Student Authors Release He Huffed and He Puffed But … A Tale of A Wolf with Asthma

Butler student authors from four colleges—Business, Education, Pharmacy and Health Sciences, and Jordan College of the Arts—have written, illustrated, and published a children’s book on asthma.

He Huffed and He Puffed But … A Tale of a Wolf with Asthma (Mascot Books) is also available in print in the Butler Bookstore and online at https://www.formstack.com/forms/butler-asthma_book. Amazon.com sells an electronic version.

The book features  Tim BurWulf, a mischievous wolf pup who’s hungry for bacon but puzzled that he’s running out of breath and can’t blow down the three little pigs’ houses.

Aimed at kids ages 5–11 who have asthma, the story follows Tim as he visits a doctor and a pharmacist, who help him—and readers—learn how to recognize and control asthma symptoms.

Authors include pharmacy majors Kelsey Bauman ’13 and Megan Granger ’13, early middle childhood education majors Jennifer Goshert ’13 and Karly Keiper ’13, marketing majors Maggie Anderson ’13 and Alex Davis ’13, and Art + Design majors Taylor Cox ’15 and Morgan McFarland ’14.

They began work a year ago, dividing into two teams that developed separate storyboards over summer. In fall, they selected and refined the best elements of both storyboards into the book.

Several of the authors balanced writing with completing off-campus practicum experiences required for their degrees—internships, student-teaching, and advanced pharmacy professional rotations. Squeezed to find time for face-to-face meetings, they often collaborated in virtual spaces such as Dropbox, Google Plus Hangout, and a closed Facebook page. Davis even contributed digitally while studying this semester in South America.

He Huffed is the second children’s book produced across colleges, originating out of the College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences (COPHS) RX607-608 Senior Projects course. A different team of pharmacy, education, and art students published Pharmacy and Me, last April; it is available in hardcopy at the Butler bookstore.

For the latest book, Anderson and Davis were recruited from the College of Business to handle fundraising and marketing strategies. They developed a Kickstarter campaign that exceeded the financial goal of $2,000 in 30 days.

 Assistant Professor of Pharmacy Erin Albert, an adviser on both books, said Davis and Anderson using their business know-how to organize work and production goals for the author team.

“Both Maggie and Alex did a great job showing the group how to manage our time well with this project,” said Cox. “They truly kept the book on track.”

Cox and McFarland created the book’s illustrations, which resemble children’s line drawings and collage, mixed with watercolor.

“We wanted the pictures to appear simple and childlike, to connect with all ages that would be reading this book,” said McFarland, who drew the original images by hand.

Cox redrew the pictures in Adobe Illustrator and added colors in Photoshop.

The drawings of the animal characters and backdrops are clearly fun for the eye. But the pictures of inhalers and a peak flow meter—Tim’s “secret weapons” for controlling asthma—had to be drawn realistically enough that young readers could understand how to use the equipment effectively. Cox said translating photos of actual equipment into cartoon form was tricky.

“The pharmacy students were more than happy to verify that I finished a drawing correctly and to offer advice,” she said.

Pharmacy major Bauman said her big take-away from the project was the understanding that she and her co-authors “communicate differently based on our backgrounds.”

“Each of us had to effectively ‘teach’ our specialty area to the others to ensure we were successfully working towards our goal,” she said.

COPHS professor Julie Koehler helped the student authors understand asthma therapeutically.

Education majors Goshert and Keiper made sure that information was conveyed in age-appropriate language for the child readers without losing the fun of the story. That included giving Tim a “sassy” attitude,” Albert said.

“I like it. He’s a bit of rebel,” she said.

Faculty advisors for the project included Angela Lupton, College of Education; Gautam Rao, Jordan College of the Arts; and Kate King and Stephanie Fern Haber, College of Business, along with Albert and Koehler.

Planning has started for subsequent publications from future cross-college interprofessional book projects.

“The students learn so much by teaching their teammates about their professions and areas of expertise,” said Albert. “The publications have been too valuable as a hands-on, project-based learning experience to not only continue, but evolve this program in the future.”

 Media contact: Mary Ellen Stephenson
(317) 940-6944
mestephe@butler.edu

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