Review by Polly Conway, Common Sense Education | Updated November 2013

SheHeroes

Positive site inspires girls but could engage better with updates

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Grades
3-7 This grade range is a recommendation by Common Sense Education and not the developer/publisher.
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Pros: Site features a diverse team of women, each with her own story to share.

Cons: Site design could be better, and more frequently updated content would make it feel dynamic and active.

Bottom Line: SheHeroes is a solid site where you can learn about strong women and the choices they've made to achieve their dreams.

You can use SheHeroes in several different ways; its videos would fit very well into a health, AVID, or even civics class. You can watch a video in class, or you can assign kids a video to watch at home and ask them to come to class ready to discuss a featured heroine. You could also use the site as a jumping-off point for students to find their own SheHero. Ask them to interview or write a report on a woman in the community whom they respect.

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SheHeroes is a website that features videos of women telling their stories of being successful in a variety of careers. The site "empowers 8- to 12-year-old girls of all backgrounds to dream big, explore their interests and passionately pursue careers in any field regardless of gender." Profiled women include Verna Gibbs, a surgeon; Polly Baca, the first Hispanic woman in the Colorado State Senate; and Margaret Murnane, a laser physicist.

Students can watch each video and then go through the discussion questions with a parent or teacher. Girls will see that the women profiled on SheHeroes have faced obstacles, including gender bias in fields like science and technology, but have ultimately found ways to achieve their goals. The site's goal is to spread knowledge and awareness; its motto is “If you can’t see it, you can’t be it!”

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Students expecting to see highly visible success stories -- actresses or professional athletes -- will need to adjust to SheHeroes' cast of heroines; it includes CEOs, politicians, physicists, and more. These are the kinds of jobs that don't usually get a lot of attention, and women are often not given credit for breaking into these fields. The videos are engaging and short enough to keep younger kids' attention. The existing content is great, but it would be nice to see more fresh content -- the site hasn't been updated in a while, although its Facebook page is active. A few activities would also be welcome, such as a social media aspect or a game that invites students to participate on the site.

Students can learn that it's possible for women to succeed at any career they choose. They'll learn this by seeing the life stories of a handful of powerful women. By watching videos and following discussion guides, they'll discover that hard work, determination, and a fearless, can-do attitude are important. With more frequently updated content and additional activities for kids on the site, SheHeroes could be the perfect destination for girl power.

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Overall Rating
3

Engagement Is the product stimulating, entertaining, and engrossing? Will kids want to return?
3

Design is charming enough, although it would be nice if the site had more content. The videos are simple, short, and interesting to watch, with interviews interspersed with documentary-style backstories.

Pedagogy Is learning content seamlessly baked-in, and do kids build conceptual understanding? Is the product adaptable and empowering? Will skills transfer?
4

Girls will see these successful women not only as they are now but as they were growing up, making the choices that led them to the present. The SheHeroes featured are a wonderfully diverse group.

Support Does the product take into account learners of varying abilities, skill levels, and learning styles? Does it address both struggling and advanced students?
3

The page itself is pretty simple, and there's no log-in or data saving. An accompanying Facebook page posts inspirational pictures of women like the Iron Nun, an 83-year-old triathalon champ, and a blog features similar superstars. 


Common Sense Reviewer
Polly Conway Classroom teacher

Teacher Reviews

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Featured review by
Vann L. , Other
Other
3
Powerful Resources that Inspire!

Overall, I believe this is a good resource. This resource is a "basic" resource and offers great videos focused on careers. I enjoyed the ability to search for videos by subject area and the ability to locate a resource with lots of current (up-to-date) videos that students can watch and discuss. The discussion guides are also a nice touch for classroom use. Personally, I like the mission of the site to encourage and inspire young ladies to follow their dreams and explore various careers. The current "resources" tab does not have any additional resources and states "coming soon." I'd be interested to learn what the creators of this website have in mind for this section of the website. To take this website to another level, I think it would be interesting or fun if there were a place for kids to write to the person in the video and/or have some type of follow-up or extended learning opportunity via Skype or another form of social media. Overall, the site was pretty good.

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