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Category: STEAM

Six Books to Celebrate Women

Six Children’s Books To Celebrate International Women’s Day 2019

Friday March 8th marks International Women’s Day 2019. In celebration we’ve compiled together a list of six children’s books that honor and empower strong women.

Grace for President



Written by Kelly DiPucchio, Illustrated by LeUyen Pham

Grade Level: 1, 2, 3

Genre: Fiction, Hybrid

New York Times Bestseller



An introduction to the American electoral system, Grace for President tells the story of fourth grader Grace Campbell. Upon learning that America has never had a female president she decides to become the first, launching her political career by running in her school’s mock election.  

She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World


Written by Chelsea Clinton, Illustrated by Alexandra Boiger

Grade Level: PreK, K, 1, 2, 3

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography

New York Times Bestseller


In She Persisted, Chelsea Clinton outlines 13 American women who have helped shape the country through hard work and persistence. Featured figures include Harriet Tubman, Helen Keller, and Oprah Winfrey. The success of She Persisted as a New York Times Bestseller spurred the creation of a second book: She Persisted Around the World. This companion book details the stories of 13 additional history-changing women from around the globe.


Malala’s Magic Pencil



Written by Malala Yousafzai, Illustrated by Kerascoet

Grade Level: PreK, K, 1, 2, 3

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography/Autobiography



As a child in Pakistan, Malala would often wish for a magic pencil, one that would help her create happiness, clean her city, and sleep an extra hour in the morning. But as Malala grew up, she saw the ways a magic pencil could truly be used to make the world a better place.


Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai details her story for a younger audience in her first picture book, Malala’s Magic Pencil. She hopes to inspire children to think globally, and through hard work and determination, change their world.

Girls Who Code, Learn to Code and Change the World


Written by Reshma Saujani

Grade Level: 5, 6

Genre: Nonfiction, Science/Technology

New York Times Bestseller


Written by the founder of the Girls Who Code organization, Reshma Saujani aims to inspire a new generation of female coders. This novel incorporates eye-catching artwork, understandable explanations of basic coding principles, and the inspiring real life stories of women working for corporations like NASA and Pixar. Girls Who Code aims to show women how coding can help them reach their dreams, whatever they may be.


I Dissent, Ruth Bader Ginsburg Makes Her Mark


Written by Debbie Levy, Illustrated by Elizabeth Baddeley

Grade Level: PreK, K, 1, 2, 3

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography


In I Dissent author Debbie Levy demonstrates the power of saying no and standing up for what you believe in. This biographical picture book details the life of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Ginsburg constantly says no, disagreeing when it matters the most. I Dissent outlines the stories of Ginsburg’s most famous dissents, and demonstrates to young readers “disagreeing doesn’t make you disagreeable”!



Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls


Written by Elena Favilli, Francesca Cavallo

Illustrated by 60 female artists from around the world

Grade Level: K, 1, 2, 3

Genre: Nonfiction, Biography


Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls tells the stories of 100 historical female figures, both past and present, in an accessible fairytale style. Each figure is given a one-page biography accompanied with an original work of art. The book aims to inspire children across a range of fields including science, politics, history, sports, technology, and the arts. Featured women include Elizabeth I, Serena Williams and Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls broke records by becoming the most crowd funded children’s book in history, raising over half a million dollars from over 13 thousand backers on Kickstarter. The book’s success has inspired two volumes, a journal and a 12 episode podcast, all of which can be found on the official book website:   

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​Finding the Summer in STEAM

by Sarah Terry, Museum Educator

Could it finally be summer in New Hampshire? This winter child is a little sad (and hauling up the air conditioners from my basement…), but it’s hard to feel too badly when all the trees and flowers are in bloom!

I’ve been watching our museum garden start to grow out back – we have a ton of different herbs, all kinds of vegetables poking their stems up – and contemplating my unfortunate black thumb. I’ve never really been able get anything to grow except aloe plants (which apparently thrive on neglect), so I’ve been thinking a lot about the science behind growing things, the way plants and animals fit into their environments, and the effects, both positive and negative, that human beings can have on those environments.

It’s with those thoughts in mind that I’ve decided it’s high time to dirty up our fancy new STEAM Lab a bit! For the month of June, all of our lab activities are going to be focused on ecology.

I chose ecology in particular because it focuses on how all the elements of our environment work together. Ecologists look at plants, animals, soil, people – all the pieces of the puzzle. That’s what I’m hoping kids and parents will get a taste of in the lab this month.

And taste may be literal! I’m planning on growing some oyster mushrooms in the lab for kids to inspect, as well as planting some pea plants. We’ll be looking at strawberry DNA, making seed bombs, learning about beavers, making biomes in a bag, and even raising some butterflies!

We’ll be posting our STEAM Lab schedule weekly, so make sure to check our Facebook page and calendar for updates!

And who knows – maybe I’ll even get to upgrade my black thumb to something a little greener! Wish me luck!

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S.T.E.A.M. Innovation Lab Opens


New space and high-tech equipment brings focus to Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics

Dover, NH – (March 16, 2016) For the last few years, science, technology, engineering, art and math or STEAM, has been a hot topic when discussing early childhood education. However, the Children’s Museum of New Hampshire has been focused on all five areas since their inception 33 years ago. Now, with the opening of their STEAM Innovation Lab, through the generous sponsorship of Thermo Fisher Scientific, the Museum will have a dedicated space and high-tech equipment capable of supporting and engaging New Hampshire’s future innovators.

What is it?

When the STEAM Innovation Lab opens in mid-March, educators as well as children and families will be invited to use the lab to explore topics that focus on collaboration, critical thinking and making connections with the world outside the classroom. The space is designed as a prototype classroom of the future, with flexible furniture that can be reconfigured for a variety of tasks.

The room is equipped with a projector, iPads, materials for prototyping and designing as well as real tools and scientific equipment, including a 3-D printer and high-powered FLoid® Cell Imaging System provided by partner Thermo Fisher Scientific. Children can even learn how to code their own games on a “CMNH Game Maker” app designed specially for the Children’s Museum by local software developer James Terry. “We’ve already had kids ages 9 – 12 Beta test this Game Maker app in one of our camps and it was a huge success and resulted in some really fun and innovative games,” shared Jane Bard, President of the Children’s Museum of NH.

Expanding on a Well-Established Educator Resource

The Museum has a long history of engaging children in STEAM concepts: science through daily experiments; technology and engineering through Maker Clubs and the Dover Mini Maker Faire; math through their classes and camps; and art in practically everything. “The idea that STEAM concepts are out of reach for young children is false,” shared Jane Bard. “Here at CMNH we’ve been immersed in teaching these topics for many years and with the new STEAM Innovation Lab we are thrilled that we can grow as a resource to children, families and educators as we move into a more high-tech world.”

The STEAM Lab will certainly provide much needed support to NH educators. “We’ve consistently heard from teachers that they need support and training to assist them in teaching STEAM concepts” said Jane.

Fran Meffen, STEAM Academy Director at Dover Middle School, agrees. “The STEAM Innovation Lab (SIL) at the Children’s Museum of NH is a critical resource in providing immersion for children, teachers and community members into all things STEAM. STEAM project-based learning is central to the shift in education that is needed in schools to best meet the goal of having students college and career ready. The STEAM Innovation Lab will serve as an incubator for teachers, allowing them to bring their students on field trips where students will be active learners and the teachers can learn how to bring this experience back to their classrooms.”

Beyond the Classroom

While the STEAM Innovation Lab was created with an eye toward assisting NH’s educators, it is much more than that. The Museum will open the Lab to all museum guests weekly at scheduled times. “We’re planning a whole range of programs and activities that will utilize the space and equipment,” says Meredith Lamothe, Children’s Museum of NH Lead Educator. Storybook STEAM will focus on children as young as 3 years old, while STEAM Lab design challenges will be perfect for the entire family. The STEAM Saturday series will allow parents and children to collaboratively create things like ArtBots or Shrinky Dinks™ Sculptures. “It’s important to us that we continue to incorporate STEAM learning into our already fun and engaging museum environment,” says Lamothe “so that our visitors and members can see how this kind of learning is not just for a classroom setting!”

The Children’s Museum has a variety of programs in place to ensure that everyone who wants to visit the Museum, can, regardless of their economic situation. For example, families who present an EBT card at the door, can pay only $1 admission per person. This kind of all-inclusive access is crucial to leveling the playing field of educational privilege. “It is critical that we engage all children early in meaningful, participatory discovery in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and the arts and create pathways for that learning to continue throughout their education,” said Lauren Provost, Director of Science & Technology Outreach at Dartmouth College. “The Dartmouth Office of Science & Technology Outreach is excited to support these efforts.”

An Eye on the Future

With professional development and teacher training programs with titles like “Next Generation CrossCutting Concepts: What Are They and How Do I Incorporate Them?,” free individual admission for teachers who present a teacher ID, and the free STEM video series created by the Museum and available online, there are many ways that educators can utilize the Children’s Museum as a resource. “The STEAM Innovation Lab represents our commitment to the students, teachers and families of New Hampshire in inspiring all children to become the next generation of innovators and problem solvers,” says Jane Bard.

With the opening of the STEAM Lab, the Museum has an eye on the future, and that is something that has made business as well as education leaders sit up and take notice. “This will help spark our youth’s interest in STEAM while offering educators opportunities to hone their teaching skills and enhance self-directed and engaged STEAM learning in the classroom,” shared Tom Raffio, Chair of the NH State Board of Education and Chair of the New Hampshire Coalition for Business and Education. “If children are consistently exposed to active STEAM teachings early in life and they enjoy participating in these classroom lessons, it will improve their capacity and hunger for learning. If children are enthusiastic about the STEAM disciplines, it will help to develop a pipeline of inspired and engaged innovators, and benefit the next generation of New Hampshire’s workforce.”

Fran Meffen agrees. “While this is just one classroom in the Museum its impact will spread organically across NH.”

STEAM Innovation Lab founding sponsors are Thermo Fisher Scientific, The Roger R. and Theresa A. Thompson Endowment Fund, Granite State Development Corporation and the Horne Family Foundation. To learn more about the STEAM Innovation Lab click here.

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Make Your Own Watercolor Paint

 Over the years, you’ve likely accumulated some less than stellar magic markers. Caps are missing, colors have run dry, and you don’t even know where that random Zayres brand green marker came from!

So what to do? Instead of just chucking all those old markers, why not teach your family about sustainability and recycling by converting those old markers to brand new vibrant watercolor paint!

CMNH Educator Meredith teaches us how in this short how-to video!

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