Dr. Elana Ashley enjoys a close relationship with a vent figure she originally created known as Spokespuppet Splunkunio Splunkey®. Often over the years, when the duo worked together, Splunkey burst into song as a reminder that the highest of ethical values must always be the foundation for healthy and joyous living, learning and loving on Planet Earth. One day, Ashley decided it was the right time to take many of the important messages she had been teaching over the years and put them into written form ─ into the form of books which required children to develop their skills as readers, thinkers, speakers, listeners and writers.
A new children’s book and family series entitled Splunkunio Splunkey Detective and Peacemaker was born. The first book, Case One: The Missing Friendship Bracelet [printed in English and English/Spanish editions] targets the themes of friendship, teamwork, problem-solving and conflict resolution. This book focuses on the problem of loss and provides a helpful process for going about finding lost items. A CD is included. Accompanied by musical background, the author takes on the voices and personalities of the characters as she dramatically recites the full story in English.
Ashley authored an accompanying text for adults entitled Teaching Guide for Educators and Parents, which outlines various features and ideas found in the author’s first children’s and family book. The Guide provides curricular materials that help not only teachers and parents, but also counselors, social workers and other interested adults to use their dramatic, imaginative and artistic abilities to bring Case One: The Missing Friendship Bracelet to life for their students, children and clients, as well as for themselves. In general, issues are set up as a series of questions for children and adults to discuss and for which they will seek answers together. The themes include problems of loss, learning to relax, friendship, teamwork, building character and values, managing conflict, a peacemaking process and self-esteem. Many activities are suggested to involve children, including role play, dramatization and the use of puppets.
The second book, Case Two: Big Bully Holly Howler, was also printed in English & English/Spanish editions. Both books came out at the end of 2015. These books present children, families and teachers with methods for dealing with bullying behavior, providing at the story’s conclusion a series of questions for discussion and a poem entitled ‘Why Are You a Bully?’ The story is about how first grader Ellie Elephant transforms the bully into a friend. The cast of storybook characters have grown from the original three smart and likable puppets in The Missing Friendship Bracelet to a team of eight educated vent figures in Big Bully Holly Howler. Pick up your copy of the book to learn the strategies Ellie uses to make the bully’s transformation to a friend a reality.
The front cover of Ashley's two new books were exhibited at BEA conducted at McCormick Place, Chicago, May 11 - 13, 2016. The English-Spanish edition appeared in the BookExpoAmerica 2016 Catalog Archway Publishing for Simon and Schuster operated by Author Solutions:
"Is your child a bully, a victim or a bystander? Big Bully Holly Howler shoves kids to be first in the lunch line and snatches things from other students ─ all without the teacher's knowledge. Holly seems unstoppable ─ until Splunkey, a peace-loving detective, encourages Ellie and her best friend, Eli, to look at Holly in an entirely new way. In this delightful children's tale, youngsters learn creative ways to cope with bullies."
Author and illustrator Dr. Elana Ashley began getting known through a variety of meet-and-greet get-togethers at community organizations and restaurants, programs at public and private schools, exhibits and presentations at conferences, as well as through articles coming out about the author in newspapers and magazines in addition to the author being interviewed on television.
Ashley had a television news interview on Chicago CBS with Host Suzanne Le Mignot ─ July 17, 2016 [http://chicago.cbslocal.com/video/3432530-dr-elana-ashley-discusses-new-book-on-bullying/].
On Chicago VIA Times, Joe Mauricio hosted a television interview with Author Dr. Elana Ashley & Her Educational Colleague Ellie Elephant, June 26 – JULY 1, 2016 [https://youtu.be/W-KMogLuEQ8].
A half-hour cable interview took place with Host Dr. Suzanne Cahnmann at Highland Park Public Access Studio: Channel 19, September 6, 2016 ─ Cahnmann's Current Events Roundtable ─ Each Week of September, 2016: Tuesday - 6 pm; Wednesday - 4 pm:
In January of 2018, journalist and news writer Sue Masaracchia-Roberts interviewed Dr. Ashley about the topic of bullying.
Strathmore’s Who’s Who and America’s Registry of Outstanding Professionals honored the achievements and contributions of Dr. Elana Ashley by awarding her the title of Professional of the Year in Education and Entertainment for 2017, as well as for 2018 – 2019. Working with PR Newswire, these two companies awarded Dr. Ashley with a New York Times Square Appearance along with her books and puppets on two electronic screens. The author flew to New York City and watched at 8 am on April 3rd when the screens filled up, at which time a photographer Ashley had met that morning, John Curry, snapped a photo of her holding the English copy of her book Big Bully Holly Howler. In addition, Strathmore’s Who’s Who also honored Dr. Ashley as Industry Leader in Education and Entertainment for 2017 ─ 2019.
Further, Strathmore’s Who’s Who placed Ashley’s Interview on their website ─ https://strathmore-ltd.com/ ─ in an effort to help spread Dr. Elana Ashley’s messages about bullying issues and prevention strategies, as well as help promote her children’s books as valuable and powerful resources for parents, teachers, mental health professionals and all those who wish to work together to create a Bully Free America.
And with those thoughts in mind and wanting to broaden her base of people who would see and learn from her messages, the author decided to use her interview as the base of a new book that would offer an introductory foundation of information about bullying comprehension, prevention, intervention and resolution. She set to work on a preface to the book, followed by the interview. Lastly, she added two press releases that had come out through Strathmore’s Who’s Who and America’s Registry of Outstanding Professionals providing further information about herself.
Looking back at the materials presented and discussed in the interview, the author felt the ongoing back and forth of questions and answers needed some breaks for air and thought. So Ashley created eleven black and white cartoon illustrations to give moments for pausing, changing, visual sensations, and intervening emotions and contemplation.
Her closing artistic project was to create an illustration for the front cover of her new book. After the painting was completed, Ashley asked a variety of people how they felt looking at the front cover illustration, and everyone who was asked thoroughly enjoyed and appreciated the representation of the universality and diversity of populations living throughout planet earth who are all connected in one way or another with bullying issues ─ as bullies, victims, bystanders, up-standers… as people who are mentally, physically, emotionally, and/or spiritually upset and concerned with the ever-present, daily news of perpetrators and their targets throughout the globe.
And in October of 2018, National Bullying Prevention Month, Dr. Ashley’s newest book ─ Bullying and Prevention Strategies: Interview with Educator and Author Dr. Elana Ashley ─ appeared hot off the press. Ashley has been reaching out to people everywhere she goes. As she moves from person to person, from place to place, the following words ring out loud and clear: “Let’s work together to make America Bully Free!”
Would you be interested in getting your own copy of her new adult book targeting bullying issues? As long as supplies last, people who purchase an adult book can also receive a Free Copy of Big Bully Holly Howler in either the English or English/Spanish edition. You can reach the author directly by calling: 847.480.8998 or e-mailing: Info@DrElanaAshley.com
In the field of art, Dr. Ashley has two paintings and a two-page bio appearing in the book Living Artists of Today, Contemporary ART INTERNATIONAL, Vol. 11, published by Art & Beyond Studio, Inc., 2014.
Ashley's paintings After the Garden of Eden and The Floral Kingdom of Animals appear in the magazine Art & Beyond, Volume 3, Summer/Fall Issue, 2013.
Selected poems by Dr. Ashley appear in Overcoming: An Anthology by the writers of OCWW [Off-Campus Writers' Workshop], edited by Richard Davidson, past president and member of OCWW, and published by Radmar Publishing Group, 2014.
If there were more hours in a day, Elana would be completing other books which await her attention. She created a series of fifteen paintings of primarily animals to be used in a book for children ages one to four. Dr. Ashley needs to find time to complete her mythology series which includes original stories for kindergarten through high school students, as well as a cosmic adventure series including six chapters with colorful, cartoon illustrations for children ages 8 to 12. The author would like to find time to complete the works mentioned above, in addition to short stories for children [kindergarten ─ 3rd grade] she has written, some of which are accompanied by colorful illustrations. And for adults, Dr. Ashley has been writing and developing a combination biography/anthology of original poems and songs which are interwoven with her paintings and mixed media. Ashley's writings and artistic pieces are all original works which are products of a life-time journey.