Some new extremely insightful picture book biographies that will appeal to grades 3-5. (BTW – I value this type of picture book as much as I do children in these grades reading chapter books. There’s so much critical thinking that can be done with these texts.) Book talk these books and then display in the classroom library. I think if we are excited enough–students will grab them off the shelf! These would also make for great reading aloud with student-led discussions and many could be used as part of a Next Generation Science Standards unit of study. If students read them independently, there’s lots of room for written response to higher level thinking questions especially related to perseverance in the face of obstacles.
I’ve linked the reviews I’ve written on Goodreads which include suggestions for instruction and higher level thinking questions.
Notice too – lots of titles about STRONG WOMEN!
MY FAVORITE of all of these is Solving the Puzzle Under the Sea by Robert Burleigh.
Fearless Flyer: Ruth Law and Her Flying Machine by Heather Lang
Tiny Stitches: The Life of Medical Pioneer Vivien Thomas by Gwendolyn Hooks – The story of Vivien Thomas – an African American who made significant strides in medical technique but was not recognized for this because of racism.
Mountain Chef by Annette Bay Pimental about a Chinese American trail chef who played a major role in persuading key players to fund the National Park Service. Humorous and poignant.
Miss Mary Reporting: The True Story of Sportswriter Mary Garber by Sue Macy about another woman immersed in a male dominated field who persists and has a real impact.
I Dissent: Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark by Debbie Levy. LOVED the vocabulary in this book.
Ira’s Shakespeare Dream by Glenda Armand about Ira Aldridge, an African American, who became a leading actor in Shakespeare plays in the 19th century. Very interesting!
Hope this helps. If your students write responses to any of these books, I’d love to read their writing!!!!