Melissa’s Story

22 March 2024

Books and reading have always been a passion of mine – my mum tells me I always had a book in hand and was even known to have read the dictionary as a child (oh dear!). I still have some of my favourite childhood books which I am now able to share with my own children.

Ever since I was a child I knew I wanted to work with children. I spent much of my uni years and summers working in nurseries and knew I wanted to teach. So after my degree in Bath I embarked on my Primary PGCE at Southampton Uni. 

I then taught for two years in local schools in Bournemouth and Poole before deciding to move back up to Bath with my now husband. I joined an infant school in Bath as a freshly qualified teacher and quickly became English lead across the school. I saw first-hand the benefits of reading to children. Firstly, stimulating their imagination and developing their understanding of the world, but also developing language skills, expanding vocabulary and supporting with developing empathy and emotional connections.  

My career in teaching developed and I became Key Stage lead and Acting Deputy Head – I loved my job but hadn’t really realised that it was slowly taking over my home life and was extremely stressful! My weekly hours were increasing to a crazy amount, I rarely had an evening and my weekends were 1 day if I was lucky!

I moved back down to Bournemouth where I grew up in 2019 whilst pregnant with my second child, my intention being to enjoy my maternity leave and then find another teaching job! Covid had other ideas……

Since taking Maya, my now 7 year old, to baby classes I had always thought about potentially running classes myself but this was always in another lifetime, if things were different etc etc! There was always a reason to play it safe and stick to what I knew despite the stresses and the difficulties of juggling a teaching career with family life!

Then Katie rang me from Australia to let me know that she was also moving back to the area and was expecting her third baby – as was I! The stars were aligned – 

We spent many a pregnant beach walk – (or waddle!) thinking of ideas, what skills we could combine and then StoryBox was born. With the support of each other we knew we could create something special so our maternity leave was spent creating and planning!

Now two years in I can honestly say I love what I do. Not only do I get to utilise my skillset, I get to continue to promote a love of reading all whilst working around my family. My skillset is increasing too – use of social media, branding and a new appreciation of music – no, I don’t play an instrument but yes I still run Musical StoryBox classes!

My youngest daughter has been coming to StoryBox since she was 6 months old (when it was created!) and now I get to attend Katie’s classes with her. Without being biased (ha ha) it’s our favourite time of the week! I can do the school run – both times of the day, I can choose where and when I work. I have afternoons to (attempt) to keep my house clean and I can provide for my family too! Plus, I get to do all of this whilst working with my best friend! 

By taking on a Musical StoryBox franchise, you too can create a better work- life balance for you and your family, knowing you have the full support from us every step of the way. You can create a successful business doing something that you love!

Why not take that step and come and join us? What have you got to lose?

Weekly Classes

Weekly storytelling classes for babies and toddlers; a multi sensory experience starting that love of books and music from the word go!

School Sessions

A fully immersive and inclusive experience to better understand and engage with a favourite story through music and play.

Birthday Parties

Choose to bring your child's favourite story to life with one of our birthday party packages​, including a special birthday gift!