Friday, August 28, 2015

Now This Is an Alphabet Book!

When I came across a book titled Rad American Women, I wondered if it could really live up to it's name.  Well, no problem there!  The women profiled in this book include punk rockers, migrant workers and artists.  Role models can come from so many different places and I love that the idea of being smart, capable and courageous is what makes us rad!

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Title: Rad American Women A-Z

Author: Kate Schatz

Target: Grades 3-7

Series: No

What this book is about: 
This book profiles strong, heroic American women who made an impact on the lives of the people around them.  There is a woman for each letter of the alphabet and starts with Angela Davis who fought out against racism and sexism and ends with Zora Neale Hurston, an anthropologist and author.  Most of these women will be unknown to your children, but they were courageous and impactful.  Schatz includes women of color, and almost every ethnicity.  She includes a transgender woman who is educating others against bullying through her international books and plays.  There is even a profile on Carol Burnett who changed the face of women in comedy on television.

Why I love this book: 
There are so many women who have fought unheralded throughout the ages.  These women may not be attractive in the conventional sense, they don’t often come from money and their causes are not glamorous so they get little attention.  Schatz has changed that and celebrates their strength and perseverance, all qualities we hope for in our daughters.

The artwork by Mirian Stahl is bold and graphic and absolutely fits the mood of the stories.  There is nothing preachy here and Stach does a wonderful job of simply presenting us with the facts from these women’s incredible lives.

Who this book is for: 
I have targeted it third grade and up because the format of a two page spread with drawing on one page and description on the next makes this an easy read for kids.  However you need to have discussed or be willing to discuss issues of racism, sexism, gender identification and the meaning of gay with your kids if you give them this book.

Final thoughts: 
I would love to see more of these women represented on Famous American day in Third Grade.  I am happy to report my daughter did the woman representing the letter N - Nellie Bly for her report several years ago.  She was the first female investigative reporter and while our teachers hadn’t heard of her then, they have now!

To purchase this book:
Click on the following link to connect to Amazon: Rad American Women A-Z: Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries who Shaped Our History . . . and Our Future! (City Lights/Sister Spit)  A portion of each purchase goes to support this blog at no cost to you.  Thank you for your support.

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