Agatha Rodi is a passionate teacher (specialising in Dyslexia/STM/ADHD/Autism), writer and translator, who is based in Patras, Greece. She writes picture books, children’s nonfiction, poetry, fiction, e-rhyming children’s books, and short stories.
Agatha also serves as the Ambassador & Global Co-Host for Multicultural Children’s Day (MCBD) for Greece and is the Ambassador for International Read To Me Day for Greece.
To add to this impressive list, she is the Founder of Greek Children Read & Write, Creative Writing for Children completing their own books, and teaches English and French at her school in Patras.
Above all, Agatha is a passionate advocate for literacy and her mission is to promote Greek children’s books to the Diaspora.
Her mission is to empower students to write stories that will leave their indelible mark on readers’ mind. And Agatha’s educational background in teaching students with learning disabilities has given her a broader spectrum from which to approach various learning techniques and expand teaching strategies.
What Agatha enjoys most is writing stories that will encourage students to embrace their imperfections and ignite their spark.
“My love for writing children’s stories there was always in my heart. I bought books and read a lot. Ideas have started to flow since 1997, so I wrote down all these memories from my childhood. My professors at the University encouraged me to write short stories and poetry. I am grateful to them! They led me to discover my passion for writing stories for young learners, fiction, non-fiction, poems, Memoir,” says Agatha.
Born in the Peloponnese, Agatha was brought up in a village named Fostena, till the age of 7, when her family moved to Patras, where she has been living the most amazing moments of her life on her farm, out in nature, enjoying the meadows and mountainous area.
“While I was at high school, I started reading poetry, fairy tales and literature at the local library, showing a preference for English poets like Shelley, Shakespeare, or even Sherlock Holmes and Agatha Christie’s stories. I only saved money for books! They were very expensive, and we were struggling to make ends meet but the book covers displayed in bookshops were so inviting.”
From young Agatha believed she needed books to satisfy her thirst for knowledge and find a way to study as she couldn’t afford to attend University.
“I combined work as a Hotel receptionist, for 12 and a half years with my studies both in English and French Literature as well as being a scholarship recipient for Translation/Interpretation. I worked really hard, studying and working at part-time jobs for extra money to travel and know the world, to experience life and see with my own eyes the places I have read about,” she says.
Agatha believes multicultural books is the best way to promote literacy while embracing language and culture. She considers them as the sole medium to help students respect similarities and understand differences. She believes writing comes from the heart and children’s personal experiences can only transform the world we live in.
“Diaspora is descended from the Greek word diaspeirein, meaning “to scatter, spread about.” Greeks of the Diaspora are scattered all around the world and children need to know their true identity through the Greek language, the myths, the fairy tales, the traditions and customs that portray the Greek mentality and way of thinking. Children are the best Ambassadors to reflect the future, be that force of cultivating the ground to reconnect with the past and their grandfathers’ roots,” stresses Agatha.
According to Agatha, children of the Diaspora must keep the ties with the motherland, Greece, be fervent supporters of books and writings, become the new writers to spread Greek feelings and ideas around the globe, become the beacons in other continents and bring that missing light to people no matter their age.
“I hope Greek schools of the Diaspora and Greek writers find a common ground to work on promoting Greek culture and tradition offering the chance to children to experimenting themselves in writing and be inspired by the so talented Greek writers with the sole goal of Loving and knowing Greece!” says Agatha.
“When I was asked to be the Ambassador and Global Co-Host for Multicultural Children’s Day, I was thrilled and I thought that’s the opportunity to bring together Greek writers and Greek- American ones. The experience was really invaluable even for me because I met Greeks of the Diaspora from many countries around the world.
The children of the Diaspora will surely benefit by knowing how kids in Greece experience similar situations as them. The way they confront them incorporates that taste of something different, a wonderfully philosophical attitude, the funny side of certain sayings, and beliefs of everyday wisdom. It’s about keeping our identity alive.”