A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this book.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Why Can't Women Be Doctors?: The Story of Elizabeth Blackwell is a lively telling of how a girl "who never walked away from a challenge" grew up to be the first female doctor in the United States, against all odds and despite many people and institutions believing girls weren't smart enough to become doctors. Tanya Lee Stone's biographical picture book is brimming with Marjorie Priceman's fun, exuberant illustrations -- and even a cute dog -- that speed the tale along and make this slice of history engaging and entertaining. An inspirational choice for Women's History Month or anytime. And a great way to encourage girls to pursue science.
What's the story?
In the 1830s, when Elizabeth Blackwell was growing up, there were no women doctors. But when she was 24, a friend who was very ill told her she would have preferred to be examined by a woman and urged Elizabeth to become one. She believed Elizabeth could change the world. After much thought, this no-nonsense young woman, \"who never walked away from a challenge,\" applied to medical school and got 28 rejections -- but one acceptance. In 1849 she became the first doctor in the United States, graduating with the highest grades in her class.
Is it any good?
This is an entertaining biographical snapshot that shows that discriminatory barriers are made to be broken. This lively, entertaining, inspirational picture book sweeps the reader up and swiftly moves along, showing a tough little girl who grows up to be a lovely young lady who will not be cowed by anyone and proves she's as smart, capable, and dedicated as any man. Marjorie Priceman's colorful illustrations have humor and momentum, contrasting the many No, No, No's on one spread with the thrilling YES on the following one, where Elizabeth packs her bags for Geneva Medical School in upstate New York. Even kindergartners will easily understand her great, historic achievement as they enjoy the cartoon-like images of girls and young women in 19th century long dresses and bonnets. A perfect choice for Women's History Month or for encouraging girls to study science.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about why people once thought women couldn't be doctors. Are there things today that people think girls can't do?
What is it about the art in Why Can't Women Be Doctors? that makes the story seem exciting?
What other women in history can you think of who have done things that have made life better for all the girls and women who followed them?
- Author: Tanya Lee Stone
- Illustrator: Marjorie Priceman
- Genre: Picture Book
- Topics: Great girl role models, History, Misfits and underdogs, Science and nature
- Book type: Non-Fiction
- Publisher: Henry Holt & Company, Inc.
- Publication date: February 19, 2013
- Publisher's recommended age(s): 5 - 9
- Number of pages: 40
- Available on: Nook, Hardback, Kindle
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.