Denver author Patrice Gendelman knows how hard it is to help children cope with life situations. Her new books, the Hannah Rose Knows series, are designed to do just that.
The child-centric e-books are written for children ages 3-10 years and help them cope with sometimes complicated issues such as divorce, disabilities, anger and much more, including inappropriate touching.
Hannah Rose was the twin of Patrice Gendelman's youngest child, but she passed away late in the pregnancy. When the babies were born, she changed her name to Hannah Rose on instinct as they filled out the death certificate. Mrs. Gendelman wanted her daughter's name to be in the stories and, going off of the belief that every child knows everything in the womb but forgets it during birth, her son thought that the books should be called Hannah Rose Knows, since she did.
Her first book, "Nobody Should Touch Your Private Parts But You!" was something that she says she has drilled into her kids heads from a very young age. The statistics for sexual abuse and child molestation are frightening. The book talks to kids in an age appropriate way about personal boundaries and asks them to make a list of people that they would tell. The book emphasizes the importance of telling someone as she knows, like most people, of multiple cases of unreported instances.
According to Mrs. Gendelman, the story ideas come from her own children and the children they are friends with. She says that 99% of the books come from their stories. "You'll Never Regret Doing the Right Thing", for example, is a book about telling the truth and is based on an actual incidence in a class.
There are currently over 20 books in the series with more on the way. All of them go through a rigorous process before being finished, including going through a focus group of children to see how they respond. The tips and tricks for dealing with issues come partially from adult self-help books and are passed through a children's therapist for quality assurance.
She says she chose the e-book format because she wanted them all to be published at once. The issues are dear to her heart and she was insistent that children, parents and educators have access to all instead of one at a time. The biggest benefit of the e-book format is that you buy the book and can reprint it as many times as needed. This is extremely helpful to educators especially.
While many subjects, such as divorce and death are not necessarily a daily occurrence in our children's lives, Mrs. Gendelman believes that the contact with other children who are going through stressful issues affects our children and the books can help them understand what their friends are dealing with.
Coloring books are available with all books to give them something to do. Patrice Gendelman found that children retain information better when they are multi-tasking. She recommends giving them the coloring book version to keep their attention while you read the book. Each book also has discussion ideas to reinforce the concepts.
Twenty percent of sales from the Hannah Rose Knows series goes to charities. One of Gendelman's sons is autistic, so the first charity, The Joshua School in Denver, is very dear to her. The second, Tumaini Ministries has a fascinating story of hope and survival that is also related locally. Look for more on the charities coming up!