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31+ STEM Books to Inspire Girls

31+ STEM Books to Inspire Girls

Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on Tuesday, which found that 15-year-old girls around the world, outperform boys in science – except for in the United States, Britain and Canada. via The Guardian

Breaking down theNational Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) scores by gender, girls averaged 151 points (out of a possible 300), three points higher than for boys in the first-ever Technology and Engineering Literacy (TEL) assessment was given in 2014. via The Atlantic

So what is it? Girls are better than boys at science? Or girls are worse at science? Or girls in higher socio-economic brackets outperform boys?

What’s the end goal? Karen Peterson, the chief executive of the National Girls Collaborative Project, says  it’s to “increase their persistence and resilience in STEM studies so that those early kernels of interest translate into meaningful careers.”

As a mom of two girls, I am of the opinion that it’s the parents’ job to pay attention to where the child leads you. For my oldest, her path is towards art school. For my middle daughter, a STEM career mixed with an entrepreneur’s drive seems likely. And yet, the big thinkers at RISD think they very well will end up at the same place. For what is STEM without creativity?

If you peruse the timeline of female scientists and their picture book biographies, one thing is clear. If someone really wants a career in science, she’s not going to let anything stop her. Here’s to the progress women have made in science, and here’s to supporting all girls as they find their passion in life.

What are your favorite STEM books that inspire girls? Thanks for sharing!

STEM Picture Books for Girls

Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty

Life might have its failures, but this was not it.

The only true failure can come if you quit.

Rosie is an closet inventor after she thought her cheese hat python deterrent hat was ridiculed. She uses the hat with some tweaks into a flying contraption for her aunt and learns that failure is the problem solving tool of an engineer. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts

Ada didn’t speak until she turned three, but when she did, she was full of questions, especially about why? Turns out, she has all the traits and the heart of a great scientist (though she’s also an exhausting kid to raise!). [picture book, ages 4 and up]

The Most Magnificent Thing by Ashley Spires

A little girl has an amazing idea that she’s going to make the most magnificent thing! All she has to do is make it. But making her magnificent thing leads down a frustrating path of trial and error. This book best reflects–Inspiration + motivation + passion = Endless possibilities. The girl’s emotional journey reminds a child not to quit. [picture book ages 3 and up]

Read more…

Dr. Seuss Museum Oh The Places They Don't Go

Dr. Seuss Museum Invite then Crickets

I wanted to share some of the correspondence that I’ve had with Dr. Seuss Museum’s Director of Public Relations and Marketing, Karen Fisk. It started after this AP article was published and I was included in the AP video.

Oh the Places You’ll Go! Dr. Seuss museum opens its doors Associated Press

“The first national museum dedicated to the beloved children’s author and illustrator Dr. Seuss has opened in his hometown of Springfield, Mass. But Theodore Geisel’s early controversial political illustrations are conspicuously absent.” (June 5)AP

Karen Fisk contacted me to invite me to visit.

 

May 25, 2017

Hi Mia,

I wanted to say hello and reach out to see if you would like to visit the Dr. Seuss Museum as my guest. Please let me know.

We have not yet completed the work we are doing to acknowledge and discuss the work Theodor Geisel did that you address in your most recent column, but we know it is important and complicated and needs to be discussed.  We intend to have programming and literature on the subject.

Hope to hear from you soon,

Karen

Karen Fisk

Director of Public Relations & Marketing

Springfield Museums & Dr. Seuss National Memorial Sculpture Garden Read more…

Diverse Children's Books

#DiverseKidLit Socioeconomic Diversity

Our theme for this #DiverseKidLit is socioeconomic diversity. Kids from all economic brackets should be able to find themselves in books – as well as to learn about the lives of others in different economic situations. (As always, the theme is only a suggestion. Diverse posts on alternate topics are always welcome.)

What Is #DiverseKidLit?

Diverse Children’s Books is a book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

We encourage everyone who shares to support this blogging community by visiting and leaving comments for at least three others. Please also consider following the hosts on at least one of their social media outlets. Spread the word using #diversekidlit and/or adding our button to your site and your diverse posts.

DiverseKidLit

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Baby & Boxing Announcements

Baby & Boxing Announcements

Thank you to Basic Invite for sponsoring this post. My opinions, as always, are my own.

My boxing trainer is not a man of many words and doesn’t tend to share details of his private life so it’s up to me and my mom friends who have been training with him for over five years to extract this information.

Mia Wenjen and Marc Gargaro at Nonantum Boxing Club

Typically, we train in small groups of two or three, occasionally ramping up to five. Once in a while, though, it’s just one lonesome person. That was me last week. On my own for a one hour private lesson. It’s a great learning opportunity, but I like and need the rest period that one or two other compatriots provide. Read more…

New Back to School Picture Books GIVEAWAY!

New Back to School Picture Books GIVEAWAY!

Is it time to get back into the swing of school? Hopefully, not just yet! We have a few more weeks of summer and I hope you do too. But, it’s IS a good time to talk about school starting to ease any anxieties. These five books do the trick.

How about you? What are your favorite back to school traditions or books? Thanks for sharing!

p.s. A few more Back to School book lists here:

Top 10 Diversity Starting School Books

Top 10 Starting School Picture Books

Books for Back to School Issues

 

New Back to School Picture Books GIVEAWAY!

A New School Year: Stories in Six Voices by Sally Derby, illustrated by Mika Song

Six kids in grades kindergarten through fifth grade start school with anxieties and fears. Ethan, a kindergartener, hides something in his pocket for comfort. Zach in first grade worries about learning everything over again. Katie frets that her new teacher in second grade isn’t her old teacher in first grade. Jackie isn’t the only third grader to get dropped off early. Fourth grader Carlos wonders if he will make new friends. Fifth grade Mia has hearing aids that almost make her late. As each child navigates the first day of school, their free verse poems show how everything turns out fine. [free verse poetry picture book, ages 5 and up]

Read more…

Filipino-American Children's Books & GIVEAWAY

Filipino-American Children’s Books & GIVEAWAY

Mika Song and Isabel Roxas have teamed up to come up with Filipino and Filipino-American Children’s books which are few and far between. I only know one picture book, Cora Makes Pancit by Dorina K. Lazo Gilmore, illustrated by Kristi Valiant.

I recently read See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng with my son. This required rising 7th grade fiction middle grade chapter book subtly includes the reference that the main character, 11-year-old Alex Petroski, is half Filipino by way of his mother. This is a road trip coming of age story of a boy in search of many different kinds of truths, and finds unlikely friendships along the way. I like how the story isn’t about being Filipino but is another dimension of the story.

Mika has a new book out from Charlesbridge Publishing and we are giving away a copy! We are also giving away two bilingual picture books illustrated by Isabel Roxas: Mang Andoy’s Signs and Araw Sa Palengke. Please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter. There will be three winners, one for each book.

A New School Year: Six Stories in Six Voices by Sally Derby, illustrated by Mika Song

Meet six diverse kids from grades Kindergarten through fifth grade who are entering a new school year. They are both nervous and excited at what the first day will bring. Mika Song captures their hopes, dreams and fears with simple and engaging illustrations. [picture book, ages 5 and up]

Mang Andoy’s Signs by Mailin Paterno, illustrated by Isabel Roxas

A Philippine Children’s Book with dual language:Filipino and English. The art of persuasion is delightfully revealed in Mailin Paterno’s richly nuanced urban tale, illustrated with charm and zest of Isabel Roxas. Children will be all wiser to learn how you ask is just important as what you ask for. [bilingual Tagalog/English picture book, ages 4 and up]

Araw Sa Palengke by May Tobias-Papa, illustrated by  Isabel Roxas

I’m coming with Nanay! We’re going to the market. What would we see there? Who would I meet? Come, join us! Today is market day! Sasama ako kay Nanay! [bilingual Tagalog/English picture book, ages 4 and up]

How about you? Can you help us add to this list? Thanks!

 

Filipino and Filipino-American Children’s Books

Bahay Kubo illustrated by  Pergylene Acuña

This was one of my daughter’s favorite board books- she loved the silly vegetable characters and it’s a fun folk song to belt out. – Mika Song

[board book in Tagalog, ages 6 months and up]

Mang Andoy’s Signs by Mailin Paterno Illustrations by Isabel Roxas

A neat picture book full of charming Manila street scenes (hand-painted signs, street food and modes of transportation) that capture the ingenuity and nature of the people. – Mika Song

[bilingual English and Tagalog picture book, ages 3 and up]

Read more…

#AmWriting Sumo Joe revisions with editor

New Voices Competition #AmWriting

If you haven’t been following my progress with my first picture book submission, I entered a New Voices children’s book publishing contest. I didn’t win, but I received an offer for editorial assistance on my book manuscript, Sumo Joe.

My First Picture Book Submission: Sumo Joe! #AmWriting

I jumped on that offer. I’d been trying to get into a critique group where I live but I haven’t been successful so far. The established one at my local library merged with another group, and I’m on the waitlist for what seems like a very long time. The SCBWI critique book folded the first time I was supposed to attend. I was considering hiring editorial help for polishing my manuscripts, so it was gift from the gods to get this offer of help.

Lee and Low New Voices Award
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Summer Reading List for ages 8 and up (part 2 of 2)

Summer Chapter Book Reading List GIVEAWAY (part 2 of 2)

I’ve been “book tasting” or sampling two dozen or so middle grade chapter books to find books for my 12 year old son. I’m also reading for myself, trying to discover that possible Newbery gem in these piles.

From this list, I’m narrowing down my reading pile to:

  • Lemons by Melissa Savage (getting buzz)
  • A Boy Called Bat by Elana K. Arnold (for possible autism list I’m working on)
  • Zinnia and the Bees by Danielle Davis (I do like magical realism)
  • Kid Beowulf: The Song of Roland by Alexis E. Fajardo (my son likes graphic novels and I’m also going to add to my Medieval/Middle Ages book list; a period of history that is growing on me)
  • Mabel Opal Pear and the Rules for Spying by Amanda Hosch (I have a spy/superhero chapter book list that I can add this one to)
  • A Dog Like Daisy by Kristin O’Donnell Tubb (I might make a service dog book list)

How about you? What middle grade books are you loving right now?

p.s. I’m giving away 6 of these books. Please fill out the Rafflecopter at the bottom to enter.

p.p.s. Part 1 of this list here.

 

Summer Reading List for ages 8 and up & GIVEAWAY (part 2 of 2)

Race to the Bottom of the Sea by Lindsay Eager

I loved Hour of the Bees so I’m excited to read Lindsay Eager’s newest book that has a breezier feel than the slight melancholic heaviness of Hour of the Bees. 11 year old Fidelia Quail becomes an orphan where her parents are killed in a submarine of her own invention and now it’s up to her to escape a pirate who has kidnapped her, and figure of the mystery of a treasure he’s desperate to find on the bottom of the ocean. This book feels a little like Half Magic meets The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate. [chapter book, ages 8 and up]

Lemons by Melissa Savage

There seems to be a growing buzz for Lemons, Melissa Savage’s debut chapter book. It’s 53 chapters of about 6 pages each. I personally find short chapters appealing because the pacing tends to be fast and thus hold my son’s interest. Nearly 11 years old Lemonade Liberty (Lem for short) is moving to a tiny town to live with her grandfather after her mother dies. It’s here that she makes a new friend who is determined to capture Bigfoot on film. This book reminds me of The True Meaning of Smekday thus far. I’m excited to read further. [chapter book, ages 8 and up]

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Where Are All The Wheelchairs in Children's Books? GIVEAWAY

Where Are the Wheelchairs in Children’s Books? 3 Book GIVEAWAY

My 15-year-0ld daughter, PickyKidPix, has been working for a year to get our dog to pass the therapy dog test through Pets and People.

therapy dog training

Her goal is to do library dog volunteer work with him. She signed up for about ten dog training sessions and our dog made great progress. She even practiced at home with him.

The issue is that our dog can do all of the different components of the test, but just not at the same time:

training dog as therapy dog Read more…