Denverite Julie Federico has been a school counselor for more than 20 years.
This experience has provided her with a gift of being able to break down difficult societal topics into a preschooler’s language.
“I don’t have all the answers,” Federico said, “but I’m willing to start the dialogue.”
Federico got started writing her children’s books in 2007. Since then, she has written a number of books for infants to pre-teens on a variety of topics that include anger control, domestic violence, school safety and friendship.
The books can serve as a tool for parents to start a conversation between them and their children, Federico said. They offer emotional intelligence, Federico said.
Many of “the problems discussed in the books can be resolved when you talk about them,” Federico said. “If you can start with the younger generation, we can start to make a difference.”
Her latest book came out in May 2021 and has two titles: “Blackness is Creative” and “God Made Me Black Because He’s Creative.” It is intended for preschoolers and elementary children.
An author’s note in the book states: “As a child’s first book on race relations, I wanted to begin the conversation in an age-appropriate manner. This book will get the conversation started, but requires further study as kids get older … Ideally, you will have many conversations with your child about race over the years … When we can teach a community of 2-year-olds to identify and define discrimination, we are onto significant societal change.”
Q&A with Julie Federico
In your opinion, why is it important to have conversations about important social topics when children are young?
In the world we live in, children encounter difficult social topics at a very young age. Knowledge is power, please educate and protect your children.
On ‘Blackness is Creative.’
This generation is the last generation that will tolerate systemic racism. They won’t stand for it. I know this from the teenagers at the schools (she’s worked at). They’re vocal about wrongdoings.
What do you hope readers get out of your book/s?
I hope to give parents dialogue to use with their children when they discuss difficult topics. Some parents say nothing on these topics because they do not know what to say. I give parents the language to use with their children to open doors of communication and educate children.
Where to get the book
All of Julie Federico’s books can be found on her website, juliefederico.com. Federico is also available to speak at parenting groups, schools, foster agencies and youth-serving organizations. Her contact information can be found on the website.
Federico has a couple of ideas for parenting books. Her ideas include tough parenting issues such as how to keep your kids and teens safe, and how to connect with your teen.