Her’s Day Thursday

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Just within the past few months, the Huffman Household has been taken over by everything American Girl. Huff the Tot first learned of these dolls through her cousin who had a few and started begging for one last summer. I was a little hesitant to purchase one (I mean, these dolls are crazy-expensive) but luckily, my sisters and mom went in together to snag one for HtT for Christmas. Since then, the girl has been OBSESSED. As I looked into the American Girl universe, I discovered there’s a lot more to it than just playing with dolls. Each doll has some historical significance (or a character attribute represented) and comes with a book telling that girl’s story. And, on New Year’s Day this year, AG revealed their “Girl of the Year” for 2018!

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Her name is Luciana Vega. She is a Chilean-American who has BIG aspirations to be the first person to walk on Mars! Luciana loves anything and everything to do with space and space exploration–she even goes to space camp! It makes my heart so happy to see such a diverse, STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math)-loving gal in the AG lineup!

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American Girl has been working with several leading ladies over at NASA to make sure they got Luciana’s story right and showed girls out there that there are many women in this field. Former NASA chief scientist, Ellen Stofan, hopes that Luciana is a role model for girls to chase after STEM-related dreams and careers, saying: “I think a lot of girls are sometimes intimidated by STEM careers because they think they have to be perfect in math or the top of their class. But what you really need to have is determination, the spirit to pick yourself up when you make a mistake and keep going. I really think it’s that determination, that will, the ability to come back from failure, that are the most important characteristics. I hope that girls who read these books are inspired by these tales of failure but persistence.”

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Dream big, girls, and reach for the stars!

Her’s Day Thursday

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This week, I’ve found some awesome books and toys that will help your little lady become a strong woman!

 

For Your Teen (and you)! 

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This book covers an array of issues that teenage girls deal with today: body image, friends and bullies, divorce, and anxiety. According to the synopsis on Amazon, the author’s goal is to show young girls that they are stronger than they think and CAN overcome obstacles in their lives: Parents, schoolwork, boyfriends, college . . .it’s enough to make any teenage girl wish she could just snap her fingers and make it all go away. But with the click of her heels, she’ll soon discover that the means to dealing with stress were always within her power. Dealing with the Stuff That Makes Life Tough helps teenage girls find the wisdom within to overcome stress in their lives.

 

 

For Your Nature-Lover

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This activity pack comes with an activity journal full of outdoor and science activities! There’s even space for your little botanist to adopt a tree and track its progress for an entire year!

 

For Your Super Hero 

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It did my heart good to see so many little girls dressed up as super heroes this Halloween! I can’t even tell you how many little Wonder Women  I saw out trick-or-treating because I lost count! Give your little hero a pal to snuggle with and someone to tag along on her amazing adventures! Get it here!

 

For Your Activist in Training

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This board book is full of amazing women throughout history and modern time that have influenced change for the better! This Little Trailblazer features Rosa Parks, Maria Tallchief, Malala Yousafzai, and Florence Nightingale (among others)! A definite must-read for your little revolutionary!

 

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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I’m always looking for books that I can read to Huff the Tot that show powerful/influential women in history, especially in the sciences and math. I was never into science or math growing up but I want HtT to know that she can do whatever she puts her mind to–including physics, calculus, and biology! I’ve found a few new books I’d like to add to our personal library!

Of Numbers and Stars: The Story of Hypatia

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This book is about a brilliant lady named Hypatia. She grew up in the city of Alexandria around 4 A.D. She was one of very few women of her time that was tutored in math and science, and even taught Socrates!

The Watcher: Jane Goodall’s Life with the Chimps

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This beautifully illustrated picture book tells the story of Jane Goodall. The book begins with her childhood and shows how Jane became enthralled with primates, dedicating her life to the study of chimps.

Ada Byron Lovelace and the Thinking Machine

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I honestly do not know much about Ada Lovelace, so this book may make an appearance on Huff the Tot’s shelf! This book explains how Ada wrote the very first computer program in the 1840’s!

 

Look Up! Henrietta Leavitt, Pioneering Woman Astronomer

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Henrietta Leavitt was an astronomer that discovered the relation between the luminosity and the period of Cepheid variable stars. Because of her findings, astronomers are able to measure the distance between Earth and faraway galaxies!

 

Girls Who Looked Under Rocks: The Lives of Six Pioneering Naturalists

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This book features six amazing women who worked hard to preserve and understand the world around them. Girls Who Looked Under Rocks highlights women such as Rachel Carson and Maria Merian, intelligent, ground-breaking women who were able to break through a “men’s only” field and prove their intellectual prowess while making a positive impact on the environment.

 

Have you read any of these books? Do you have suggestions to add to this list? Share in the comments below!

 

 

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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Since yesterday was International Women’s Day, I thought it would be appropriate to highlight some of the awesome ways women have influenced the world! Here are some amazing women who invented some extraordinary things!

Stephanie Kwolek

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Kwolek, a chemist, discovered and invented the materials used to make Kevlar bulletproof vests!

 

Florence Parpart

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We ALL owe Florence Parpart a HUGE thank you! She’s the inventor of the refrigerator (aka, The Real Happiest Place on Earth)!

 

Josephine Cochrane

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Josephine Cochrane is an A+ in book. Why? She is the inventor of the dishwasher! Saving us all (and by all I mean ALL–not just ladies) from the horror that is washing dishes by hand!

 

Marie Van Brittan Brown

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Marie was a nurse who worked odd hours and frequently found herself at home alone during the night. She collaborated with her husband and invented the home security system!

 

Tabitha Babbitt

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Tabitha Babbitt lived in a Shaker community in Massachusetts which relied heavily on the forestry business. She observed that the men exerted a lot of energy but using the two-men pull saws. Because of this, she invented the circular saw!

 

Have you ever heard of any of these inventors? Know of any others? Share in the comments below!

 

Her’s Day Thursday

 

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During the Oscars this past Sunday, GE debuted an awesome new commercial. Didn’t see it? No worries! I’ve got it right here:

 

I. LOVE. THIS.

(Also, the irony that this commercial was played during an awards show honoring celebrities was not lost on me)

I wish great women like Millie Dresselhaus were held to the same esteem as celebrities. And Millie deserves it! She was the first female professor at MIT (she taught physics and electrical engineering) and has won several awards including the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the National Medal of Science (among more than a dozen others)!

You can learn more about Millie here!

Her’s Day Thursday

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If you’ve read my blog at all, you know that I love to write about strong women. Especially strong women that have paved the way for future generations in lines of work that are predominantly male. So when I saw this trailer, I literally got goosebumps!

 

 

The film, Hidden Figures, tells the story of Katherine Johnson, Dorothy Vaughn, and Mary Jackson (a physicist, space scientist, and mathematician, respectively); three incredible women who used their brain power to help the Project Mercury mission (aka, the mission in which John Glenn orbited the Earth)  a success. Not only did these women break massive ground for women in STEM fields, but also for women of color.

(The film is actually an adaption of a book of the same name by Margot Lee Shetterly. Read more about it here!)

 

 

 

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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When I opened my internet this morning, I got a glimpse of today’s Google Doodle:

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Intrigued, I clicked on the picture and learned that today is Hertha Marks Ayrton’s 162nd birthday. Who is Hertha Marks Aytron? I’ll tell you!

 

Phoebe Sarah Hertha Ayrton was born on April 28, 1854 in Hampshire, England. The third of eight children, Hertha (as she was later called) helped her mother care for her siblings when her father unexpectedly died in 1861. Hertha’s aunts invited her to attend a school they ran in London, knowing that Hertha would need an education to gain employment, thus helping to support the family. Hertha joined her aunts’ school and quickly found she had an affinity for math and science.

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After completing her education, Hertha worked for a short time as a governess and then pursued a college degree at Girton College, Cambridge University. She passed all the necessary exams to earn a Bachelor’s of Science, however was awarded a “certificate” instead, as Cambridge did not give degrees to women at the time. Hertha went to the University of London, took the same exams, and earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree.

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Hertha continued her work in mathematics, even getting published in Educational Times. In 1884, she patented a line-divider a drawing device for engineers that divides lines into any number of equal parts. This invention was not only used by engineers, but also artists and architects. This would not be her only invention. Until her death in 1923, Hertha registered twenty-six different patents!

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Hertha was a pioneer in the field of engineering. She was awarded the Hughes Medal for her works in engineering–and, as of last year, is only one of two women to ever win the award! In 2015, she was named by the Royal Society as one of the ten most influential British women in science.

 

Go, Hertha!