conditions for women around the world. I imagine that it has a different meaning to different women around the world.
International Women’s Day was the event that sparked the creation of this book list, but my hope is that everyone will read these books…add them to their home library. Everyone will find the stories interesting and inspiring. Here’s hoping boys and girls will find a favourite book in this list and pursue his or her dreams.
International Women’s Day Children’s Books
Malala Yousafzai: Warrior with Words You may be familiar with Malala Yousafzai’s story – the young Pakistani girl who was shot on a bus, travelling to school. She survived the attack and now fights for access to education for children around the world. This book shares her story in a way that is appropriate for young children. Introduce young children to her story and her passion through this book.
Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch This classic from author Robert Munsch introduces young readers to a princess who kicks all stereotypes to the curb. She stands up to a dragon and an obnoxious prince.
I am Rosa Parks (Ordinary People Change the World) by Brad Meltzer – Brad Meltzer introduces young readers to Rosa Parks’ story. The book spends time explores bullying and bigotry in a way that is accessible to young readers. A great introduction to social justice issues and a civil rights hero.
Who is Jane Goodall – My daughter read this book this year and was totally captured by Jane Goodall’s story. Following Jane Goodall’s story from her childhood through to her present day work is inspiring. Knowing that Jane Goodall fell in love with chimpanzees as a young child and that love took her all around the world…amazing.
Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo And now for something completely different…a book of short stories about awesome women who have made a mark on history. This book brings together the stories of 60 women and 100 international artists to illustrate those stories. This book is a modern classic that is going to be passed down for generations.
Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty When your child looks at a pile of sticks does she reach in and start building? Perhaps you have a little engineer on your hands. Andrea Beaty introduces us to Rosie Revere, an unlikely engineer. Seeing girls exploring engineering, architecture and scientists is what Beaty brings to life in her book series.
Shaking Things Up by Susan Hood Shaking Things Up is a beautifully written and illustrated book that brings to life the stories of 14 women who have shaken things up through history. The book is filled with poetry and illustrations that kids of all ages will find engaging and inspiring.
Katy and the Big Snow by Virginia Lee Burton How many books about trucks have you picked up and the truck is ALWAYS a BOY. I have to think there are girl trucks out there. Yep, there’s Katy the snowplow. She is strong and determined and she can handle even the biggest blizzard. Love this one.
I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsberg Make Her Mark by Debbie Levy How can a person effectively voice their disagreement? Look at the life and experiences of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg. This picture book follows through a number of her most significant moment of dissent and how change can come about when you stand up and voice your opposition.
Princess Smartypants by Babette Cole Turn that princess stereotype upside down. Princess Smartypants isn’t looking to get married – she’s happy on her own. What happens when her family pressures her to find a Prince? It’s a pretty clever and funny outcome that will show kids that independence is okay.
Hidden Figures Young Readers Edition by Margot Lee Shetterly It’s hard to imagine a world without computers, especially for children. Hidden Figures introduces readers to the women “human computers” who built the foundation of the NASA space program. This book covers important social justice issues – civil rights and women’s rights. Read the book and then watch the film.
She Persisted Around the World: 13 Women Who Changed History by Chelsea Clinton and Alexandra Boiger You may have read the companion book, She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed History , however we loved the international take on women’s history. This book will introduce 13 remarkable women who have made significant contributions to science, technology, social science, human rights and more.
Black Women in Science: A Black History Book by Kimberly Brown Pellum, Ph.D. Discover the stories of remarkable Black women who have made significant contributions to Science, Technology, Math and Engineering. Some stories will be familiar and some will be new to you. An inspiring collection for young readers.
Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren We love Pippi! Pippi is a young girl who lives in a big house (with a monkey and a horse) all on her own. Pippi is an independent role model for kids everywhere. This particular edition is brought to life through Lauren Child’s awesome collage art…such a fabulous book.
Me Frida by Amy Novesky There are many books about the legendary artist Frida Kahlo. Me, Frida focuses on the year she spent in San Fransisco. This year pushed Frida into an unknown city where she found confidence in herself and her art. A beautiful story of love and a woman finding her inner strength.
Little Leaders: Bold Women in Black History by Vashti Harrison is a wonderful book to read for International Women’s Day and black history month. The illustrations in this book bring the stories of 40 incredible black women. We loved that this book explored historical women and modern day women. Some remarkable women to get to know.
Who Says Women Can’t Be Doctors?: The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell by Tanya Lee Stone How could there have been a time when women couldn’t be doctors?! Well, in the 1930s only men could be doctors. Meet Elizabeth Blackwell, the first female doctor. She overcame rejection and discrimination in this powerful story of women’s rights to education.
Rad Women Worldwide by Kate Schatz Take a look at the stories of radical women from around the world. This book presents the stories in quick and colourful biographies. Expect to find stories about revolutionary women from the world of science, technology, social justice, the arts and much more.
Discover the story of 20 amazing Canadian women who changed history with our International Women’s Day fact sheet for kids
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