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March is Women’s History Month, and it’s a great time to learn about and celebrate women through time who have made a big difference in our world.  The list of influential leaders, innovators, artists, and scientists is interesting and lengthy, and days on end can be spent studying these women and their legacies.  Queen Elizabeth, Marie Cure, Cleopatra, Georgia O’Keefe, Toni Morrison, Sally Ride, and more are certainly worth the time and effort!

 

Celebrating Women Today

But how about this? Every student is surrounded by women who make a difference in the world, large and small.  How great would it be for students really to consider the importance of women’s contributions in their own world?  How invaluable for them to understand first-hand the impact of women here and now?

Ask your students to think about the women they know and to select one they truly admire.  Then have them interview that woman.  Use these questions as a guide:

  • What work do you do, whether in or out of the home?
  • How did you learn to do your work?
  • What are you most proud of in your work?
  • What do you think of as your biggest achievements?
  • How do you think you make a difference in the world?

Share and Grow

Students should write or record the interview.  Then, with the answers in mind, ask them to create a project of any kind that depicts the woman and why she makes a difference.  (Of course, many students may be tempted to say, “She’s makes a difference because she loves me.”  (This is wonderful, but students should be gently steered from this very personal response to something a bit more global.)  The project might be a sculpture, diorama, book jacket, essay, poem—you name it!  Then, have a presentation day in which students share about the woman they interviewed and present their projects for all to enjoy.

The great thing about this activity—and what is really at the heart of Women’s History month—is helping students to understand that women are valuable contributors to the world in countless ways, and young girls today have before them a wide open vista of possibilities for their own life paths.

 Your Turn!

Who have been your greatest female influences and inspirations in the work you do?  Tell us about them!