Women’s History Month

Description & History

The observance of Women’s History Month began with the first International Women's Day celebrated in 1911. In 1978, the Sonoma County (California) Commission on the Status of Women launched “Women’s History Week” encompassing the date of International Women’s Day March 8, to address the lack of women’s history in the K-12 curriculum. The celebration spread and grew in popularity causing President Jimmy Carter to proclaim the first Women’s History Week in 1980. In 1987, the celebration grew to the entire month of March when Congress passed Public Law 101-9. From 1988 to 1994 Congress passed resolutions authorizing the President to proclaim the month of March as Women’s History Month and since 1995 the month has been proclaimed annually.

The 2024 theme is Women Who Advocate for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.


Professional Learning Resources

Next up – March: Women’s History Month
In this Knowledge Quest post, blogger Connie Williams shares videos and primary sources focusing on the perceptions of women and work throughout history and gives examples of how the resources can be used with leaners. 

Women's History Month
This website from The Library of Congress includes a large collection of resources for teachers from government agencies and organizations including, National Gallery of Art, and the National Endowment for the Humanities, among others. 

15 Ways to Celebrate Women’s History Month 2022
This 2022 article from Live Your Dream overviews 15 ways we can personally celebrate Women’s History month from expanding our own knowledge of women’s history and hosting local events to supporting women-owned businesses and showing support on social media.

Women’s History Month for the Classroom
Teach about the challenges and accomplishments of women throughout history with these lessons, activities, background reading, and more from the NEA.


Learner Engagement Resources 

Jess Wade's One-Woman Mission to diversify Wikipedia's Science Stories
Use the story of Jess Wade to launch a look at Wikipedia as a source for information, the writing criteria for editors, and the work that needs to be done to tell the stories of women and underrepresented groups.

A Vital Resource for Women’s History Month: Women and the American Story
Read about the Woman and the American Story units that personalize North American history beginning in 1492 with stories of women. Each featured unit focuses on building empathy and understanding, fostering critical thinking, and personalizing history through individual lives. You will meet some exemplary humans in these units.  

LOC Free to Use and Reuse: Women's History Month
Need primary sources for the month? Begin with the Library of Congress Free to Use and Reuse collection.