"Science is not a boy's game, it's not a girl's game. It's everyone's game. It's about where we are and where we're going." - Nichelle Nichols

Given the popularity of the recently released Women of Space NASA Lego set (sold out on Lego.com and almost every store, dammit.) it's clear that something is changing. Whether it's the kids or the adults that are snatching these sets up, the message is: STEM careers are not now - nor were they ever - just for boys. 

Society seems thirsty for information on the trailblazing women in science, tech, engineering, and math. These are the empowering figures we should have learned about in school, but somehow ... didn't. Their contributions were somehow missed by most history books. 

This is where the importance of exposure and normalcy come into play. Our kids should hear about and recognize both men and women as capable in any career. That's why these books are going help even the playing field; to make up the ground women have lost due to their glaring omission from STEM history. 

Obviously, there are many books that teach about these individual subjects themselves. But before that - tell the encouraging stories of women who are great role models for all children. Nurture the interest so that later it is allowed to become a passion. These 10 empowering books do just that - and the lasting effects that message will have on your kids is priceless.

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Women in Science: 50 Fearless Pioneers Who Changed the World

A charmingly illustrated and educational book, New York Times bestseller Women in Science highlights the contributions of fifty notable women to the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) from the ancient to the modern world.

Grace Hopper: Queen of Computer Code

Who was Grace Hopper? A software tester, workplace jester, cherished mentor, ace inventor, avid reader, naval leader—AND rule breaker, chance taker, and troublemaker. Acclaimed picture book author Laurie Wallmark (Ada Byron Lovelace and the Thinking Machine) once again tells the riveting story of a trailblazing woman.

Ada Twist, Scientist

Like her classmates, builder Iggy and inventor Rosie, scientist Ada, a character of color, has a boundless imagination and has always been hopelessly curious. Why are there pointy things stuck to a rose? Why are there hairs growing inside your nose? When her house fills with a horrific, toe-curling smell, Ada knows it’s up to her to find the source. 

Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women

In kitchens and living rooms, in garages and labs and basements, even in converted chicken coops, women and girls have invented ingenious innovations that have made our lives simpler and better. Their creations are some of the most enduring (the windshield wiper) and best loved (the chocolate chip cookie). What inspired these women, and just how did they turn their ideas into realities?

Rise of the Rocket Girls: The Women Who Propelled Us, from Missiles to the Moon to Mars

In the 1940s and 50s, when the newly minted Jet Propulsion Laboratory needed quick-thinking mathematicians to calculate velocities and plot trajectories, they didn't turn to male graduates. Rather, they recruited an elite group of young women who, with only pencil, paper, and mathematical prowess, transformed rocket design, helped bring about the first American satellites, and made the exploration of the solar system possible.

Margaret and the Moon

Margaret Hamilton loved numbers as a young girl. She knew how many miles it was to the moon (and how many back). She loved studying algebra and geometry and calculus and using math to solve problems in the outside world.

The Girl Who Thought in Pictures: The Story of Dr. Temple Grandin 

When young Temple was diagnosed with autism, no one expected her to talk, let alone become one of the most powerful voices in modern science. Yet, the determined visual thinker did just that. Her unique mind allowed her to connect with animals in a special way, helping her invent groundbreaking improvements for farms around the globe!

Katherine Johnson (You Should Meet)

Meet Katherine Johnson, a brilliant mathematician who worked at NASA in the early 1950s until retiring in 1986. Katherine’s unparalleled calculations (done by hand) helped plan the trajectories for NASA’s Mercury and Apollo missions (including the Apollo 11 moon landing). She is said to be one of the greatest American minds of all time.

Girls Who Code: Learn to Code and Change the World

Bursting with dynamic artwork, down-to-earth explanations of coding principles, and real-life stories of girls and women working at places like Pixar and NASA, this graphically animated book shows what a huge role computer science plays in our lives and how much fun it can be.

I Love Science: A Journal for Self-Discovery and Big Ideas

Full of writing, drawing, and creativity prompts, I Love Science inspires kids (and adults) of all ages to fill the pages with ideas, self-exploration, and big dreams for the future. Opening with a short reference section that contains basic equations, the periodic table, basic HTML codes, and a measurement converter, the journal then invites the user to write and dream.