I’ve recommended My Hopscotch Journey and now I’m happy to share with you my interview of its author, Kajal Dharod.
Very often we wonder. What kind of books should I give my kids to read? Should it just be stories? Or should there be an element of learning as well?
Today, I want to introduce you to someone who didn’t just wonder, but went ahead to create the kind of books that she felt parents need.
Today I present to you, Kajal Dharod, founder of Your Learning Capsules and its flagship brand Vitamin Simple.
Kajal is a mother of twins and describes herself as a “mommy-teacher.” She wanted to make learning fun for her little ones and in the process, she created her own books.
I read a couple of her books and was eager to know the woman behind it all. This is what she has to say.
Author Interview: Kajal Dharod
I really loved the concept of your, I won’t call it a book, as it is so much more than that. Why did you decide to write these kind of books instead of just story books?
Your Learning Capsules, my passion venture is aimed to introduce the concept of engaged and integrated learning with a focused goal, “to make learning Simple and Fun.”
Stories are a great way to infuse knowledge and make the information stick with you. Many kids find it hard to go through books passively (just reading through it). There are many ways to make stories interesting and educative, like dramatic story telling, puppet shows, or anything that can make the process of reading more engaged and active. When you look around there are not many integration concepts in the market, but very disparate elements – you have free standing charts or workbooks, then you have great story books, puzzle boards, toys ,story tellers , and so much more , all aimed to help in the learning process. With these books I wanted to bring the fun of toys, crafts and apps together with the classic art of story telling and make reading and learning an interactive process. The basic underline was not how much you read, but more about how you comprehend and learn.
When did you first start writing and what were the hurdles you faced?
My first book was published in October’2017, just in time for Diwali. I was fortunate that it gave me an instant success, and we sold about 800 copies in 2 weeks. As a small business just starting out this was a confident booster, and it helped me gauge the market for such books. When writing iDiwali, I wanted to retell the traditional Ramayana story as I have known it growing up, and make it stick with the kids. With preschoolers at home, it was a perfect testing ground; the kids instantly fell in love with stickers and applying knowledge and their learning like emotions, basic Math, and more alongside this beautiful and epic story. Like all small businesses, I continue to face basic issues like marketing, distribution channels, logistics etc. , and slowly keep working to better the process. It’s a long haul.
What is the next book you are working on?
I am working on a series of Educational Indian Mythology books right now – Krishna, Ramayana and more. There are a lot of new mythology books coming in the market, some which have presented wonderful illustrations, some which have educated the audience with different insights and some which made it simple for kids. With my new books, I aim to provide an educational insight into the beautiful teachings from our Epics, at the same time the treasured teachings from Science, to Math, Modern Engineering to History , and simple moral stories. Our Indian Epics have a lot to offer. I am working hard to write these books, keeping them simple and match it to realism where I can. Make them interactive so the kids can truly indulge and enjoy our beautiful epics, and as always bring in the fresh Vitamin Simple Twists.
Is there anything you would like to say to our young readers who dream of writing some day?
Writing is an art. Art is about expression, and not about perfection. Everyone should write; it’s a good holistic exercise for the mind and the body. Writing helps kids communicate, connect and create. It facilitates kids to learn, have fun and indulge with all their senses. Start with writing 2-4 lines every day, anything simple around you. And one day you will bloom!