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Category: A Mighty Girl Spotlight
  • Unhealthy perfectionism has become a growing contributor to teens' rising anxiety.

    Many tweens and teens struggle with anxiety and perfectionism, and parents often bemoan that "she puts so much pressure on herself." Rachel Simmons, an expert on girls' development and the author of Enough As She Is, however, says that perception puts even more pressure on kids. "The very phrasing of the statement — 'on herself' — lays blame for distress at the feet of our teens, rather than a culture that is stoking the flames of their anxiety," she writes. "It puts the onus for change on kids — just chill, we seem to be saying, and you’ll be okay!" With a recent study finding a 33 percent spike in the number of teens who feel they have to be perfect to win approval, including from their friends and parents, it's more important than ever to acknowledge what teens are going through and help them develop strategies to deal with perfectionism. Continue reading Continue reading

  • A Mighty Girl's top picks of spooky and suspenseful books for tweens & teens.

    As Halloween approaches, it's fun to read spooky stories that send shivers up and down your spine! While in the past, many thrilling tales of suspense and mystery played up the stereotype of the screaming girl who needs rescuing, there are many great books available today starring Mighty Girls who use their courage, their wits, and their strength to untangle the mystery and face down whatever is lurking in the shadows.

    In this blog post, we've showcased our favorite girl-empowering spooky stories perfect for tweens and teens — ones that no doubt many adult readers will enjoy as well. These titles are sure to have her eagerly flipping pages to how the brave heroine evades danger and saves the day! You just might want to read them with the lights on...

    For more books of witches, monsters, and other spooky things for readers of all ages, check out our special feature on the Top Halloween Mighty Girl Books and Films. And if you're looking for the perfectly spooky costume, visit our Girl Empowerment Halloween Costume Guide. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Our top picks of Mighty Girl superhero costumes from our Halloween costume collection and photos of Mighty Girls in costume shared by our community!

    Who doesn't love pretending to be a superhero? Flying through the sky, using your skills, wits, and super powers to save the world is an exciting idea, especially for young children. So it's no wonder that superhero costumes are tremendously popular at Halloween! If a Mighty Girl wants to dress up as a favorite superhero, there's no shortage of Iron Man, Captain America, and Superman costumes but what if she wants to dress up as a female superhero? Costumes for even popular female superheroes such as Wonder Woman, Batgirl, and Supergirl are often nowhere to be seen. And if the costumes are available, often they are either highly sexualized, with short skirts and cutouts — hardly the right outfit for someone busy saving the day!

    To make it easier to find empowering superhero costumes for fans of every age, from newborns to adults, we've showcased our favorites based on characters ranging from Black Widow to Bumblebee. In addition to being fun to wear, these costumes remind everyone that the world of superheroes has plenty of strong, intelligent, and courageous female characters to inspire costumes and dress-up wear. Dressed as her favorite superhero, your Mighty Girl will feel ready to take on the world!

    For even more costume inspiration on themes ranging from superheroes to animals, you'll find hundreds of costumes for all ages from infants through adults in our Girl Empowerment Halloween Costume Guide. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Dr. Sherri Mason's groundbreaking research discovered the widespread prevalence of microplastics in the environment.

    Dr. Sherri Mason, whose research alerted the world to the widespread prevalence of microplastics, has been awarded a 2018 Heinz Award for Public Policy for her groundbreaking work to address this growing health and environment problem. Mason was the first scientist to research and identify microplastics pollution in the Great Lakes, the largest freshwater system in the world. Her research brought international attention to the threats posed by microplastics, leading to state and federal bans on microbeads, tiny bits of plastic used in exfoliating scrubs and washes that Mason discovered were accumulating in the environment and the food chain. "Sherri’s research has made the issue of plastic pollution real and present for everyone," said Teresa Heinz, Chairman of the Heinz Family Foundation. "Her ongoing work can be an important key to ending the steady accumulation of plastics in our environment." Continue reading Continue reading

  • The best books for kids, teens, and adults about women who dared to fly!

    From the earliest days of aviation, women have played a role — but few people know the stories of the daring women who opened the throttles, pulled back on the stick, and soared into history! Even when a name like Amelia Earhart or Bessie Coleman comes to mind, many kids don't know exactly how they made history, and few of them have heard of other groundbreaking women like Sophie Blanchard or Jerrie Mock. So it's time to celebrate these women who founds ways to take flight, even when the world told them they were reaching too high.

    In this blog post, we've featured our favorite books for all ages about trailblazing female pilots throughout history. Whether they were on the cutting edge of the development of flight, breaking records and testing the limits of what newer and better airplanes could do, or thrilling crowds with their daredevil maneuvers, these airwomen were bold and daring. And, for the Mighty Girls that read them, these books might just be the inspiration for their dreams of a life in the clouds! Continue reading Continue reading

  • Pioneering mathematician Ada Lovelace is now the subject of a variety of books for all ages!

    English mathematician Ada Lovelace is widely considered the world's first computer programmer for her invention of the computer algorithm. Born in 1815 to the poet Lord Byron and Anne Isabella Byron, Lovelace's mathematical talents led to an ongoing collaboration with mathematician Charles Babbage, who called Lovelace the "Enchantress of Numbers." While translating an article by an Italian engineer on Babbage's Analytical Engine, a proposed early version of a mechanical general-purpose computer, Ada added her own extensive set of notes, three times as long as the original article, which contained a tremendous breakthrough — the first computer program or algorithm!

    Ada Lovelace's important contributions to the development of computers were nearly lost to history, but fortunately her story is becoming more widely known today. She is now the subject of a variety of books for readers of all ages and, in this blog post, we've showcased these titles along with toys and posters paying tribute to the mathematical genius who envisioned today's computer age. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Nadia Murad has become a global champion for girls and women.

    Nadia Murad, the courageous Yazidi woman who escaped sexual enslavement by ISIS and went on to become a global champion for girls and women affected by violence, has just been awarded the 2018 Nobel Peace Prize! Murad was only 21 when her village was attacked by ISIS fighters in 2014 and she was forced into slavery. She spent months suffering rape, abuse, and violence before successfully escaping. Since that time, she has devoted herself to speaking on behalf of the Yazidi women still in captivity, as well as other girls and women who are victims of violence worldwide. "All those who commit the crimes of human trafficking and genocide must be brought to justice so that women and children can live in peace," asserts the 25-year-old activist. "These crimes against women and their freedom must be brought to an end today." Continue reading Continue reading

  • Dr. Frances Arnold, who pioneered the field of "directed evolution," became the fifth woman in history to win the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.

    Dr. Frances Arnold has just won the 2018 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for pioneering the field of "directed evolution"  —  becoming the first American woman in history and the fifth woman overall to be honored.  The method she developed of engineering enzymes that mimic the process of natural selection has created a revolutionary new way for scientists and engineers to design more environmentally-friendly industrial processes. It's now being used in laboratories around the world to develop enzymes that can replace toxic compounds in everything from medicines to biofuels to laundry detergents. “My entire career I have been concerned about the damage we are doing to the planet and each other,” she says. “Change is easier when there are good, economically viable alternatives to harmful habits.” Continue reading Continue reading

  • These are critical phrases girls can use when their contributions to a discussion are interrupted or discounted.

    There are ten words every girl should learn according to writer Soraya Chemaly — not vocabulary terms, but critical phrases they can use when their contributions to a discussion are interrupted or discounted. Practicing her three phrases — “Stop interrupting me," “I just said that," and "No explanation needed" — will help girls speak them in real life, and teach both boys and girls that it’s not socially acceptable to interrupt or ignore a female voice. Whether in the classroom, in the boardroom, or on the Senate floor, it's time for mighty girls and women to persist and ensure that their voices are heard. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Dr. Donna Strickland is only the third woman in history to be awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics.

    Physicist Donna Strickland has just won the 2018 Nobel Prize in Physics for her groundbreaking work studying light and lasers — becoming the third woman in 117 years to win the prestigious award. The 59-year-old associate professor in the Physics and Astronomy Department at the University of Waterloo was a graduate student working on her doctoral dissertation when she and her supervisor invented chirped pulse amplification, a method that creates ultrashort, high-intensity bursts of laser light without destroying amplifiers. The technique is most famous for its use in the development of Lasik eye surgery, but it also allows manufacturers to drill tiny, precise holes and makes it possible to miniaturize laser systems. Strickland, who describes herself as a "laser jock," says that becoming the third woman ever to win a Nobel Prize in Physics is "surreal," adding, "It’s hard for me to take it in right now. But I’m trying to enjoy it." Continue reading Continue reading

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