Until recently, my 4 (almost 5) year-old was convinced that princess was a viable career path. I remember receiving an email from her preschool about career day dress-up, requesting that parents explain to their children that princesses, mermaids, fairies, and pirates were not real career options. Interestingly many of the “problem careers” were stereotypically female. If you think about the children in your life, you may notice that little boys will rattle off real career options (albeit also highly gendered options) like fireman, builder, and policeman whereas girls tend to mention magical or false ones. While I don’t expect a preschooler to have his/her career path mapped out, but I find it curious that girls often aspire to futures that are untenable. I’m convinced that books and television have a large role in these early dreams. I spent years of my childhood convinced that I was going to be a detective thanks to Nancy Drew. Then thanks to my grandmother’s favorite TV show, I decided to become a lawyer. For the record, I became neither a detective nor a lawyer.
I say “until recently” because E’s career aspirations changed a few months ago after reading a book that one of our readers recommended: Rosie Revere, Engineer. Keep reading to see what Emma thought of the book. Read more