Academic journal article Childhood Education

Aesopolis

Academic journal article Childhood Education

Aesopolis

Article excerpt

Aesopolis CD-ROM offers teachers and students an entertaining look at Aesop's fables. The setting is a museum displaying classic paintings of Aesopic fables. Students can explore the museum by clicking on the credits, to find out more about the paintings, or clicking on the pictures, to read and hear the fable itself. The amusing narrator, Uncle Bits, comes complete with interchangeable costumes, disguises and artistic portraits.

Once students choose to read and hear the fable, other choices are offered. They can see an older Jacob version of the fable, look up a word in the dictionary, explore the museum further, see a list of fables or move to the next fable. Sound can be controlled from within the program.

Comparisons of older and newer fable versions dramatically illustrate how our language has lost some of its color. The Jacob versions may be more appealing because they sound more like the real thing. Clicking on notes allows students to research the history and development of the fable and its different versions. The panel illustration is also credited in the notes. For example, The Wolf and the Crane panel is an illustration by Walter Crane from The Baby's Own Aesop (1887).

Users travel through the museum in much the same way as in arcade and adventure software games. Aesopolis will, however, disappoint students who prefer an elaborate network of rooms and adventure. …

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