Technology & Interactivity

Current Project

Persian Icon

I am experimenting with how to layer interactive elements on top of a static background image. My unit (and inspiration): Folk & Fairy Tales. I’ve always been partial to fairy tales. From what I’ve seen on the Internet, most of the material and resources are very cartoonish or pixelated. I grew up with Gustav Tenggren’s exquisitely illustrated version of the Arabian Nights and a volume of a family friends’ retelling of many classic fairy tales from around the world with very elegant illustrations. There are scores of editions of fairy tales with beautifully crafted artwork. My own preference is for the art nouveau style popular at the turn of the 19th century: Arthur Rackham, Edmund Dulac, Walter Crane and Anne Anderson to name a few. I suppose it’s because I feel they capture the time and magical quality better than more modern interpretations. I want to bring that quality and sophistication to the graphics as well as the element of interactive surprise to heighten the creativity and imagination commonly found in the genre, and, in which children of all ages find such delight!





Among the more charming and high quality resources I did find: 


I started with a basic image and found it rather easy to reproduce, enliven and animate in Power Point by using animated gifs. You can download a test version to give you an idea of what I have in mind. The interactive function will not work unless you ‘enable editing.’ Then click on ‘Slide Show’ and play around with the Persian-inspired triggers/icons to prompt the interactive components. Ultimately, I suppose, my goal would be to have a website, but that would probably entail considerable copyright infringement issues and some serious coding, well beyond my meager capabilities. For the time being, I plan on sharing them with my students.

Click below to download Power Point test:

interactive aladdin-basic test

An example of a basic static image: (I like the idea of going from black & white to triggering color features).



to which I juxtaposed some unexpected animated gifs, triggered by a Persian-inspired icon:

Persian Icon


If you are a primary, or even middle school, educator, you will recognize the animation from ‘Diary of a Wimpy Kid’, a currently, greatly-beloved and irreverent (the source, no doubt, for its’ great appeal among resistant readers) book.

I understand there is a hotspot map available on WordPress as a plug-in. I will experiment with that as well, but I think it is like the ThingLink website, which is great for projects and presentations which don’t require the seamlessness I am looking for. You can create interactive icons which bring up tags, to which you can attach images , videos, and other media.  They have a free tier for educators and the public. At some point I might pay their nominal fee for the purpose of experimenting.

Happy Creating!