Children’s author uses stories to teach problem-solving skills to students

Children’s author uses stories to teach problem-solving skills to students
Julie CookAward-winning children’s author, Julia Cook, spent Dec. 5 with Kent Prairie Elementary students using stories to help them interact, communicate and deal with everyday life in the digital age.

“One example is when students play video games,” said Cook. “It can be very easy for them to get from A to B in a game but it may not be that easy in real life and they sometimes give up. Through stories, I try to teach them that they need to persevere even if things get tough.”

She read some of her books with the students on topics like Internet safety, the importance of rules, being accepting of others and kidnap prevention. Cook is a former teacher and middle school counselor who wrote a story for a tattling problem she was dealing with at her school. The story got published and since then she has had 86 books published. She says kids will let you in if you read with them.

“Kids want to know ‘what’s in it for me?’ All of my books but one are written in the first person so students can relate to the characters. I also use humor and empathy in my stories to further engage them.”