Read Across America Day: Ten Inspiring Female Authors

Read Across America Day: Ten Inspiring Female Authors

These female children’s book authors and illustrators have significantly impacted the world of children’s literature. They continue to inspire young readers with their imaginative and thought-provoking stories. On this Read Across America Day, let’s celebrate their contributions and encourage young readers to pick up a book and immerse themselves in a world of adventure and imagination.

Elevate Your Classroom with Engaging Lesson Plans and Author Study Activities

Beverly Cleary

Beverly Cleary is the author of many beloved children’s books, including Ramona Quimby, Age 8 and Henry Huggins. Her relatable characters and real-life situations have made her books a staple of children’s literature for over 50 years.

Lois Lowry

Lois Lowry is an American author who wrote over 40 children’s books covering many themes and subjects. She has won two Newbery Medals for the most distinguished children’s book of the year, in addition to numerous awards and critical acclaim.

Kate DiCamillo

Kate DiCamillo is a Newbery Medal-winning author of children’s books, including The Tale of Despereaux and Because of Winn-Dixie. Her stories are full of heart, humor, and a touch of magic, making them a favorite among young readers.

Amanda Gorman

Amanda Gorman is an American poet and author who gained attention after performing at the inauguration of President Biden. Her picture book Change Sings: A Children’s Anthem, encourages acts of kindness through rhyming verses. Gorman’s works have made her an important voice in contemporary literature.

Toni Morrison

Toni Morrison was a Nobel Prize-winning author and one of the most important voices in contemporary American literature. Her novels, including Beloved and Sula, explore themes of race, gender, and identity with stunning grace and insight.

Amy Tan

Amy Tan is a notable literary figure whose bestsellers have generated widespread, multiethnic appeal. From novels and short stories to children’s books and essays, Tan’s work often touches on complex themes, including her award-winning book, The Joy Luck Club, which recollects her experiences growing up as a Chinese American.

Jane Austen

Jane Austen was a pioneering novelist whose wit and wisdom continue to captivate readers today. Her works, including Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility, are considered some of the greatest works of English literature.

Harper Lee

Harper Lee was the author of To Kill a Mockingbird, a novel that explores racial injustice and prejudice in the American South. The book remains a classic of American literature and continues to inspire new generations of readers.

Judy Blume

Judy Blume is an American author known for her honest and empathetic writing style, particularly in her popular books for children and young adults. Her works, such as Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret and Forever, have significantly impacted the genre of children’s literature.

Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter was an English author and illustrator best known for her beloved children’s books featuring animals such as Peter Rabbit, Jemima Puddle-Duck, and Squirrel Nutkin. Her whimsical stories and charming illustrations are adored by generations of readers and have been translated into numerous languages.

All linked articles can also be found on Britannica Library.

Lesson Plan: Celebrating Women’s Contributions to Literature

In honor of these incredible female authors on Read Across America Day, we’ve created a lesson plan and author study activities to help students explore their work and impact on literature and society.


Beverly Cleary; Washington State Archives. Lois Lowry; Courtesy of Lois Lowry. Kate DiCamillo; Courtesy of Kate DiCamillo. Amanda Gorman; Pat Benic—UPI/ Toni Morrison; Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Amy Tan; Hindustan Times/Getty Images. Jane Austen; © North Wind Picture Archives. Harper Lee; Terrence Antonio James—Tribune Content Agency LLC/Alamy. Judy Blume; © Carl Lender (CC BY 2.0). Beatrix Potter; Hulton Archive/Getty Images.


About The Author

Mickey Tennis

Education Consultant - Bilingual Specialist
Mickey Tennis is an Education Consultant and Bilingual Specialist. She is originally from Wisconsin but has worked and lived abroad for the past 9 years and currently lives in Mexico. She has been an English language teacher in Thailand, an Environmental Educator with the Peace Corps in Mexico, and an online educator to youth around the world. She is TESOL and TEFL certified, as well as a certified Environmental Educator.

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