bookworms delight!

bookworms delight!

bookworms delight

happy international women’s day! for IWD17 I dusted off this blog to post about something that’s very close to my heart: female representation in children’s books.

books are my fave kind of gift to give or receive, so when an email arrived in my inbox from a local independent kids’ store late last year entitled bookworms delight!,  I was pretty excited. my excitement soon gave way to dismay. they’d divided the books up into a list for ‘boys’ and a list for ‘girls’.

amazing babes was on their list for girls. frida kahlo was on their list for girls. there was not one book on the ‘boys’ list that featured a female protagonist. there was however, a male protagonist on the girls list. insert eye-roll here.

there were so many reasons this email was disappointing, but to pick just one, if all the books we’re reading to boys have male protagonists, the message we’re sending to boys is that the male perspective is the primary point of view. that the male experience is the normal, default experience. we need to undo this way of thinking.

how can boys get comfortable with seeing girls as leaders, or even simply as equals, if they’re never read books where a girl is the main player?

what was even sadder, was that on the list for boys they’d included a book called tough guys have feelings too, so they kind of were getting the idea about the need to break out of traditionally prescribed behaviour for men and women…. but then not quite.

so here are a few books with girls as the main character that we enjoy at our house. you can click through to read more about them. rose (5) and max (9) enjoy all of them in no particular order.

9 of our fave picture books about girls, for girls and boys 

1.  fancy nancy

2. just another ordinary day 

3. clubs: a lolly leopold story

4. best friends for frances and the frances books

5. knuffle bunny

6. rosie revere, engineer

7. princess smarty pants

8. ada twist, scientist

9. sleeping beauty, a mid-century fairy tale

as a side note, to make this list I gathered up a bundle of books that we regularly read from the kids’ bookshelves. what I found when I went to link the list for you, is that quite a few of the books by australian female authors, like the kinder hat and whisper wild freedom child were out of print. you may want to look for these in your local library.

happy reading,

bron x

p.s if you have any picture books you’d like to recommend, I’d love to hear!

girl to know: penny from inspector gadget

girl to know: penny from inspector gadget

penny from inspector gadget

yes, she is fictitious but she is amazing and her gadgets are THE BEST.

when I was a kid, inspector gadget was one of the very few parent-approved tv shows I was allowed to watch. I was probably about 7 or 8 when my mum said, ‘I think you’ll like this show.’ and I did. because of penny.

penny was the niece of inspector gadget, an accident-prone detective cyborg (so weird when I write it out like that).

each episode of the french-canadian produced cartoon centred around the mishaps her uncle encountered as he tried to solve a crime.

while inspector gadget was bumbling through crime scenes, penny and her sidekick, a dog called brain, were quietly saving the day with the help of her gadgets — a computer book and watch, which were basically a super fancy tablet and apple watch (but with a laser) a couple of decades before they were invented.

I spent many an after-school arvo pretending to be penny, marching around the backyard with a blue book in my bag, imagining it was my satchel and computer. as a little girl it was so great to watch a cartoon showing another little girl (with the same hairstyle!) as the strong, capable character.

oh, also, the inspector always took credit for things working out, but the viewer knew it was really penny and brain’s doing. sadly satisfying.

penny from inspector gadget

while I was googling/reminiscing about penny, I discovered that she was voiced by cree summer, an afro-canadian actor. I think the show would have been even more awesome had penny looked more like cree. (yes please to a remake with this.)

bron x

welcome to sfr, a blog about being a girl

welcome to sfr, a blog about being a girl

welcome to something for rose.

last week donald trump was made president-elect of the united states. I’m deeply saddened by this on a number of levels. and I guess my answer to this disappointment is to make something that affirms what I believe in. in the face of something ugly, I’d like to make something beautiful.

so I’ve created this blog to record and curate things I’d like to share today, or one day, with my daughter, rose. she’s four.

she often asks me what I liked, or what I felt like when I was her age. things like, ‘were you nervous when you started school?’ or ‘did you like princesses when you were little?’ and ‘did you love your mum so much too?’ (my answers: no, yes and yes).

it’s also a place for me to share things I loved when I was growing up, or that, if I had a time machine, I’d show my younger self. things and ideas that are interesting, beautiful, pro-girl and fun.

there are so many ways to be a girl, and being female is awesome. I hope rose always feels that way too.

if you know of any wonderful books, products, ideas etc I could share with rose, please drop me a line at: somethingforrose@gmail.com

bron x