Happy Women’s History Month! Celebrated during March, this event is observed in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Additionally, International Women’s Day is March 8, which has been observed in some way since 1911 and was officially commemorated by the United Nations in 1975.
Women’s History Month is also another great opportunity to recognize public school educators. As of 2018-19, just over 76% of public school teachers are women. In 2019-20, newly certified educators—from counselors to librarians, to reading specialists and superintendents—were also majority women.
Curious how Women’s History Month started and why it’s in March? This article from CNN goes through a quick breakdown of its history. In short, in the 1970s, various groups started by celebrating Women’s History Week, and as the movement grew, people began lobbying for a more official observance.
For this year’s observance, the White House has issued a proclamation, stating, in part, “Throughout American history, women and girls have made vital contributions, often in the face of discrimination and undue hardship. Courageous women marched for and won the right to vote, campaigned against injustice, shattered countless barriers, and expanded the possibilities of American life.” Furthermore, the Library of Congress, National Archives and Records Administration, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Gallery of Art, National Park Service, Smithsonian Institution, and United States Holocaust Memorial Museum have joined together to create a portal of resources and event highlights.
Here are some more resources, ideas for lesson plans, and historical context about Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day.
- Learn more about the history, symbolic colors, and theme of Women’s History Month from this BBC article.
- From August 2020, ATPE lobbyist Andrea Chevalier looks back on teachers, women’s suffrage, and remembering the 19th Amendment a century later.
- This year’s theme for International Women’s Day is “Women in leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.” Learn more here from UN Women.
- PBS has curated a list of documentaries and stories to watch during this year’s Women’s History Month.
- Scholastic has put together a collection of lesson plans and activities about women’s history.
- From sharemylesson.com, here’s an updated collection of resources touching on culture, civil rights, economics, and more.
- The organization ADL states, “Women’s History Month is an excellent time to talk with students about gender stereotypes and bias, hail important women in history, discover more about women’s issues and their fight for equity, read literature that celebrates women and girls, analyze sexism and explore its causes and solutions.” The organization has also created a list of K-12 curriculum and other educational resources for educators to use in school.
- Browse the National Women’s History Museum’s toolkit for Women’s History Month, which includes links to biographies, events, and programming.
- For our data lovers, Statistics in Schools has activities about voting participation, women in the workforce, and women’s role during the years after the War of 1812 leading up to the Civil War.
We hope you join us in celebrating Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day and recognizing all the great things women in the education profession have done for Texas and the country.