Biographies are so interesting to elementary school learners and their view of the world begins to widen beyond themselves, their home, and their family. It is so much fun to watch their eyes widen as they begin to see the possibility that exists in the world.It’s pretty inspirational!

Using picture books as a way to introduce biographical stories of great adventures and achievements is also a great way to introduce young students in an appropriate way to some of the political and cultural issues that are a part of our history ( and sometimes present).

Recently , I received a few copies of books from Innovation Press for review. The thing that I loved about these titles is that they all have determined, strong, and inspirational women at the forefront of the books. They’re all also so engaging with text (sometimes rhyming) and illustrations.

Here are 4 of my favorites by this publisher:

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  1. The Girl with a Mind for Math: The Story of Raye Montague

I actually received this book during an earlier review, but it fit so well with these new picture books that I had to include it! This book is a story of Raye Montague, a successful engineer.

I created this free printable resource to use alongside the book in order to encourage comprehension and engagement with the story.


2. The House That Cleaned Itself: The True Story of Frances Gabe’s (Mostly) Marvelous Invention

This story definitely had me intrigued. I could definitely use some of the inventions discussed in this story in my house! This story is not only a great story about an adventurous woman inventor,  but is a great story for getting young learners dreaming of the great big things they may be able to accomplish or invent themselves!

3.The Astronaut With a Song for the Stars: The Story of Dr. Ellen Ochoa (Amazing Scientists)

This story of a female astronaut who persevered even through big challenges is a wonderful empowering story AND it’s in rhyming format! The book discusses how women were often not seen as the type of people that usually were engineers or astronauts, but Ellen Ochoa found a way!

4. Evelyn the Adventurous Entomologist: The True Story of a World-Traveling Bug Hunter

Everyone loves hunting bugs! This biographical story of a woman who marched to the beat of her own drum is a great story on its own about hard work and persevering. It also connects really well to any informational study of bugs that may be a part of your informational writing unit!

Here’s the Insect and Bug research companion I’ve created and used in my classroom to study bugs!


There are also some others by the same authors and publishing company Innovation Press that I haven’t viewed, but based on what I’ve seen, would be a great addition to any home or classroom library as well!


Stay tuned because I’m going to be working on more companion materials to be used with these wonderful books in the very near future!