Today we are excited to feature avid blogger and literacy advocate Melissa Taylor for the Oceanhouse Media Blogger Spotlight! She runs one of our favorite parenting blogs- Imagination Soup- and is also the author of Book Love: Help Your Child Grow from Reluctant to Enthusiastic Reader. See what she has to say about the importance of reading, book apps, and more below.
Oceanhouse Media (OM): When did you first create Imagination Soup? What was the inspiration behind it?
Melissa Taylor (MT): People used to ask me how I came up with such creative ideas to do with my kids. I thought, why not share what I do with other people who don’t have my background in education. So, I started blogging. At first, I did it just for fun while working as a freelance writer for magazines but it really has grown into a passion and a business.
OM: How did you come up with the name Imagination Soup?
MT: My husband thought up that name. We spent one evening brainstorming words and concepts for the blog – and would check if the URL was available. Kudos to him – I love the name!
OM: What is the mission or goal of your site?
MT: To share information with parents so they can make learning fun and part of everyday life.
OM: How has your site evolved throughout the years, and as your daughters grow older?
MT: Good question! Since I don’t have preschoolers anymore so I have to borrow friends’ kids to do some of my blogging ideas. Also, every year I’ve grown as a writer and storyteller.
OM: As the author of Book Love: Help Your Child Grow from Reluctant to Enthusiastic Reader, why do you think it is important for children to love reading?
MT: Reading is everything! It’s the way we learn new information, find we’re not alone in the world, and experience life from a new perspective. I wish the goal of early elementary was getting kids to love stories and books.
OM: How do you think book apps help inspire a love of reading for kids?
MT: Book apps give children another way to love stories. Technology is an enticing medium and so often motivates those kids who may not want to sit down with a paperback book. I’m a big fan of book apps!
OM: What piece of technology can you not live without?
MT: Oh, wow. Hard question. First, Google. Second, my Mac. I am a writer after all!
OM: What resources do you use to find out about the best apps for kids?
MT: I read a lot of reviews and buy a lot of apps that I find by searching key words in the app store. But it always comes down to what my kids and I actually enjoy.
OM: What children’s books do your daughters love right now?
MT: My 12-year old is really into Wendy Mass books – like 11 Birthdays. My 9-year old is devouring The Chronicles of Narnia.
OM: Who is your favorite Dr. Seuss character?
MT: This is so hard! I love the animals in Apples Up On Top because they’re so silly and lovable Horton, who dares to follow his convictions of kindness toward others.
Thank you so much to Melissa Taylor for participating in the blogger spotlight! Stay tuned for more.