3 Ways to Celebrate National Women’s History Month in the Classroom

Cross Country Education
March 06, 2023 10:37 AM (GMT-04:00)
Educator Resources

March is Women's History Month, which presents the opportunity to celebrate the essential roles of women in our country's history and educate our youth who will become future trailblazers.

We've gathered numerous topics from various resources for teachers and administrators to utilize in the classroom to engage and teach students of all ages about the importance of women in history.

1: Women in Science and Technology

Women have significantly contributed to the progress in science and technology throughout U.S. history, even with tremendous obstacles. Hence, the reason why it's so important to bring their accomplishments into the classroom. The Library of Congress tells us, "Throughout history, women in science and technology struggled with gender-based discrimination and exclusion. Many of their contributions were downplayed, concealed or attributed to male collaborators."

The Library of Congress is a wonderful resource for teachers as it "offers classroom materials and professional development to help teachers effectively use primary sources from the Library's vast digital collections in their teachings." We highly recommend their subject matter and lesson plans throughout the school year.

Here are some suggestions for teachers to incorporate women in science and technology into their curriculum this month:

  • Choose a photograph from the site's vast library for students to analyze.
    • Different students or groups can analyze multiple photos.
    • They can compare it to pictures of male scientists.
    • They can discover how these scientists are portrayed differently
  • Select a few items in various formats, such as a newspaper article, a video, and a photograph, and allow time for students to analyze them, either alone or with a partner.
    • Ask students to compare how these women are portrayed in the media.
    • What language is used to describe them?
    • How are the images framed?
    • What was the intended message?
    • How do these portrayals compare to current news stories about women in science or technology?
    • What information do these portrayals leave out?

2: Women and the Right to Vote

The 19th Amendment is perfect for kids to explore and learn about since it was such a massive triumph for women in history. EDSITEment offers free resources for teachers, students, and parents searching for high-quality K-12 humanities education materials and shares unique ideas. What's nice about EDSITEment is their lesson plans are designed with age in mind.

 EDSITEment  delivers a summary of Women’s History Month and shares this excellent video from the National Women's History Museum, which teaches how International Women's Day became a week and then an entire month in the United States. Videos are always good visuals for the classroom and keep kids engaged.

EDSITEment offers compelling questions for 6th-12th graders about the long road to women's suffrage rights and activity ideas for teaching this topic across U.S. history.

  • Why was there resistance to granting women the right to vote?
  • What role did race or other factors play in the fight for women's suffrage?
  • Why were suffragists finally successful in achieving the right to vote?

As a suggestion for student activities, EDSITEment mentions constructing a digital timeline, using storyboards, recorded voiceovers, and images to construct a response to a compelling question while addressing change over time.

3. Specific Women Who Made an Impact on History

While this is a broad topic, it makes sense as we turn our attention to younger students.

 Sign Up Genius has fantastic age-appropriate projects to celebrate Women's History Month that kids can work on in the classroom and at home. Kids can choose their subjects based on what interests them and inspires them the most. Here are a few ideas the site provides for teachers:

  • Create an in-school museum
    • Have each student choose an important historical female figure and create a poster about her accomplishments.
    • Decide on a presentation day and invite parents or students from another class to walk around your classroom and learn about history-making women.
  • Letters
    • Have each student write a letter from the perspective of a famous historical woman of their choice, explaining to your class what they believe and who they are.
  • Who Am I?
    • After learning about different historical women, place an index card on each student's back with the name of a woman you've covered in class.
    • To discover who they are, they must ask the students around them yes or no questions.

Teachers can encourage their students to commemorate and celebrate women's contributions to history and culture, which have often been overlooked. When we educate our kids about the trailblazing women who broke barriers despite tremendous roadblocks, we inspire young students to dream big and become pioneers for future generations.

For more great tips, tricks, and tools for classroom success, additional resources, employment opportunities, and more, visit CrossCountryEducation.com.

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