Independent Dames, written by Laurie Anderson and Illustrated by Matt Faulker, is a whimsical book that addresses all the ignored contributions that women made during the American Revolution.
The book begins by addressing the other half of history, the part that we aren’t taught in schools. Believe it or not, women actually held a vital role during the Revolutionary War and the book’s main focus is to take you on a journey through those significant roles. Women and girls supported the troops by providing them with food, clothes, and shoes for survival. They also spied on the enemy and passed on any battle plans they heard while eavesdropping. “Pioneer dames were extra tough. They fought off enemy troops by pouring boiling water on them and firing muskets from frontier forts.” Each page pays respect to the actual women in history who preformed these jobs and provides a time line for the Revolutionary War.
Independent Dames should be used in teaching students about the American Revolution. It helps students understand how “everyone” was involved in winning the war against Britain. This book can be used with SOL:
USI.6 (a, d) Students will demonstrate knowledge of the cause and results of the American Revolution by: identifying the issues of dissatisfaction that lead to the Revolution and explaining reasons why the colonies were able to defeat Great Britain.
- Women of the Revolutionary War: Provides background information on the roles of women during the American Revolution. This is a kid friendly website designed for late elementary/middle school students. It has background information on a few important women and it even provides a list of jobs women took over while the men were away at war.
- Revolutionary Women of South Carolina rovides a lesson plan overview for teaching 8th graders about the roles of women during the American Revolutionary. Students have to compare and contrast the roles of women from today’s world vs then.
- Women in the Revolution: This site provides a 5th grade lesson plan for teaching students about the roles of women during the revolution. It includes a matching game for students to play.
Book: Independent Dames
Author: Laurie Anderson
Illustrator: Matt Faulker
Publisher: Simon and Schuster Children’s Press
Publication Date: June 2008
Pages: 40 pages
Grade Range: 3-5