Phil Lollar - Featured Children's Author

Aug 30, 2023 5 min read
Phil Lollar - Featured Children's Author
Phil Lollar (1956 - )

Explore the history behind the beloved characters of Adventures in Odyssey through the written works of Phil Lollar and learn about a variety of inventions and the character qualities that are needed to be an inventor.

Phil Lollar (August 6, 1956 - ) is well-known for his significant contributions to Focus on the Family's Adventures in Odyssey audio adventures series. Lollar has contributed as a voice actor, director, producer, and writer for more than 250 episodes. He has also contributed to Jungle Jam & Friends, The Radio Show, Little Dogs on the Prairie, 3-2-1 Penguins, and Paws and Tales.

A natural-born communicator, Phil began acting at age five and won multiple acting awards throughout high school. He studied directing, music, and film-making in college and began using these skills at Focus of the Family after completing his studies. Phil and his wife have one grown son.

In addition to audio contributions, Phil has authored the following:

Phil continues to use his God-given talents to create entertaining media that also presents scriptural truths for children of all ages. 1

Enjoyable Works

The first book in a series about the background of beloved John Avery "Whit" Whitaker

The first book in a good vs. evil series; will Whit be able to save Odyssey?


One of the best ways to organically learn the location of each of the United States is by completing puzzles. Completing these puzzles often will greatly aid in this endeavor. Here are some of our favorites.

Nearly every state is its own piece, giving children a good understanding of the shape of each
A portable version

Starting in middle to upper elementary school, children will begin to identify all of the United States and their capitals. Flashcards provide basic practice but can also be used in a variety of ways. These flashcards also include a third column demonstrating an item or person well-known in each state. Cutting out each row and folding on the dividing lines will create quick flashcards. These flashcards can also be separated and set up to play memory match. For younger children, select 5-10 state and capital matches to master at a time. With the state side of the card up, call out the capital and have children place a figurine on the correct state on a map or puzzle.

Learning the states and capitals by region can be particularly effective, as children are less likely to become overwhelmed by the number of states. Finding a song that includes the states and capitals also will aid in children's memory work. Finally, including visual cues, whether based on the shape of the state or by coloring a state on a map in accordance with what is found there is an easy way to provide additional ways to remember states, capitals, and their locations. For example, Louisiana is shaped like an L, Michigan like a mitten, Oklahoma like a pot, and coloring California orange or Georgia in a peach color will remind children of the respective fruits from those states.


Phil Lollar skillfully weaves Biblical truths throughout the conversations that occur within the adventures that the characters in Odyssey have. Mr. Whitaker, "Whit," in particular, teaches the children of Odyssey foundational Biblical principles. This copywork demonstrates part of such conversations where Whit teaches the children that their interests are God-given for His use.

“God puts passions in our hearts for a reason.”
-Mr. Whitaker

We should encourage our children to recognize the variety of interests that God has given them and to seek out ways to use those interests and skills to impact the world for Christ.


Within the fictional town of Odyssey, Whit was well-known as an inventor, creating an ice cream parlor and discovery center for the children to enjoy. For example, he created an Imagination Station, where children have adventures that teach them more about God. Most of Whit's inventions are successful and add new tools for children to explore. The character qualities of determination, curiosity, and creativity are written into the nature of Mr. Whitaker; children listening to or reading about Mr. Whitaker are exposed to these qualities as well, demonstrating their necessity in becoming an inventor. Whit also has an exhibit in Whit's End called "Whit's Flop", his first invention which did not succeed. Through this exhibit, Whit teaches kids that failure is inevitable and should not be seen as the end of exploration.

Continuing in this venture, children will explore various inventors and their inventions from throughout history. Using this table, children can make flashcards or separate them to create a memory match game. Children will be fascinated to recognize the many inventions that they rely upon daily--light bulbs, printing press, telephone, automobile, and the dishwasher. For a fun activity, try going without the telephone, light bulbs or the dishwasher for a period of time.

Children could select an inventor, complete more research about him or her, and create a poster or brochure highlighting the work. To create a brochure, turn a piece of paper on its side and fold into thirds. Be sure to include the following information along with other facts of interest:

  • name and picture of inventor
  • birth and death date, as applicable
  • invention(s)
  • any failures
  • historical events during the inventor's life
  • importance of invention
  • how life would be different without the invention

Additionally, providing children with a box of supplies – paper, glue, string, container, etc.– gives them a chance to explore and create inventions of their own.

Additional Resources

Explore more Adventures in Odyssey themed material by visiting Christianbook's Adventures in Odyssey shop.

Read and create a book about various inventors
Explore 50 inventors beginning in ancient times


1. Phil Lollar - Wikipedia

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