Local author’s children’s books help kids deal with bullying, domestic violence

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Topics like bullying and domestic violence can be difficult to talk about with children, but one Stateline resident is helping to make it easier, through colorful pictures and stories kids can understand.

Two years ago, Rea Jones came up with the idea of creating a book series just for kids.

“You know there are different situations that are going on in children’s lives that we don’t even know about, because they never talk about it,” she said.

Earlier this year, Jones published “Zi Meets Karma,” the first of her series which teaches a valuable lesson about kindness.

“I put it in a way where it’s rhyming, but repetition where kids can say it over and over again. It’s kind of teaching them to recognize words, as well as giving them a good topic, or something real to talk about.”

Recalling an interaction with a little girl at her first book signing, Jones says it motivated her to move on to her next book.

“[She said] I already read that book and I am not being bad no more,” Jones recalled. “That was probably, like my biggest highlight of the book.”

Book number two deals with domestic violence. As a victim herself, Jones says starting the conversation with younger children early on can help in the long run.

“Sometimes, by the time it’s middle school, it’s almost too late, because their ‘acting out’ behavior turns into criminal behavior,” Jones said. “If we can get the kindergartner to discuss ‘I’m scared, because my mom and daddy are yelling at each other,’ maybe somebody can step in and help that. The earlier kids get this information, the better, because it just grows with them.”

Jones hopes to have her second book published later this year. The third volume will talk about incarcerated parents.

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