30 Multicultural Children’s Books About Women In STEM

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Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

 

Too often have the achievements and contributions of women — and even more so women of colour — in STEM fields been overlooked. So this Women’s Month, let’s celebrate some extraordinary female scientists of colour who have shattered the glass ceiling, despite facing racial and gender discrimination!


30 Multicultural Children’s Books About Women In STEM


Preschool


The Doctor with an Eye for Eyes: The Story of Dr. Patricia Bath
by Julia Finley Mosca

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Meet Dr. Bath — the scientist who never lost sight of her dreams! Growing up during the Civil Rights Movement, Patricia Bath was determined to become a doctor. Despite the racism, poverty, and sexism that threatened this goal, she persevered. With rhyming text and vivid pictures, The Doctor With An Eye For Eyes tells the inspiring story of the scientist who found a game-changing treatment for blindness. ~ African – Preschool


Mae Among the Stars
by Roda Ahmed

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Mae Among The Stars

“When Little Mae was a child, she dreamed of dancing in space. She imagined herself surrounded by billions of stars, floating, gliding, and discovering.” Based on the life of Mae Jemison, the first African American woman to travel in space, Mae Among The Stars tells the story of how Mae’s curiosity, intelligence, and determination, matched with her parents’ encouraging words, paved the way for her incredible success at NASA. ~ African – Preschool


Wangari’s Trees of Peace: A True Story from Africa
by Jeanette Winter

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Wangari's Trees of Peace

“People are fighting over water, over food…/ we plant the seeds of peace.” Wangari’s Trees of Peace tells the inspiring story of Kenyan environmentalist, Women’s Rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner Wangari Maathai. When Wangari returns home from studying in the US, she is shocked to see whole forests being cut down, so he starts planting trees and soon inspires great change. ~ African – Preschool

Related: 22 Multicultural Children’s Books for Earth Day



 


Elementary School


The Girl With a Mind for Math: The Story of Raye Montague
by Julia Finley Mosca

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: The Girl With A Mind For Math

After visiting a German submarine in the 1940s, young Raye is determined to become an engineer. Despite facing gender and racial discrimination along the way, the gifted mathematician persisted and gained her well-deserved recognition as a pioneer who changed the course of ship design forever. With rhyming text and cartoon-style illustrations, The Girl With a Mind for Math makes the remarkable story of Raye Montague accessible for young readers. ~ African – Elementary School

Related: 50+ Multicultural STEAM Books for Children


Shark Lady
by Jess Keating

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

This beautiful new picture book tells the inspiring story of brave ichthyologist Eugenie Cark. After seeing sharks at the aquarium for the first time in the early 1930’s, 9-year-old Eugenie decided to dedicate her life to studying them and sharing their beauty with the world. She went on to become an internationally respected scientific authority as well as a fierce advocate for the misunderstood predators, earning her the nickname “Shark Lady.” ~ Asian –  Elementary School


The Astronaut With a Song for the Stars: The Story of Dr. Ellen Ochoa
by Julia Finley Mosca

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

“If you have a mission, a dream to explore, but no one like you has achieved it before…”  Mexican-American Ellen dreamed of becoming a professional flutist, but all of that changed when she discovered engineering in college. Despite being told that field of study wasn’t for girls, the bright young scientist refused to give up — ultimately becoming a NASA astronaut who shattered barriers and rocketed to success! With rhyming text and vibrant illustrations, The Astronaut With A Song For The Stars is an inspiring picture book biography about the first Latina woman in space. ~ Hispanic – Elementary School

Related: Pura Belpré Award Winners 1996 – 2021


Vision of Beauty: The Story of Sarah Breedlove Walker
by Kathryn Lasky

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Vision of Beauty

Born just after slavery ended and orphaned at age seven, Sarah Breedlove Walker went on to become the richest African American woman of her time. Going bald as a young woman from years of poor nutrition and hard labour, she created a formula to restore the health of both hair and scalp and built her business into the Mme. C.J. Walker Manufacturing Company, one of the biggest companies in America. Rich in historical detail and with expressive illustrations, Visions of Beauty is the rags-to-riches tale of a powerful role model for girls and women of all races. ~ African – Elementary School


Hidden Figures: The True Story of Four Black Women and the Space Race
by Margot Lee Shetterly

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Hidden Figures

Math geniuses Dorothy Vaughan, Mary Jackson, Katherine Johnson, and Christine Darden played an essential role in some of NASA’s greatest successes. Overcoming gender and racial barriers, the four black women provided the calculations for America’s first journeys into space. Hidden Figures is the first picture book adaption of this true story that will inspire children to believe in themselves and follow their dreams.  ~ African – Elementary School


Katherine Johnson (You Should Meet)
by Thea Feldman

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Katherine Johnson

Meet Katherine Johnson, the brilliant mathematician whose unparalleled calculations (done by hand!) helped plan the trajectories for NASA’s Mercury and Apollo missions (including the Apollo 11 moon landing). Part of the “You Should Meet” series, this Level 3 Ready-To-Read biography teaches children about one of the greatest American minds of all time. Includes info on history and math, plus inspiring careers for math lovers. ~ African – Elementary School


Mae Jemison (You Should Meet)
by Laurie Calkhoven

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Mae Jemison

If your daughter is dreaming of blasting off into space, being a dancer or a doctor, she should meet Mae Jemison! Despite a lot of discouragement and discrimination, Mae Jemison became the first African American female astronaut. Part of the “You Should Meet” series, this Level 3 Ready-To-Read biography introduces young readers to the amazing achievements of this fascinating multi-talented woman. ~ African – Elementary School


Queen of Physics: How Wu Chien Shiung Helped Unlock the Secrets of the Atom
by Teresa Robeson

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

When Wu Chien Shiung was born in China 100 years ago, most girls did not attend school; no one considered them as smart as boys. But her parents felt differently. Giving her a name meaning “Courageous Hero,” they encouraged her love of learning and science. Award-winning Queen of Physics follows Wu Chien Shiung as she battles sexism and racism to become the first female instructor at Princeton University, the first female President of the American Physical Society, and the first scientist to have an asteroid named after her when she was still alive. ~ Asian – Elementary School

Related: 30 Asian & Asian American Children’s Books for Ages 0 to 18



 


A Computer Called Katherine
by Suzanne Slade 

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn’t have the same rights as others. She knew it was wrong that people thought women could only be teachers or nurses. And she proved everyone wrong by zooming ahead of her classmates, starting college at fifteen, and eventually joining NASA. Vibrantly illustrated A Computer Called Katherine is the inspiring true story of NASA mathematician Katherine Johnson whose calculations helped pioneer America’s first manned flight into space and to the moon. ~ African – Elementary School

Related: 30 Diverse Children’s Anthologies About Trailblazing Women


Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13
by Helaine Becker

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Young Katherine counted everything, from the steps up to church to the number of spoons she washed. Boundless, curious, and excited by calculations, she longed to know as much as she could about math and the universe. From Katherine’s early  beginnings as a gifted student to her heroic accomplishments at NASA, Counting on Katherine tells the bold story of the mathematical genius who made sure that Apollo 13 returned home safely.  ~ African – Elementary School


Maya Lin: Artist-Architect of Light and Lines
by Jeanne Walker Harvey

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Maya Lin

Bestselling Maya Lin tells the story of the bold artist-architect who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Starting with her childhood, young readers will learn that Maya loved exploring the forest in her backyard and building tiny towns out of paper and scraps. The daughter of a clay artist and a poet grew up with art and went from her first experiments with light and lines to nationwide success. ~ Asian – Elementary School

Related: 30 Asian & Asian American Children’s Books


Wangari Maathai: The Woman Who Planted Millions of Trees
by Franck Prévot

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Wangari Maathai

This beautiful picture book tells the story of Kenyan environmentalist and political activist Wangari Maathai. After studying in the US in the 1970s, she founded the Green Belt Movement in Kenya, a non-governmental organization focused on environmental conservation and women’s rights. Her NGO planted over thirty million trees in thirty years. Wangari Maathai received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2004. ~ African – Elementary School


The World Is Not a Rectangle: A Portrait of Architect Zaha Hadid
by Jeanette Winter

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: The World Is Not A Rectangle

Growing up in Baghdad, Iraq, Zaha Hadid dreamed of designing her own cities. After studying architecture in London, she opened her own studio but as a Muslim woman faced many obstacles. Determined to succeed, she went on to design buildings all over the world. With engaging illustrations and simple text, The World Is Not A Rectangle tells of the architect’s life and her triumph over adversity. ~ Asian – Elementary School


Sweet Dreams, Sarah
by Vivian Kirkfield

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

After the abolition of slavery, Sarah E. Goode opened her own furniture. She soon recognized the need for multifunctional furniture for her poorer customers who didn’t have much space. With hard work and determination, Sarah succeeded in inventing her unique cupboard bed and getting it patented. Sweet Dreams, Sarah is the inspiring story of one of the first African-American women to get a U.S. patent. ~ African – Elementary School

Related: 80 Picture Book Biographies About Bold Black Women & Girls


Born Curious: 20 Girls Who Grew Up to Be Awesome Scientists
by Martha Freeman

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Why do galaxies spin the way they do? What’s the best kind of house for a Komodo dragon? Can you cure malaria with medicine made from a plant? The scientists and mathematicians in Born Curious sought answers to these and many other fascinating questions. The twenty groundbreaking women featured came from all kinds of backgrounds and had all kinds of life experiences. Some grew up rich, some poor. Some were always the smartest kid in class, some struggled to do well in school. But they were all born curious. ~ Diverse – Elementary School

Related: 30 Diverse Children’s Anthologies About Trailblazing Women


Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World
by Rachel Ignotofsky

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Women in Science

Voted Best Science Book of 2016, Women in Science highlights the contributions of fifty notable women to STEM fields. Although only ten out of the fifty featured scientists are women of colour, it is still an amazing, strikingly illustrated resource that will inspire young girls to pursue careers in science.  Includes a timeline, statistics, infographics, and an illustrated scientific glossary. ~ Diverse – Elementary School

Women in Science: 100 Postcards

Related: 32 Multicultural Picture Books About Strong Female Role Models



 


Middle School


May Chinn : The Best Medicine
by Ellen Butts

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: May Chinn

This inspiring book chronicles the life of May Chinn who succeeded against the odds to become one of the first African American female doctors in the U.S. May Chinn tells of the doctor’s childhood in New York City through to her 50 years as a medical practitioner and researcher. A fascinating read that teaches children about May Chinn’s struggles and accomplishments in the world of science. ~ African – Middle School


Hidden Figures Young Readers’ Edition
by Margot Lee Shetterly

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Hidden Figures

Hidden Figures tells the amazing true story of four African American female mathematicians at NASA. Known as “human computers”,  they helped achieve some of the greatest moments in the US’s space program by calculating the numbers that would launch rockets into space. ~ African – Middle School

Related: 26 Multicultural Picture Books about Inspiring Women & Girls


Path to the Stars: My Journey from Girl Scout to Rocket Scientist
by Sylvia Acevedo

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

A meningitis outbreak in their underprivileged neighborhood left Sylvia Acevedo’s family forever altered. As she struggled in the aftermath of loss, young Sylvia’s life transformed when she joined the Brownies. The Girl Scouts taught her how to take control of her world and nourished her love of numbers and science. Path To The Stars is the inspiring memoir of the first Latina to graduate with a master’s in engineering from Stanford University and go on to become a rocket scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory. ~ Hispanic – Middle School

Related: Pura Belpré Award Winners 1996 – 2021


Maya Lin: Thinking with Her Hands
by Susan Goldman Rubin

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM: Maya Lin

Another fascinating book about the artist-architect who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, this one for older readers. With well-researched text and lots of beautiful photos, Maya Lin is an accessible biography that tells the story of the architect, from her struggle to stick with her vision of the memorial to the wide variety of works she has created since then. ~ Asian – Middle School


101 Black Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics

by L.A. Amber

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

101 Black Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics honours extraordinary Black women who pushed past the bounds of human knowledge and broke down the thought barriers of their time, from the 1800s to today. Beyond a Black History book, this amazing book will spark curiosity and motivate children to learn more about STEM related topics while making them proud of their heritage. Includes an exploration journal. ~ African – Middle School



 


Black Women in Science: A Black History Book for Kids
by PhD Kimberley Brown Pellum

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Throughout history, Black women have blazed trails across the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Black Women in Science features 15 powerful stories of fearless female scientists that advanced their STEM fields and fought to build a legacy, from Bessie Coleman to Katherine Johnson, Mamie Phipps Clark, and many more. ~ African – Middle School

Related: 55 Multicultural Picture Books About Strong Female Role Models


Galaxy Girls: 50 Amazing Stories of Women in Space
by Libby Jackson

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

From Ada Lovelace in the 19th century to the “coloured computers” behind the Apollo missions, from the astronauts breaking records on the International Space Station to the scientific pioneers blazing the way to Mars, Galaxy Girls celebrates the often little known achievements of over forty extraordinary women from around the globe. Written by Libby Jackson, a leading British expert in human space flight, and illustrated with striking artwork from the students of London College of Communication, this book will fire the imaginations of trailblazers of all ages. ~ Diverse – Middle School


Reaching for the Moon: The Autobiography of NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson
by Katherine Johnson

As a young girl, Katherine Johnson showed an exceptional aptitude for math. In school she quickly skipped ahead several grades and was soon studying complex equations with the support of a professor who saw great promise in her. But growing up in an era of brutal racism and sexism, Katherine faced daily challenges. In the early 1950s, Katherine managed to join the organization that would become NASA. She worked on many of NASA’s biggest projects including the Apollo 11 mission that landed the first men on the moon. Reaching for the Moon is a captivating autobiography that will inspire young readers everywhere. ~ African – Middle School


Changing the Equation: 50+ US Black Women in STEM
by Tonya Bolden

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Changing The Equation takes a look at Black women who have changed the world of STEM in America. From groundbreaking computer scientists, doctors, and inventors, to physicists, pharmacists, mathematicians, and many more, this book celebrates over fifty women who have shattered the glass ceiling, defied racial discrimination, and pioneered in their fields. ~ African – Middle School


Women in Space: 23 Stories of First Flights, Scientific Missions, and Gravity-Breaking Adventures
by Karen Bush Gibson

Multicultural Children's Books About Women In STEM

Women in Space profiles twenty-three pioneers from around the world, including Mae Jemison (the first Black woman in space), Ellen Ochoa (the first Hispanic woman in space), and Chiaki Mukai (the first Asian woman in space). Their inspiring stories demonstrate the vital role women have played — and continue to play — in the quest for scientific understanding. ~ Diverse – Middle School


*You can buy any of the books on this site from Amazon USA by clicking on the book titles or covers*



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One Response

  1. Diane Margelowsky
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    Great line up.. I am ordering some of these for my daughters.

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