Famous women in history: 4 Ways to teach Women’s History Month

Famous women in history: 4 Ways to teach Women’s History Month

February 27, 2023Quinae Jackson and Marcela Labrador

What is women’s history month, and why is it important?

Women’s History Month in March is dedicated to acknowledging and celebrating the vital contributions of women in United States history and society. Some of the most important moments in history can be attributed to famous women in history in ways we don’t often consider. From the first successful space flight to the first flight over both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans- women make history, and in March, we honor women in history. It is important to teach about women’s history in the classroom year-round to ensure everyone has a full understanding of the ways in which our world is better when we all have an opportunity to allow our gifts to shine.

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How to use Nearpod to teach Women’s History Month

Collaborative Nearpod activities help teachers encourage civic and civil conversations and cover a range of topics that openly discuss women in STEM, social studies, the arts, and literature. When discussing the U.S. Government, be sure to include Susan B. Anthony and Sojourner Truth and their fight for the right to vote. When DNA comes up in Science class, reference Rosalind Franklin, who was the first person to capture an X-ray of DNA successfully. Liven up math discussions by emphasizing Marjorie Lee Browne’s mission to inspire girls to pursue careers in STEM by boosting their confidence in their ability to do mathematics.

Lessons about women's rights and history and historical figures

However you teach, there is a Nearpod lesson to support your exploration of women in History. This blog post will walk through how to use free resources from Nearpod to teach students about women’s history in any classroom setting, for any subject, at any time of the school year. Let us help you incorporate famous women in history into your curriculum year-round with these resources!

Famous women in history: 4 Ways to teach Women’s History Month

1. Be inclusive of different perspectives in women’s history

When you approach a historical occurrence in your classroom, support students in recognizing that history is often written by “he,” who holds the pen. There is always more than one side to any story. In fact, “she” was there as well! Women have always been pivotal in our society, it’s important we understand the role they played, examine the struggles they endured and celebrate the accomplishments they made. Tie in historical narratives and artifacts that exhibit the women who were present as well.

Women’s History Month free lessons that incorporate multiple perspectives:

Malala Yousafzai and Student Activism lesson about powerful women in history

Inspirational and interactive lessons highlighting the contributions of women from the past and present, like the Malala Yousafzai and Student Activism lesson.

Famous women in history lesson about Ida B. Wells

Teach about famous women in American history using Interactive Video lessons, such as Ida B. Wells.

Gender Equality lesson

Interactive social studies lessons to provide context on women’s rights in American and world history, such as Participate: Gender Equality.

Jane Eyre women's history literature lesson

Teach about notable women authors in literature using Interactive Video lessons, such as Crash Course: Jane Eyre.

2. Create a classroom culture of encouragement by highlighting women in STEM

It is important that you create a classroom culture that encourages girls to explore various types of careers, including those that are not traditionally associated with women. Women’s History Month is not just about commemorating the past but also about creating a future where girls can be whatever they want to be and have examples to help them along the way. Famous women in history have been trailblazing for ages- from Lozen, a gifted warrior who was a shield to the Apache people, to Dr. Chien-Shiung Wu, who is known as the “First Lady of Physics.”

Lessons that boost confidence and expose students to the endless possibilities that exist:

Representation in STEM careers lesson

Examine why women and some races are underrepresented in STEM fields and explore how to be inclusive in career fields with this Learning for Justice lesson.

Famous women in history interactive video lesson about Marie Curie

Explore notable women in STEM, such as the Interactive Video lesson about Marie Curie.

Famous women in STEM lesson about Katherine Johnson in partnership with Flocabulary

Biographies on the lives and contributions of under-recognized women in American history, such as the engaging lesson about Katherine Johnson in partnership with Flocabulary.

Current event lessons for Women's History Month

Teach about current events, such as the First All-Woman Spacewalk and 3D Sculptures at the Smithsonian lessons.

3. Inspire students with engaging hip-hop video lessons about famous women in history

As emerging global citizens, it is important to create opportunities for students to grow empathy and understanding with content that reflects their identities and cultures and introduces them to new perspectives. Flocabulary offers relevant, engaging, standards-aligned hip-hop videos and instructional activities that connect academic content to the five pillars of literacy. One of my favorite ways to incorporate Flocabulary is to include a Flocab video as an interactive activity in my Nearpod lesson. Students can also use the Lyric Lab feature to demonstrate mastery in creative ways. Hip-hop is the voice of the youth. Use Flocabulary to help students combine something they love with an opportunity to learn and grow. Flocabulary includes a ton of videos that highlight the contributions of women in history.

Check out these Flocabulary videos on amazing women in history and marginalized groups:

4. Prioritize teaching social and emotional skills and representation of gender

Collaborate Board example for social emotional learning activities

Use Nearpod’s interactive activities to help students practice social and emotional learning skills. Have them share how they feel about the women in history they are learning about.

Here are some ideas you can use:

Poll question to get insight into how students are feeling
  • Use a Poll activity to ask multiple-choice questions without a right answer to check for understanding. Take a class vote or highlight student opinions.
  • Use an Interactive Video and allow the predetermined checks for understanding to be used as discussion prompts for classroom conversations.
  • Do a Time to Climb activity, an educational game, with students that will level up the competition and engagement in the classroom while assessing their understanding.
  • Use a Collaborate Board, a discussion board for collaborative learning, to empower student voice and choice in the classroom.

Start teaching with these Women’s History Month activities

We’re so excited to see you use these lessons and activities to engage your students in women’s history. Remember, Nearpod is an opportunity to leverage engagement and interaction and prioritize students’ social and emotional learning needs when discussing women in history. Happy Women’s History Month!

New to Nearpod? Sign up for free to access standards-aligned activities and create interactive lessons!

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