Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Calling All Engineers (Girls, especially!)

It is always a challenge to find science picture books focused on physical science concepts, so you can imagine my excitement when I wandered into our local bookstore with a dear friend and happened upon Rosie Revere, Engineer, by Andrea Beaty. I almost gave a little shriek of excitement as I pulled it off the shelf and started reading.

While the book doesn't really address concepts associated with physical science, it clearly both addresses the fear (and inevitability) of failure and breaks down the gender based biases associated with engineering in the context of a not-over-the-top fictional story. In fact, Beaty pays homage to Rosie the Riveter, who is, of course, the great Aunt of the main character...and the one who urges young Rosie to live out her designing dreams.

While I will admit being a little disappointed that the one-paragraph author's note was buried on the last page amidst the dedication and copyright information.  It does, however, provide a bit of information about the role of women in WWII. Also of interest is a 2-page spread containing sketches of important events in women's aviation history--and the "machines" that accompanied each (first woman to fly in a hot air balloon, first woman to design airplanes, first woman to pilot a Boeing 747...). 

This seems like the perfect book for creative young minds--and girls in particular. And, if you have a young female engineer, the book could be a perfect companion for a new award-winning "toy" designed to get more girls involved in the STEM fields-- GoldieBlox. Both are worth a look!


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