About Once Upon a Potty


Once Upon a Potty was a book written and illustrated by Alona Frankel for her son Michael. Friends all wanted copies, a local publisher printed it, took it to a book fair, and the rest is publishing history: after BOY and GIRL versions first appeared in the late-70's, Once Upon a Potty titles became best-sellers in the U.S., Holland, Israel & Japan; the hardcover books and animated VHS videos have sold over 4,000,000 copies since 1990 in the United States alone!

These classic books were listed as No. 1 (BOY) and No. 3 (GIRL) in Publisher Weekly 's all-time best-selling Hardcover Childcare charts. A grass-roots audience of millions returns again and again to Once Upon a Potty books & videos for natural, unexploited fun and effectiveness; there are jazz audiocassettes with mini-book paks and anatomically-correct dolls, Joshua and Prudence, with their own plastic mini-potty.

In recent years, publishing licensee HarperCollins has redesigned Once Upon a Potty and ten of Alona's other Joshua & Prudence book titles, introducing them to many new fans in the U.S. & Canada. VHS licensee Barron's Educational has recently released DVD versions of the two Once Upon a Potty titles (for HIM and HER)to great commercial success. And the new, 1-piece, saddle-shaped, full-size potties are a quiet revolution in themselves: denying the big guys' "let's make it complicated" norm, they opt instead for retro European elegance - as seen in the best-selling videos - for the largest, most comfortable sitting area yet easy cleaning; a built-in splashguard; a portable, attractive "My First Furniture" that is magically effective.

7 or 8 out of any 10 U.S. caregivers will recognize Joshua , Prudence , or Once Upon a Potty ! An amazing level of familiarity.. Equally appreciated by children of many ages, as well as recognized by Parent Polls from Kimberly-Clark and other giants, Once Upon a Potty 's appeal is truly evergreen and non-seasonal; it has a unique naturalness all its own.


  • Featured at international book fairs in the U.S., Italy, Israel, Egypt & Japan.
  • Selected for the Honor List of The International Board on Books for Young People, presented by The Hans Christian Andersen Award.
  • Lectures often - including the National U.S. International Conference on Children's Literature - and is invited to many television and radio programs.
  • Believes that "the only differences between children and adults are life experience and the child's dependency on an adult"; respects a child's sense of judgment, with her books reflecting liberal views, and aversion to indoctrination and violence.

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