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Empowered Play: Teaching Women's History With Toys and Games

From building sets to dolls, toys offer a fun new way to introduce kids to trailblazing women throughout history!

With all of the excitement, drama, and derring-do of women throughout history, why keep it to books? Women's history is full of impressive figures who smashed boundaries, stood up against injustice, and defiantly insisted on being true to themselves. When we pull their stories off the page, they become even more thrilling — and one way to do that is to bring women's history into the toy box! Dolls, games, building sets, and more provide a new way to spark an interest in women's history and a fun way to make these stories into part of day-to-day play. With options from toddlers to teens, the toys featured in this post will help kids discover remarkable women they may not have learned about in school, and introduce them to a variety of new role models to admire!

To deepen kids' understanding of the impact of the women featured in this blog post, and many others, visit our extensive History & Biography book collection.

Toys To Teach Women's HIstory

Little Feminist Memory Match Game

Little Feminist Memory Match Game

Manufacturer: Mudpuppy
Recommended Age: 3 - 8

Match up the faces of inspiring women with this memory game from Mudpuppy! 12 inspiring women are featured in this game: Amelia Earhart, Rosa Parks, Frida Kahlo, Indira Gandhi, Cleopatra, Queen Elizabeth I, Hillary Clinton, Gloria Steinem, Malala Yousafzai, Maya Angelou, Sally Ride, and Marie Curie. Flip over the cards, match their faces, and win! The whole game comes tucked in a colorful 2.75" cube box, perfect for storage and quick games on the go.

Amazon.com.au

Rosie the Riveter Plush Doll

Rosie the Riveter Plush Doll

Recommended Age: 3 and up

She can do it — especially when she has this plush Rosie the Riveter at her side! This 11" doll from the Unemployed Philosophers Guild reproduces the classic look of this WWII role model and modern feminist icon in high quality plush fabric. She comes with a detachable tag that features the classic Rosie the Riveter portrait and includes interesting facts about the history and ongoing impact of this inspiring character — the perfect choice to encourage anyone to reach for their dreams!

Amazon.com.au

Little People, Big Dreams Matching Game

Little People, Big Dreams Matching Game

Manufacturer: Rock Point
Recommended Age: 3 and up

Develop your memory skills and learn more about inspiring women with this game featuring artwork from the internationally best-selling Little People, BIG DREAMS series! This game features 20 women, including famous scientists, writers, activists, artists, and adventurers; kids will match their faces to win! The game also includes a 9" X 9" biography card with a synopsis of each woman's life, and rules to play the game as a traditional concentration game, a storytelling memory game, or a solitaire game. Fans of this series will also like the Little People, Big Dreams learning cards, also for ages 3 and up.

Amazon.com.au

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Plush Doll

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Plush Doll

Recommended Age: 3 and up

"I dissent!" declared this plush doll — if not with her voice, than with her distinctive dissenting jabot collar! This 11" plush from the Unemployed Philosophers Guild pays tribute to groundbreaking lawyer and Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. It comes with a detachable tag featuring a portrait of Ginsburg, interesting facts, and quotes. High-quality plush and embroidered details create a friend you'll delight to have keep you company on your desk, study carrel, or chambers.

Amazon.co.uk
Amazon.com.au

Frida Kahlo Plush Doll

Frida Kahlo Plush Doll

Recommended Age: 3 and up

Why not celebrate one of history's great women artists with this beautiful plush? The 11" Frida Kahlo plush from The Unemployed Philosophers Guild presents Kahlo in traditional Mexican dress — complete with skirt, blouse, scarf, and earrings — and with flowers in her hair. Kahlo's admirers can also check out the Frida Kahlo Finger Puppet / Magnet and the Frida's Frocks and Smocks Magnetic Dress-Up Set.

Amazon.com.au

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Bobblehead

Ruth Bader Ginsburg Bobblehead

Manufacturer: Royal Bobbles
Recommended Age: 6 and up

Whether you know her as Ruth Bader Ginsburg or the Notorious RBG, there's no question that Ginsburg has played a key role in the legal fight for equality in America! Now, you can pay tribute to this pioneering legal mind with this 8" figure from Royal Bobbles. This bobblehead is made of high-quality polyresin and is hand-painted, depicting her in her iconic robe, ponytail, earrings, glasses, and black lace gloves. It's the perfect way to honor a woman who's left her mark on American law and culture!

Amazon.com.au

Rosie the Riveter Bobblehead

Rosie the Riveter Bobblehead

Manufacturer: Royal Bobbles
Recommended Age: 6 and up

"We can do it!" declared Rosie the Riveter, and millions of women answered her call! This wartime recruiting symbol that brought women to factories and shipyards across America has since become an icon of feminism. You can pay tribute to her with this hand painted 8" bobblehead from Royal Bobbles, which depicts her in her working clothes and red bandana, flexing her arm to show her strength.

Amazon.com.au

Rosie the Riveter Paper Dolls

Rosie the Riveter Paper Dolls

Manufacturer: Paper Studio Press
Recommended Age: 6 and up

This book of vintage fashions honors Rosie the Riveter and her female co-workers! Three paper dolls are included, as well as 26 authentic outfits of the 1940s including work clothes, casual dresses, smart suits, evening gowns, and a war-time wedding dress. The book includes a story about Rosie the Riveter and notes about the fashions of the day. The set is a great way to teach her just what "We can do it!" meant to the women of World War II.

Amazon.com.au

Michelle Obama Bobblehead

Michelle Obama Bobblehead

Manufacturer: Royal Bobbles
Recommended Age: 6 and up

As a lawyer, a First Lady, a human rights advocate, and more, Michelle Obama has inspired millions of girls and women! Now, you can have her on your desk or shelf to encourage you, thanks to this bobblehead from Royal Bobbles. This 8" bobblehead is hand-painted and comes in a collector's box. It's the perfect reminder to keep moving, keep trying, keep a sense of humor, and keep reaching for your dreams.

Amazon.com.au

Famous American Women Coloring Book

Famous American Women Coloring Book

Manufacturer: Dover Publications
Recommended Age: 6 and up

This carefully researched coloring book spotlights the achievements of 45 prominent American women, from social reformer and suffragist leader Susan B. Anthony to Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. Portraits of Harriet Tubman, Barbara Walters, Amelia Earhart, Oprah Winfrey, Margaret Mead, and other noted figures are featured, along with biographical captions about each woman. For two coloring books that focus on early American history, check out Heroes and Heroines of the American Revolution and Heroines of the American Revolution, both for ages 7 and up.

Amazon.com.au

Rosa Parks Inspiring Women Doll

Rosa Parks Inspiring Women Doll

Manufacturer: Mattel
Recommended Age: 6 and up

Pay tribute to "the Mother of the Modern Civil Rights Movement" Rosa Parks with this doll from Barbie's Inspiring Women line! This articulated doll depicts Parks in period-accurate clothing and accessories that will remind you of pictures of this Civil Rights icon. The set comes with the doll, a doll stand, and a Certificate of Authenticity, perfect for display or as an empowering option for the toybox.

Amazon.com.au

Rosie the Riveter Action Figure

Rosie the Riveter Action Figure

Manufacturer: Flat River Group
Recommended Age: 6 and up

Generations of women have been inspired Rosie the Riveter, who has been an icon of women's empowerment for over fifty years! This 5 1/4" tall vinyl action figure is based off the famous "We Can Do It!" poster, which was inspired by a photo of Naomi Parker Fraley; it has articulated joints and comes in an illustrated window box. She's great for pretend play or for anyone who appreciates the role Rosie the Riveter has played in women's history.

Amazon.com.au

Famous African American Women Coloring Book

Famous African American Women Coloring Book

Manufacturer: Dover Publications
Recommended Age: 6 and up

Forty-five beautiful coloring pages highlight achievements of such notable women as Coretta Scott King, Maya Angelou, Harriet Tubman, Mae Jemison, Hattie McDaniel, Toni Morrison, Sojourner Truth, Ella Fitzgerald, Leontyne Price, Shirley Chisholm and many others. Each entry also includes a short biographical caption about the featured woman.

Amazon.com.au

Rosie the Riveter Puzzle

Rosie the Riveter Puzzle

Manufacturer: EuroGraphics
Recommended Age: 8 and up

Howard Miller's iconic emblem of female strength, Rosie the Riveter, is picture perfect in this 1000-piece puzzle! This puzzle from EuroGraphics is made in America and features easy-fit pieces made of sturdy, recycled cardboard. It's finished with vegetable-based inks and has an assembled size of 19.25" x 26.5". It's beautiful enough to display — if you don't decide take it apart for more puzzling fun!

Amazon.com.au

Ibtihaj Muhammad Doll

Ibtihaj Muhammad Doll

Manufacturer: Mattel
Recommended Age: 6 and up

Ibtihaj Muhammad is an inspiring role model: she was a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Fencing Team, the first Muslim American woman to wear a hijab to compete in the Olympics, and the first female Muslim American athlete to earn a medal at the Olympics with her 2016 bronze in the Team Saber event! Now, Barbie pays tribute to her groundbreaking career — and provides better representation to girls across the country who rarely see a doll like them — with this doll from their Inspiring Women line. The Ibtihaj Muhammad Barbie doll is fully posable and is dressed in her fencing uniform, complete with hijab, sabre and mask. The set includes a doll, a doll stand, and a Certificate of Authenticity.

Amazon.com.au

America's First Ladies Coloring Book

America's First Ladies Coloring Book

Manufacturer: Dover Publications
Recommended Age: 7 and up

Since the nation's founding, America's First Ladies and other female presidential relatives have played an important — and often unsung — role in national and international politics. This gorgeous coloring book from Dover Publications features 44 line drawings to color of these women in authentic settings as official hostesses. Each image includes a biographical caption to encourage you to learn more about the women pictured. It's a wonderful introduction to the contributions that have been made the by the women of the White House!

Amazon.com.au

Color Your Own Mary Cassatt

Color Your Own Mary Cassatt

Written by: Mary Cassatt
Recommended Age: 7 and up

Color 30 black-and-white illustrations of masterpieces by the great American Impressionist Mary Cassatt, best known for her paintings of mothers and their children. Enjoy famous works like The Bath, Young Mother Sewing, Mother's Kiss, Maternal Caress, and others. Replicate her work, or create your own color palette. Perfect for the art-loving Mighty Girl!

Famous Women in American History Card Game

Famous Women in American History Card Game

Manufacturer: U.S. Games Systems
Recommended Age: 7 and up

These playing cards work as a standard deck of cards (2 through Ace, with suits of spades, hearts, clubs, and diamonds), but each card offers information about an important woman in history, giving details of her accomplishments and an insight into her life. Fun, practical, and educational, the uses for these cards are nearly endless! For another card game celebrating influential American women, check out the American Women Authors card game.

Amazon.com.au

Women Who Dare Knowledge Cards: Volume I

Women Who Dare Knowledge Cards: Volume I

Manufacturer: Pomegranate
Recommended Age: 8 and up

This collection of Knowledge Cards pays tribute to forty-eight inspiring women who have made deep and lasting contributions in such varied fields as aerospace, the performing arts, literature, sports, and peace. With portraits on one side and profiles on the other, these 48 fact-filled Knowledge Cards are a great source of condensed information all in a deck the size of a pack of playing cards! For stories about even more inspiring women, check out Women Who Dare Knowledge Cards: Volume 2.

Amazon.com.au

Nellie Bly 300-Piece Puzzle / Game

Nellie Bly 300-Piece Puzzle / Game

Manufacturer: Pomegranate Kids
Recommended Age: 9 and up

Travel around the world — in only 72 days — with daring investigative journalist Nellie Bly! Assemble this beautifully illustrated 300-piece puzzle that pays tribute to her adventure, then use it as a game board as you follow her steps. Along the way, you'll learn fascinating facts about this trailblazing journalist's life and work. It's sure to inspire her to learn more about this fascinating figure — and maybe to plan her own around-the-world adventure someday!

Amazon.com.au

Feminist Icon Cross-Stitch Book

Feminist Icon Cross-Stitch Book

Recommended Age: 9 and up

Combine crafting with a lesson in feminist icons with this book of cross-stitch patterns by Anna Fleiss and‎ Lauren Mancuso! It combines capsule biographies of each woman with a cross-stitch portrait. A section at the beginning teaches new cross-stitchers the basics, including how to select quality materials for your celebration of these inspiring women. This fun book features patterns for embroidering twenty iconic women — like Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, suffragist Susan B. Anthony, author Virginia Woolf, and pop superstar Beyonce — and ten empowering feminist sayings.

Color Your Own Great Paintings by Women Artists

Color Your Own Great Paintings by Women Artists

Manufacturer: Dover Publications
Recommended Age: 9 and up

If she loves great art, she'll love this coloring book! Thirty striking works by noted female artists appear in this collection, which ranges from conventional portraits, such Vanessa Bell's depiction of her sister, Virginia Woolf, to a pioneering abstract painting by Sonia Delaunay. Other landscapes, still lifes, and portraits include works by Frida Kahlo, Mary Cassatt, and Berthe Morisot. Replicate the originals or let your imagination run wild with your own color scheme!

Amazon.com.au

LEGO Women of NASA Building Kit

LEGO Women of NASA Building Kit

Manufacturer: LEGO
Recommended Age: 10 and up

Build a tribute to some of the ground-breaking women who took American into space with this much-anticipated set from LEGO Ideas! This fan-designed set features astronomer Nancy Grace Roman; computer scientist Margaret Hamilton; astronaut and physicist Sally Ride; and astronaut, physician and engineer Mae Jemison, each as part of a vignette depicting their role with NASA. It's a wonderful way to inspire the women in STEM of future generations!

Amazon.com.au

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