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A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon

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The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson--made famous by the award-winning film Hidden Figures--who counted and computed her way to NASA and helped put a man on the moon! Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn't have the same rights as others--as wrong as 5+5=12. She knew it was wrong that people thought women could only be teachers o The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson--made famous by the award-winning film Hidden Figures--who counted and computed her way to NASA and helped put a man on the moon! Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn't have the same rights as others--as wrong as 5+5=12. She knew it was wrong that people thought women could only be teachers or nurses--as wrong as 10-5=3. And she proved everyone wrong by zooming ahead of her classmates, starting college at fifteen, and eventually joining NASA, where her calculations helped pioneer America's first manned flight into space, its first manned orbit of Earth, and the world's first trip to the moon! Award-winning author Suzanne Slade and debut artist Veronica Miller Jamison tell the story of a NASA "computer" in this smartly written, charmingly illustrated biography.


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The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson--made famous by the award-winning film Hidden Figures--who counted and computed her way to NASA and helped put a man on the moon! Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn't have the same rights as others--as wrong as 5+5=12. She knew it was wrong that people thought women could only be teachers o The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson--made famous by the award-winning film Hidden Figures--who counted and computed her way to NASA and helped put a man on the moon! Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn't have the same rights as others--as wrong as 5+5=12. She knew it was wrong that people thought women could only be teachers or nurses--as wrong as 10-5=3. And she proved everyone wrong by zooming ahead of her classmates, starting college at fifteen, and eventually joining NASA, where her calculations helped pioneer America's first manned flight into space, its first manned orbit of Earth, and the world's first trip to the moon! Award-winning author Suzanne Slade and debut artist Veronica Miller Jamison tell the story of a NASA "computer" in this smartly written, charmingly illustrated biography.

30 review for A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon

  1. 4 out of 5

    Angie

    What a lovely book. I was, of course, familiar with her story because of the movie Hidden Figures. But this is just everything a picture book biography can and should be. If our school budget is not ridiculously low again next year (👎🏻😕) I want to get it!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Nrithya

    Lovely children's book on NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson. Great way to introduce kids to the subject of careers - To dream big, to ask questions and to enjoy and celebrate work.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Jo Oehrlein

    Picture book about Katherine Johnson that includes some life details that haven't been in other picture books. Like the emphasis on her supportive family. When the book wants to say that something is wrong, it uses a math "equation" that isn't equal. Example: "As wrong as 10-5=3." The illustrations really add to the story.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Alicia

    Both the story and the pictures are magical in this STEM biography picture book of Katherine Johnson. Who wouldn't be inspired by her tale? She was super smart and moved up grades before professors had to create new classes in order to teach her what she insatiably wanted to know and THEN ended up using in her job at NASA doing the calculations for space travel. She was a trusted computer who calculated orbit and return and fought back against oppression-- she deigned to enter the meeting of all Both the story and the pictures are magical in this STEM biography picture book of Katherine Johnson. Who wouldn't be inspired by her tale? She was super smart and moved up grades before professors had to create new classes in order to teach her what she insatiably wanted to know and THEN ended up using in her job at NASA doing the calculations for space travel. She was a trusted computer who calculated orbit and return and fought back against oppression-- she deigned to enter the meeting of all men when she was entitled to be in the meeting (it just hadn't been done before that a woman attended) and she pushed the boundaries of women in science and particularly black women in science. This is endearing, hopeful, uplifting, and a powerful example of how women shaped and changed the world. The cover is everything.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Martha

    Katherine loved numbers since she was a little girl, and she was always superb at math. When she reached high school, at age 10 there wasn't one for black students. Katherine's family moved so that she would be able to attend a good high school. After graduating from West Virginia State, she became a math teacher, before discovering a job at Langley Aeronautics Laboratory as a "computer" a name given to women whose job was calculting data for male space engineers for airplane designs, and for th Katherine loved numbers since she was a little girl, and she was always superb at math. When she reached high school, at age 10 there wasn't one for black students. Katherine's family moved so that she would be able to attend a good high school. After graduating from West Virginia State, she became a math teacher, before discovering a job at Langley Aeronautics Laboratory as a "computer" a name given to women whose job was calculting data for male space engineers for airplane designs, and for their flight plans. After she proved herself as an inventive thinker Katherine was invited to join the space team, to plan for the flight of the first astronaut in space. She continued calculating, and planning, reaching new horizons, until she finally was responsible for calculating and charting the entire moon flight. This story highlights Katherine's inquisitive mind, always asking questions, and her resilience, never taking a "no" for the answer. A beautifully written biography inspiring girls of all cultures in STEM fields, to challenge the barriers reaching for the sky and beyond.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ryan

    This story is not a new one. Adult readers meet Katherine in the popular book and movie Hidden Figure. This book brings that story down for children to read and learn about. Katherine is an important historical figure because she proved that you can be both a woman, and black, and still do impossible things like help launch people into space. The story is well written, easy to understand, and keeps the reader's attention. The illustrations are beautiful and a perfect match. #BBRC #AtoZofpictureb This story is not a new one. Adult readers meet Katherine in the popular book and movie Hidden Figure. This book brings that story down for children to read and learn about. Katherine is an important historical figure because she proved that you can be both a woman, and black, and still do impossible things like help launch people into space. The story is well written, easy to understand, and keeps the reader's attention. The illustrations are beautiful and a perfect match. #BBRC #AtoZofpicturebooks

  7. 5 out of 5

    Teresa

    Showcased in the movie Hidden Figures, Katherine Johnson’s remarkable life gets its own highlight in this empowering and moving picture book. I love that it has little math jokes running through the story to tie it together and to lighten the mood a little as the racism and sexism can be hard to bear. This fascinating book shows kids what an inspiration Katherine was, and should be read by everyone.

  8. 4 out of 5

    pages for breakfast 📚☕️ (formerly Readage)

    PROGRESS: 1000 BOOKS BEFORE KINDERGARTEN challenge Read together May 9, 2020 Book #28 in our 1000 Books Before Kindergarten challenge Logan and I read another stellar children’s book a few days ago — this time about a real-life figure we were already somewhat familiar with: Katherine Johnson. If you’ve been living under a rock the last few years, you might not have heard of this awesome lady, but if you’ve seen the 2016 movie “Hidden Figures” or paid any attention to NASA, you certainly know about PROGRESS: 1000 BOOKS BEFORE KINDERGARTEN challenge Read together May 9, 2020 Book #28 in our 1000 Books Before Kindergarten challenge Logan and I read another stellar children’s book a few days ago — this time about a real-life figure we were already somewhat familiar with: Katherine Johnson. If you’ve been living under a rock the last few years, you might not have heard of this awesome lady, but if you’ve seen the 2016 movie “Hidden Figures” or paid any attention to NASA, you certainly know about her. (In fact, you also probably know about Dorothy Vaughan and Mary Jackson, as well.) Katherine Johnson was the last surviving member of this empowered trio until she passed away at the age of 101 on February 24, 2020. The beautifully-illustrated picture book “A Computer Called Katherine” was released in spring 2019 to much acclaim. Since our public library has been closed for a while now, we can’t access a physical copy of the book, so we read an ebook copy on Mama’s phone. We know without a doubt that the experience of the physical book would have made the reading of this book even more wonderful, and we hope to revisit it as soon as possible. We won’t reveal the details of the book because we definitely want you to pick it up for yourself, but we will tell you without reservation that this is one great title, for littles and adults alike. The amazing (I can’t find a better word!) artwork by illustrator Veronica Miller Jamison and the biographical narrative by children’s book author and scientist Suzanne Slade provide ample evidence that they are wholly devoted to their subject. The cheerful full-page spreads visually invite the reader into the world of NASA and American society during the time in which Katherine was doing her history-changing work. It highlights Katherine’s lifelong ambition and intellectual gifts in a way that young children will devour, making her personal determination and enthusiasm to achieve and excel an important talking point. This book will help start the conversation about personal goals and the importance of having dreams — no matter one’s gender or skin color. It will also demonstrate how critical it is to disregard any voices saying (sometimes shouting) that something can’t be done simply because it’s never been done before. The story of Katherine’s entire life proves that if we are able to do something in our lives, we must then be willing — no matter what. It’s simply inspiring from the first page to the last, and a must-read for young and old alike. 5 stars for the artwork alone. One of our favorite reads so far! Link to original blog review: https://babystolemybook.wordpress.com...

  9. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    A fantastic biography of Katherine Johnson in picture book format for elementary readers. The book describes her childhood and experiences in segregated schools. It goes on to describe the challenges and limitations that she faced as a woman in science. Katherine Johnson perseveres and becomes a trusted mathematician and integral part of NASA's earliest space flights.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Jaime

    My students and I loved this book! It was beautifully illustrated, engaging, and inspiring. It prompted several important discussions and kindled an heightened interest in math and science. My class adored it, and even my reluctant readers enjoyed retelling the story through the pictures.

  11. 5 out of 5

    LeeTravelGoddess

    YES! 💚💚💚

  12. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Great introduction for the younger picture book crowed. Engagingly told in a age-appropriate manner with lovely illustrations.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Katalina Townsley

    The inspiring true story of mathematician Katherine Johnson--made famous by the award-winning film Hidden Figures--who counted and computed her way to NASA and helped put a man on the moon!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

    An inspiring picture book biography of an amazing woman. Doesn't give a lot of information on Johnson, but a good introduction for children.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    A great picture book biography of Katherine Johnson and her important work for NASA during the space race. The illustrations are beautiful, and the story is simple enough that it can be used with younger audiences. Highly recommended!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Chandler Taylor

    When Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon in July 1969, uttering his famous words about it being one small step for man, he became the immortal face of the space race. Armstrong was part of the Apollo 11 crew that included not only the astronauts but the engineers and mathematicians on the ground as well. The prospect of landing a man on the moon seemed nothing more than a work of science fiction for many, something that would require years of mathematical expertise and unprecedented experimentat When Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon in July 1969, uttering his famous words about it being one small step for man, he became the immortal face of the space race. Armstrong was part of the Apollo 11 crew that included not only the astronauts but the engineers and mathematicians on the ground as well. The prospect of landing a man on the moon seemed nothing more than a work of science fiction for many, something that would require years of mathematical expertise and unprecedented experimentation to make a reality. For nearly fifty years, the labor of NASA’s most essential workers, the female “computers,” was overshadowed by the accomplishments of the male engineers and astronauts. Suzanne Slade’s A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon seeks to shed some light on the story of one of those women. Katherine Johnson began work as a NASA “computer” in 1953. She joined a large pool of women tasked with doing calculations and other work the men “thought [was] boring and unimportant.” Even so, her skill with numbers became crucial to the success of the numerous space missions NASA was working on throughout the 1960s. Astronaut John Glenn, the first man to orbit the Earth, famously refused to fly unless Katherine personally approved the calculations for his trip. Katherine loved to count and she loved learning. As a child, she eagerly counted down the days until she could start school. For her, math was a straightforward language with simple answers to complex problems but the world around her was not quite as easy to understand. In her hometown, there were arguments about whether children with different skin colors should attend the same schools or whether women could have the same jobs as men. Katherine believed the obstacles put in her way by these arguments were wrong because all she wanted was to continue learning and working with numbers. Her family moved to a new town so she could attend high school – at only ten years old! At this new school, she was introduced to geometry and other new mathematical concepts. Katherine had an insatiable hunger for knowledge that stayed with her throughout her life. While at West Virginia State College, a professor taught more challenging math classes just for Katherine. Her career prospects after graduation were limited to teaching and nursing because she still lived in a world full of prejudice, but she believed women could be anything, including mathematicians. She found the perfect job at the Langley Aeronautical Laboratory where they were hiring women to work on calculations that would help the male engineers with their designs. While she worked with numbers all day, she began to wonder what her calculations were being used for and she didn’t keep her curiosity silent. By asking lots of questions, Katherine found herself breaking down walls that had previously limited what women were allowed to do in the field of aerospace engineering, becoming the first woman to attend the engineers’ meetings. She joined the team working on sending the first astronaut into space and, using her impressive skills with geometry, calculated the ideal time the spacecraft should blast off. After this successful, albeit short, space flight, Katherine was almost replaced by a new machine that could work out calculations must faster than any person. Luckily for Katherine, this machine did not inspire confidence in the astronauts and her job was safe. The biggest challenge for Katherine and NASA came in the 1960s when both the Soviet Union and the United States became obsessed with putting a man on the moon and winning the “space race.” Katherine knew that this would be a difficult journey to calculate because the numbers would have to be perfect; any mistakes could result in the spaceship missing the moon entirely! There were many moving parts to consider in solving this geometry problem and many people believed in could not be solved at all. But Katherine knew every math problem has an answer and she set out to prove it. The big day came and Katherine watched nervously as Apollo 11 lifted off. Four days later, Neil Armstrong stepped onto the moon’s surface, planted an American flag, and Katherine breathed a sigh of relief. This short biography details Katherine’s unique relationship with numbers. Slade uses mathematical equations to illustrate Katherine’s understanding of the racism and sexism of the times in which she lived: “Katherine knew it was wrong that African Americans didn’t have the same rights as others – as wrong as 5 + 5 = 12. Paired with Veronica Miller Jamison’s watercolor images, there is no question that Katherine saw the world from a different perspective; her brain was always buzzing with information. The chalk diagrams included throughout Jamison’s images visualize both Katherine’s thought process and the flight paths she helped calculate. Slade includes a pair of striking quotes from Katherine alongside a small collection of archival photos at the end of the book. A timeline tracing Katherine’s life from her birth to President Obama awarding her the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2015 offers further points of exploration for the interested reader. Influenced by the popularity of the Hidden Figures film released in 2016, this book joins a host of others focused on Katherine and NASA’s female “computers” released in 2018/2019, including Counting on Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Saved Apollo 13 (Helaine Becker, 2018); NASA Mathematician Katherine Johnson (Heather E. Schwartz, 2018); Hidden Figures (Margot Lee Shetterly, 2018); Reaching for the Moon (Katherine Johnson, 2019); and Katherine Johnson (Ebony Wilkins, 2019). IL: LG BL: 4.3 AR Pts: 0.5 AR Quiz: RP

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lynn

    Very well written introduction to Katherine Johnson and her outstanding courage, determination and skills. The story is appealing and interesting for youngsters and the back matter is excellent and inludes both an author and an illustrator's notes Veronica Miller Jamison's illustrations are lively and fun with numbers and math cleverly included. A terrific STEM book but a great choice for any picture collection.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ben Truong

    A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon is a children's picture book written by Suzanne Slade and illustrated by Veronica Miller Jamison. It chronicles the life of Katherine Johnson – an instrumental part of getting the first man on the moon. Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson is an African-American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. manned spaceflights. Durin A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon is a children's picture book written by Suzanne Slade and illustrated by Veronica Miller Jamison. It chronicles the life of Katherine Johnson – an instrumental part of getting the first man on the moon. Katherine Coleman Goble Johnson is an African-American mathematician whose calculations of orbital mechanics as a NASA employee were critical to the success of the first and subsequent U.S. manned spaceflights. During her 35-year career at NASA and its predecessor, she earned a reputation for mastering complex manual calculations and helped the space agency pioneer the use of computers to perform the tasks. Slade's text is rather simplistic, straightforward, and informative. It detailed the childhood of Katherine Johnson and how she loved counting and numbers. It also detail the trails that she had to face when she wants to go against societal norms, because the color of her skin and her gender. There is an additional and helpful timeline in the back of the book that shows her life’s work. Jamison's illustrations are drawn rather well, reminiscent of vivid watercolors, and depict the narrative rather well. The premise of the book is rather straightforward. It depicts the life of Katherine Johnson from her early childhood through adulthood. It is a wonderful introduction to an important chapter in history and an incredibly inspiring woman who helped changed the world. It stresses the important messages about perseverance and the courage to break through barriers in order to achieve dreams. All in all, A Computer Called Katherine: How Katherine Johnson Helped Put America on the Moon is a wonderful book about perseverance, courage, and hard work through the wonderful example of Katherine Johnson.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Tara Gunstenson

    “A Computer Called Katherine” is a beautifully illustrated picture book about the mathematician Katherine Johnson, who helped NASA to put the first man on the moon. Katherine sped through mathematics in school, went to college at age 15 and became a math teacher. From there, she got hired as a “computer” at a research company and eventually worked her way up to work with the engineers on their mission to send the first man into space, and eventually to the moon. Katherine had to overcome many st “A Computer Called Katherine” is a beautifully illustrated picture book about the mathematician Katherine Johnson, who helped NASA to put the first man on the moon. Katherine sped through mathematics in school, went to college at age 15 and became a math teacher. From there, she got hired as a “computer” at a research company and eventually worked her way up to work with the engineers on their mission to send the first man into space, and eventually to the moon. Katherine had to overcome many struggles on her journey to working at NASA. She was an African American woman in a completely white male dominated field. She was told no over and over throughout her life, but she refused to take no for an answer. Every time people tried to limit Katherine because of her race or gender, the story illustrates her response with incorrect math problems. For example, “Back then, people said women could only be teachers or nurses. Katherine know that was wrong- as wrong as 10-5=3.” Overall, Katherine’s story can be an inspiration to anyone who is told by society that their potential is limited by their race, gender, age, physical abilities, etc. The language in the book is fairly simple and geared towards younger children if you are reading it allowed, however, the message of the book is for anyone. This book could also be read by mid-elementary students if they are learning about this particular time in history or about historical people. There is a lot of good information and facts about Kathrine Johnson’s life that they could use if they are researching for a project or report.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Bonnie Jean

    My third grader is currently going through a phase of only wanting to read books which are "real" but finding nonfiction books at his reading level that also spark his interest is a bit of a challenge sometimes. We found this one kind of at random while scrolling through a list of nonfiction Kindle books available through the library and since it was sort of about space (one of his big interests), he decided to check it out. We both really enjoyed biography about Katherine Johnson, one of the co My third grader is currently going through a phase of only wanting to read books which are "real" but finding nonfiction books at his reading level that also spark his interest is a bit of a challenge sometimes. We found this one kind of at random while scrolling through a list of nonfiction Kindle books available through the library and since it was sort of about space (one of his big interests), he decided to check it out. We both really enjoyed biography about Katherine Johnson, one of the computers who worked at NASA during the space race. I was really impressed by Katherine's family and their dedication to making sure she got a good education- they had to move so that Katherine could go to high school, because her town didn't have a high school for black students. L also liked the story and especially appreciated the way that Katherine counted everything (he tried to follow her example and count how many steps it took to walk to school on his first day back in person), and he also really liked how when the book talked about Katherine knowing something was unfair, it used a math equation to talk about how wrong it was (for example, when talking about how when Katherine was a child, some people believed that black and white children shouldn't go to the same schools: "Their arguments seemed wrong to Katherine- as wrong as 5 + 5 = 12").

  21. 5 out of 5

    Jewely Lewis

    This incredible historical biography is on my favorites shelf because of the ever-so relevant story it tells. The book follows the life of Katherine Coleman – a very influential women mathematician whose calculations allowed for space travel and ultimately the U.S. putting the first man on the moon. The story begins with a young Katherine who is an eager and enthusiastic learner – making her relatable to children. The story continues to follow all of the hard work and effort she had to put in to This incredible historical biography is on my favorites shelf because of the ever-so relevant story it tells. The book follows the life of Katherine Coleman – a very influential women mathematician whose calculations allowed for space travel and ultimately the U.S. putting the first man on the moon. The story begins with a young Katherine who is an eager and enthusiastic learner – making her relatable to children. The story continues to follow all of the hard work and effort she had to put in to accomplishing all that she did – including fighting for her rights as an African American woman in a male dominated profession. The book puts a beautiful emphasis on the effort and process Katherine followed to be in a position where she could pursue her dreams. With scaffolding, this text could be read aloud to most any grades but is likely most appropriate for second grade and above as a result of vocabulary usage. There is a lot of character development in this story that could be used as an instructional tool for reading comprehension lessons. There is also a timeline at the back of the book that could be used for non-fiction comprehension strategies. This text could also be used for literacy instructional purposes by having students tease out key details and facts implicitly and explicitly given throughout the book. This text also would be a great tool to connect to mathematics and possibly work on some tier 3, math specific, vocabulary terms. Additionally, this story may work as a transition into reading more about and investigating the history of women’s rights.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Boling

    6/6/2019 ~ Fabulous illustrations. I appreciated the way math infused so many pages, for example on the 3rd spread, when the text discussed the conflict over racial segregation and the challenge of women joining the work force, the illustrations used two angles to highlight the ways in which the groups were moving apart. I also thought the text did a credible job of highlighting the challenges Katherine faced as a woman AND as a person of color. I found it interesting that on the 6th spread the 6/6/2019 ~ Fabulous illustrations. I appreciated the way math infused so many pages, for example on the 3rd spread, when the text discussed the conflict over racial segregation and the challenge of women joining the work force, the illustrations used two angles to highlight the ways in which the groups were moving apart. I also thought the text did a credible job of highlighting the challenges Katherine faced as a woman AND as a person of color. I found it interesting that on the 6th spread the text discussed the fact that Katherine found the right job, because the research center was hiring women. Race was not discussed. However, the illustrations showed Katherine working in a room with other Black women. This is especially interesting because the author appears (from her photo) to be White, while the illustrator is Black. One of the things that has often struck me about Katherine's story, and that seems to be underplayed, is the sacrifices her family made for her to continue her education. This text does briefly allude to her family's move of 120 miles so Katherine could go to high school when she was 10. This book is a must have in any elementary library collection.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Marissa Skrivan

    This children's biography on Katherine Johnson talks about the important issue of equality through her struggles as being African-American and also a woman. Her intelligence, courage, and persistence is shown as she continues to work to prove that she, and woman, could be anything. After college she worked at a research center in Virginia. She was a curious woman and continually asked questions and was always looking for answers. The story eventually shows how she advanced and began working with This children's biography on Katherine Johnson talks about the important issue of equality through her struggles as being African-American and also a woman. Her intelligence, courage, and persistence is shown as she continues to work to prove that she, and woman, could be anything. After college she worked at a research center in Virginia. She was a curious woman and continually asked questions and was always looking for answers. The story eventually shows how she advanced and began working with the space team. The engineers and astronauts, specifically John Glenn, came to trust and respect her calculations and her as a person. She became the one to calculate the trajectory of the moon landing and accomplished her goal of proving a woman can do anything. This text would be a good book to read with students at the end of third grade or beginning of fourth grade. There are some references to math equations that could be hard to understand which is why I would use this with slightly older students. The book would be a good read to teach equality and perseverance for students, especially young girls and African-American students.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Baker

    Kathrine Johnson is a mathematician for NASA. In her time period there were nearly no opportunities for women in the field of math. She was finally able to land a job at Virginia research center while doing her career but also advocating for women engineers. This book has complex ideas for the age recommended. There are inferences referring to racism and sexism which could perhaps be something 4-8-year olds don’t understand. This era is one for children to know though. Teachers or parents can ex Kathrine Johnson is a mathematician for NASA. In her time period there were nearly no opportunities for women in the field of math. She was finally able to land a job at Virginia research center while doing her career but also advocating for women engineers. This book has complex ideas for the age recommended. There are inferences referring to racism and sexism which could perhaps be something 4-8-year olds don’t understand. This era is one for children to know though. Teachers or parents can explain the civil rights movements, the space race, and the role that women were expected to play in society at this time. I admire Kathrine’s persistency when it comes to knowing how talented and intelligent, she is and not stopping until she worked for NASA. I would love to show young girls this book so they can understand that they can do anything they set their mind to even if it is considered a “male dominated” work force. I love this book and will have to buy the hard copy for my future library.

  25. 5 out of 5

    The Reading Countess

    Many were not aware of the important work Katherine Johnson and many others did to help push forth the U.S. space program until the award winning film, Hidden Figures, debuted. Written by prolific author Suzanne Slade, a mechanical engineer who once worked with Delta IV rockets, this beautifully illustrated picturebook biography is as inspirational as it is interesting. 🌕 Growing up in a time where being a Black woman meant that her opportunities were limited, Johnson soon outgrew the two room sch Many were not aware of the important work Katherine Johnson and many others did to help push forth the U.S. space program until the award winning film, Hidden Figures, debuted. Written by prolific author Suzanne Slade, a mechanical engineer who once worked with Delta IV rockets, this beautifully illustrated picturebook biography is as inspirational as it is interesting. 🌕 Growing up in a time where being a Black woman meant that her opportunities were limited, Johnson soon outgrew the two room schoolhouse she attended and advanced to college at 15. Quickly jetting ahead in her career, she held the trust of NASA and John Glenn as she double checked the computer projections for space travel to the moon and back. 🌕 A COMPUTER CALLED KATHERINE speaks to the power of possibility, the hope for a brighter future wherever you may lay your head currently, and a testimony to the indomitable spirit of never giving up. 🌕

  26. 4 out of 5

    Heidi

    Summary: Katherine was an African-American girl who loved school and loved math. However, many people discouraged her due to their prejudices against women and people of color. But Katherine knew they were wrong. Katherine kept learning more and more about math. Then one day Katherine helped engineers calculate the location and time of the first rocket launch and landing. It was a success so then Katherine helped NASA's computers calculate how to get a man to the moon. The rocket launched and fou Summary: Katherine was an African-American girl who loved school and loved math. However, many people discouraged her due to their prejudices against women and people of color. But Katherine knew they were wrong. Katherine kept learning more and more about math. Then one day Katherine helped engineers calculate the location and time of the first rocket launch and landing. It was a success so then Katherine helped NASA's computers calculate how to get a man to the moon. The rocket launched and four days later man took their first steps on the moon. Age Appropriate: K-3rd Review: This book is a good book to talk about discrimination against women and people of color. This book tells a story that is often left out of history. This book gives diverse representation that is often overlooked. This book is a great encouragement for girls who are interested in STEM.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Jessie

    This was going for some interesting circles through the story (introducing geometry and coming back to it, introducing parabolas and coming back to them, starting with counting up and then having the countdown). I liked how cohesive that made the story feel. I really disliked how math was used in the book, though. The counting and text at the beginning didn't align, and the not-equations being compared to social and political wrongs were my least favorite parts. We get a pretty significant "not li This was going for some interesting circles through the story (introducing geometry and coming back to it, introducing parabolas and coming back to them, starting with counting up and then having the countdown). I liked how cohesive that made the story feel. I really disliked how math was used in the book, though. The counting and text at the beginning didn't align, and the not-equations being compared to social and political wrongs were my least favorite parts. We get a pretty significant "not like other women" moment -- something close to that phrase is *literally* in the text -- and bleh. Johnson was extraordinary! And that's shown throughout the book; the other computers don't need to be put down to show how amazing Johnson's work was.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Nancy

    Katherine Johnson is an amazing woman. She learned math at a very young age, skipped a few grades in school and was enrolled in college when she was ten. She studied Math and went to work for NASA, computing the math and science to put a manned rocket into orbit and later send a man to the moon. Her math was perfect and her story was made into the film "Hidden Figures." There is also a book for adults out by the same name. This is a picture book but there's lots of math scattered throughout. It w Katherine Johnson is an amazing woman. She learned math at a very young age, skipped a few grades in school and was enrolled in college when she was ten. She studied Math and went to work for NASA, computing the math and science to put a manned rocket into orbit and later send a man to the moon. Her math was perfect and her story was made into the film "Hidden Figures." There is also a book for adults out by the same name. This is a picture book but there's lots of math scattered throughout. It would probably be best for 5-10 year old kids. It's an interesting story, and a good way to introduce a kid to math.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Gabrielle Palmisano

    Amazing!!! This book has such a great story. Katherine wasn’t afraid to ask questions and sometimes it seems she made others question themselves. This book is great to read to children because it shows how Katherine wasn’t afraid of math or men. I loved how Katherine was trusted more than the computer by one of the astronauts. Because technology was new, I completely understand why he wanted Katherine to check the computers measurements. Although Katherine was not the first woman to work at this Amazing!!! This book has such a great story. Katherine wasn’t afraid to ask questions and sometimes it seems she made others question themselves. This book is great to read to children because it shows how Katherine wasn’t afraid of math or men. I loved how Katherine was trusted more than the computer by one of the astronauts. Because technology was new, I completely understand why he wanted Katherine to check the computers measurements. Although Katherine was not the first woman to work at this company, she was the first to attend the engineer meetings and help the astronauts reach their goals.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Judy Sobanski

    A wonderful story about Katherine Johnson, who through her extraordinary math skills, helped NASA put a man on the moon. Suzanne Slade covers Katherine's life starting when Katherine was a young girl discovering her love of numbers, all the way through her working for NASA and breaking down barriers set up to keep women from achieving their potential. There is plenty of back matter including author and illustrator notes, a timeline and actual photographs to encourage further learning and discuss A wonderful story about Katherine Johnson, who through her extraordinary math skills, helped NASA put a man on the moon. Suzanne Slade covers Katherine's life starting when Katherine was a young girl discovering her love of numbers, all the way through her working for NASA and breaking down barriers set up to keep women from achieving their potential. There is plenty of back matter including author and illustrator notes, a timeline and actual photographs to encourage further learning and discussions. Veronica Miller Jamison's artwork is colorful and expressive.

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