Updated: May 17
Females are the future in the science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields. In 1970, women accounted for just 8% of the STEM workforce. By 2019, that figure had increased more than three times to 27%.
While significant improvement is clear, men are still dominating STEM fields. The good news is that women can close this gap by inspiring a new generation of scientists and engineers.
Books are one of the most effective ways to draw interest from young, talented girls. Read on to learn about books for girls that will empower them to reach for the stars. Explore how reading inspires girls in science and pushes them toward a career in a STEM field.
Rocket Girls is a series of fictional books covering fascinating science topics. For example, in Rocket Girls: Sam Gold and the Case of the Missing Uranium, the female protagonist is in a bitter competition for a lab tech selection. When uranium goes missing, the entire school is at risk until Sam goes on the case.
The second book in the series is called Rocket Girls: All That Glitters Isn't Gold. Here, Sam learns first-hand lessons about precious metals and jewels. She faces a difficult dilemma when she uncovers her friend's bracelet is not really gold.
Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World
Young girls need to draw inspiration from the women who paved their path. Rachel Ignotofsky is the author of Women in Science.
She shares the stories of 50 female trailblazers that accomplished great feats in the STEM community. There are a lot of things to like about this book.
For starters, you do not need to read it from front to back. Instead, you can focus on one interesting woman at a time to keep the reader’s interest.
The book Women in Science also covers many different fields and accomplishments. This is effective in inspiring girls to pursue many different science careers.
Another thing to like about the book is that it includes illustrations. This is going to help keep the interest of younger readers. Women in Science works as a coffee table book as well when readers are simply scanning through.
There is an age-old gender stereotype that men are handy and women are not. This erroneous image places men in the garage and women in the kitchen.
The book entitled Girls Garage seeks to rectify this image. It is geared toward teenage girls who are now old enough to take on home projects both small and large.
Getting your hands dirty at an early age is a great way to direct a young girl to a STEM field like engineering. This is especially true for a girl who enjoys problem-solving and working directly with their hands.
At a minimum, Girls Garage is a practical handbook for women who do not want to rely on men to fix every little thing. Here, women can learn how to find studs under a sheetrock surface or make a dog house from scratch.
You know a book is good when Hollywood adapts the story into a major blockbuster film. This is the case with Hidden Figures, the story of four African-American women who became NASA legends. The movie went on to receive an Oscar nomination for best picture.
These four women helped get the first American successfully into space. They were mathematicians and engineers during a time when many women did not get these opportunities. Katherine Johnson, Mary Jackson, Christine Darden, and Dorothy Vaughan made the most of their chances.
Few things inspire like a tale of battling adversity and achieving success. Naturally, the book is more detailed than the movie and is certain to leave a positive impact on young female readers.
Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women
Without female inventors, today’s world would not be nearly as advanced or enjoyable as it is. Girls Think of Everything takes young readers through the many contributions made by women.
Everyday items like windshield wipers were invented by women. By the end of this book, young girls will be motivated to create their own inventions.
Ada Twist, Scientist
Young children and teenagers are quick to tell their parents about problems. Few kids try to solve the problem on their own.
In Ada Twist, Scientist, the young protagonist undertakes a scientific journey to find the source of a bad odor. She investigates and performs scientific experiments to find the smell.
There are many reasons why this fictional story is so popular. For starters, the main character is a young African-American girl.
Not only is she empowering other young girls, but also minorities that are underrepresented in STEM fields. For example, just 9% of STEM positions are filled by African-Americans. This imaginative tale shows minorities that they can pursue STEM careers as well.
Cause-and-effect is one cool topic explored in the book. When our young scientist asks questions, it is not uncommon for her investigation to result in more questions.
Lastly, this is a quick and easy read for a younger reader. It appeals to the reader’s imagination without saturating them with too many facts and details.
Radioactive! How Irene Curie and Lisa Meitner Revolutionized Science and Changed the World
Did you know that women were instrumental in the discovery of nuclear energy and the nuclear bomb? Many people think of Albert Einstein and the Manhattan Project when they talk about the development of nuclear weapons.
This nonfiction story is set in the 1930s and follows Curie and Meitner’s work as physicists in a male-dominated field. These two trailblazers break the glass ceiling of this era to make a historical contribution to science.
Nuclear energy now gives hundreds of millions of people cheap and clean power. If Curie and Meitner can make such a revolutionary impact, any young girl can make a similar contribution.
Rosie Revere, Engineer
To inspire the next generation of female STEM workers, you need to start young. Author Andrea Beaty published the picture book Rosie Revere, Engineer, to appeal to kindergartners and up to 3rd grade.
Rosie’s goal is a noble one; to create a flying contraption. She fails when her device is only able to hover. However, the book has a positive message in that scientific failures are considered progress.
Your Guide to Empowering Books for Girls
Science classes at school are not enough to inspire the next generation of female STEM workers. Instead, parents and educators should encourage young women to read books about STEM.
There are so many inspirational books that deliver this message. Rocket Girls is the latest in a series of inspirational books for female readers. If you want to shop for books for girls, order the latest Rocket Girl books from our webpage.