Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women


Thimmesh, Catherine.  Illus. by Melissa Sweet. Girls Think of Everything: Stories of Ingenious Inventions by Women. 2000. 264 pp. Lexile 960.

Despite restrictions on their education and careers, American girls and women have been responsible for a number of important inventions over the years. Thimmesh devotes two or three pages to each inventor and her invention, from the ever-useful brown paper bag to the also useful strong fiber Kevlar® that goes into bullet-proof vests.  The profiles of the women and descriptions of the inventions—some based on personal interviews--are brief and interesting, highlighting the need for the invention and process of designing it.  Collage illustrations make the book attractive while the endpapers give a timeline that includes more female inventors.

Reading Std #1: Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and implicitly, citing specific textual evidence to support conclusions drawn from it. Thimmesh contends in her introduction that some inventions are the result of curiosity while others come about by accident.  Have students find evidence, if any, for these contentions in the book.  Have them see if they find other motivations (such as financial) in the chapters.