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  • leviToday in Mighty Girl History, we remember the contributions of Nobel Prize-winning neurobiologist Rita Levi-Montalcini who died today at the age of 103. Born into a Jewish-Italian family in Turin in 1909, Levi-Montalcini's years in medical school coincided with the rise of fascism in Italy and the imposition of anti-Semitic laws which limited her career prospects.

    Once WWII broke out, she and her family decided to stay in Italy rather than flee overseas and she built a laboratory in her bedroom to continue her research work. It was in this makeshift laboratory that she began studying the development of chicken embryos; research that laid the underpinning of her later Nobel Prize-winning work on the mechanism of cell growth regulation.

    After the Nazi invasion of Italy in 1943, Levi-Montalcini and her family were forced underground and moved to Florence where she worked as a doctor in Allied war camps after the city was liberated. Following the war, in 1946, she moved to the U.S. for more than twenty years to conduct research at Washington University in St. Louis. It was there that she discovered nerve growth factor, a protein which regulates the growth of cells; this discovery was critical to better understanding tumor growth among other conditions. Continue reading Continue reading

  • 2012-booksBy Jennifer de Beer, A Mighty Girl Research Intern

    The season of reflection is upon us, and here at A Mighty Girl we’ve been taking a look back at the year’s new releases. As it is also the season of gifting, many of you are likely interested in finding some fresh, new material to inspire and delight the Mighty Girls in your life. Whether you like to stay on top of new releases or are seeking the perfect present for a young book lover, you are in luck!

    Our latest special collection, 2012 Mighty Girl Books: A Year in Review features more than more than 100 empowering books for girls, the majority of which are brand new additions to our site.

    Over the course of this past year, a wide variety of books have hit the market that feature stellar Mighty Girl characters. The new titles run the gamut, from picture books to young adult novels, historical fiction to fantasy, and the return of old favorites alongside newcomers. Continue reading Continue reading

  • By Lili Sandler, A Mighty Girl Research Intern

    We are pleased to introduce A Mighty Girl's “Small but Mighty” Toy Collection! We know that there are times when you want to get the Mighty Girl in your life just a wee special present, and we’ve selected 250 different toys that fit that bill. Whether you’re looking to stuff a stocking, reward her hard work, or just put a smile on her face, there’s sure to be something in this collection that will do the trick.

    We've included toys to appeal to Mighty Girls of every age from infants to teens. You can choose from an array of girl-empowering sticker books, action figures, cards games, science toys, finger puppets, sports equipment, Lego minifigures, musical instruments and much more -- and the vast majority of the toys in this collection are small enough to fit into a Christmas stocking. We've also sought out toys that were very affordable. Everything in the collection is under $20 and nearly two-thirds of the toys are under $10. Continue reading Continue reading

  • On this day in Mighty Girl history, computer-programming pioneer Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper was born in 1906. Hopper was a highly-regarded professional in both academia and industry and her doctorate in mathematics, received in 1934, was a rare achievement for women at that time. However, it was only the start to a long career of challenging traditional expectations.

    In addition to being a professor, Adm. Hopper was actively involved with the Navy for over 40 years and it was during her tenure with the Navy that she became immersed in the world of computers. Ms. Hopper’s contributions to the world of technology ranged from advances in data processing to inventing computer languages.

    Her desire to make computers more accessible led her to create the compiler in 1952, which allowed English instructions, as opposed to numerical code, to be interpreted by a computer. She also co-invented the Common Business Oriented Language (COBOL), the first universal computer language to be used in business and government.

    Considered by some “the first lady of software,” Grace Hopper was a visionary who consistently demonstrated her interest in pushing boundaries and exploring new territories. As she famously stated, “A ship in port is safe; but that is not what ships are built for. Sail out to sea and do new things.” Continue reading Continue reading

  • We are excited to present A Mighty Girl’s 2012 Holiday Gift Guide with fifty toy recommendations for children of all ages. It's our hope that this guide will make your holiday gift buying a little easier this year and help you learn more about our recently released toy collection.

    In this gift guide, you’ll find a list of the top ten favorite girl-empowering toys of each member of A Mighty Girl’s toy team, the group responsible for researching and carefully selecting the 2,000 toys featured in our toy section.

    Our toy collection was the culmination of a three month long research project by one of A Mighty Girl’s co-founders and a team of our fantastic interns. Given the time and energy the toy team devoted to this project, we have become intimately familiar with the wide range of girl empowering toys and each of us has our personal favorites. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Keeping girls and boys in their pink and blue boxes in toy catalogs is standard practice in the U.S. but, with all of the exciting changes coming out of Europe this year with London’s biggest toy store, Hamleys, and the holiday catalog of Sweden's biggest toy chain, Top Toy, going gender neutral, now is the time for U.S. toy companies to stop dictating the interests of kids here too.

    To that end, A Mighty Girl has just launched a petition on Change.org calling on the country's biggest toy chain, Toys "R" Us, to stop stereotyping girls and boys in their toy advertisements. Every child should feel free to explore their interests freely without feeling held back by outdated stereotypes. If you'd like to support our petition to Toys "R" Us, please visit the link below to learn more and add your name. And, please help spread the word by sharing the petition with others. Continue reading Continue reading

  • We're very excited to share news of a fantastic new feature on A Mighty Girl -- our Wishlist is now shareable! We’ve been receiving many requests for this capability and we hope this shareable wishlist will transform your holiday shopping by making it simple for you to share your Mighty... Continue reading
  • By Katherine Handcock, A Mighty Girl Research Intern

    A Mighty Girl is proud to introduce our collection of books celebrating the winter holidays! We hope you enjoy our selection of high quality stories that emphasize values common to Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa such compassion, love, and generosity and, as always, feature a host of Mighty Girls and Women. These lovely books are as likely to become favorites of adults as they are to please the children reading them.

    Some of these stories explore holidays traditions recounted in folktales from around the world. Books like Habari Gani? What’s the News and Babushka teach children more about the origins of the holidays they celebrate. The Miracle of the First Poinsettia: A Mexican Christmas Story and Cobweb Christmas: The Tradition of Tinsel show how varied the origins of common traditions can be, while Latkes, Latkes, Good to Eat and Marta and the Manger Straw show how the values of generosity, kindness, and compassion are universal. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Today is International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and it's an excellent time to discuss healthy relationships with the Mighty Girls in your life. Abuse occurs in 1 in 10 adolescent relationships and appears to be on the rise as cell phones and social media are increasingly used for harassment.

    The National Teen Dating Abuse Helpline reports that the majority of their calls come from girls seeking help in responding to relentless texting or efforts by boys to control their behavior. As Dr. Elizabeth Miller, an expert on teen relationship abuse, explains, the situation among teens is complicated by the fact that “few adolescents understand what a healthy relationship looks like.” Teens often interpret warning signs of unhealthy relationships such as excessive attention as expressions of love.

    In this post, we've provided a series of resources and recommended reading where you can learn more about the issue of teen relationship abuse as well as information on where teens can turn to find help for themselves or their friends. Continue reading Continue reading

  • Today we're excited to present one of our favorite new site additions ever -- A Mighty Girl's Character Collection! Whether your favorite Mighty Girl character is Madeline, Merida, or a historical figure like Marie Curie, you can now easily find everything on A Mighty Girl about your favorite character all in one place!

    As we've expanded A Mighty Girl over the past few months from our initial collection of girl-empowering books and movies to include music, TV shows, and, just this past week, toys, we’ve realized that the site content related to your favorite characters is now found in multiple sections across the site. With our new Character Collection, you can find everything related to your favorite character with just one click.

    If you mouse over the new "Character Collection" link on the top menu bar, it will open a directory featuring our four types of characters: fictional ones from books and TV shows/movies; historical girls and women; and a special collection dedicated just to superheroes. Continue reading Continue reading

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