March is Women’s History Month. Each year, International Women’s Day (March 8) is also part of the celebration. The month offers educators and students a great opportunity to dig deeper into the contributions, struggles and triumphs of women throughout history.
The National Women’s History Project is a great place to begin. Here students can explore the theme “Nevertheless, she Persisted: Honoring Women who Fight All Forms Of Discrimination Against Women.” There are many great resources available for teachers for including women’s history in their lessons and for discussing gender roles and stereotypes with their students.
- TeachingHistory.org’s Women’s History Resources: This is a one-stop shop for diving deep into Women’s History Month. Teachers will find lesson plans, learning resources, and printables to use in the classroom.
- Online Exhibits from the National Women’s History Museum – Let students learn about women’s history through these interactive digital exhibits and corresponding lesson plans. The NWHM also has a variety of valuable resources such as biographies and interactives.
- EDSITEment Women’s History Resources – These resources were created by the National Endowment for the Humanities and include lesson plans and teaching materials that focus on women in politics, the arts and civil service. These plans include worksheets, links to reading and resources, and highlight the time and topics that are required.
- Women’s History Resources For Teachers: This resource from the Library of Congress encourages students and teachers to “put primary resources to use in the classroom.” It also includes lesson plans. You will also find audio and video resources, extensive primary source collections, as well as a variety of photo projects. The official Women’s History Month page may be of interest to you.
- Science NetLinks Women’s History Collection – This collection contains interesting lesson plans that focus on women in STEM fields. This page contains science lesson plans for students of all ages and teaching resources. Teachers can also filter the results by grade level and find great science-specific links that will help them create lesson plans.
- ReadWriteThink’s Women’s History Educators will find thoughtful lesson plan ideas, a list with links to online resources for women’s histories, and suggestions for after-school activities for teaching women’s historical history to parents. For grades 3-12, there are lesson plans that have been prepared by teachers.
DISCUSS GENDER ROLES and STEREOTYPES IN CLASS
Maureen Costello makes a point in The Problem With Women’s History Month From Teaching Tolerance about the importance of adding context. It’s easy to focus on influential women, but Women’s History Month can also be a great time for students to challenge gender stereotypes, and to question societal norms. These lessons and resources are age-appropriate, so educators can approach these topics in a way that is developmentally appropriate. These resources are for elementary, middle, and high school students.
- Thinking Outside the Box: Brainstorming about Gender Stereotypes and Teaching Tolerance (Grades 5-5)
- Women’s History Month Resource, Anti-Defamation League Grades K-12
- The Hunger Games Gender Empowerment Plan, Center for Healthy Teen Relationships (6-12).
- Lessons on Gender Expression , Teaching Tolerance (Grades 5-5)
- She Said/He Said: Analyzing Gender Roles Through Dialogue. ReadWriteThink (Grades 6-8)
READING LISTS and ADDITIONAL COLLECTIONS – STUDENTS
Many great books and online resources are available on women’s history. These reading lists, as well as additional resource collections, can spark curiosity in your classrooms.
- Women’s History Teaching Resources Smithsonian Education
- Women’s History Resources Zinn Education Project
- A collection of teaching resources for WHM and Scholastic teachers
- The Origins of Women’s History Month History
- Women’s History Lesson Plans, Share My Lesson
- The Best History Sites for WHM EdTechTeacher
- Women’s History Month Reading List, Reading Rockets