by Tim Lamden
Saturday, February 23, 2013
Next month, the Jewish Museum in Camden Town will be giving schoolchildren the chance to try out a new iPad app exploring the historic diary of Anne Frank. Ahead of the special workshop, two schoolchildren from the west of Haringey tested out the app for the Ham&High to give us their thoughts on the new learning tool.
Created by Penguin’s Viking imprint and digital producers Beyond The Story to mark Holocaust Memorial Day.
The app brings to life The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank in a digital form for a new generation of readers.
It offers the full, definitive text, as well as 21 video clips, 40 audio clips and audio extracts read by actress Helena Bonham Carter.
The app is available from the Apple App Store and Nook Store for £6.99.
After exploring the new app, Gil Krikler, 11, of Priory Road, Hornsey, was not short of things to write.
“The app is cleverly set out like a table or desk so that when you go into it you are looking at what is supposed to be Anne Frank’s desk and on it is a diary and then other icons, including the story trails and the timeline.
“The whole app is a bit like being in a museum about Anne Frank because as well as being able to read the diary you can click on photos, videos and facts as you read each page.
“There are at least five different links per page so there is a lot to look at. You can click on hyperlinks which bring up extra facts or a map showing you where the different places Anne talks about are.
“It is all very interesting but the downside for me was how the app worked.
“We downloaded it onto an iPad 4 and it didn’t seem to fit the screen properly.
“Some of the options were cut off so I couldn’t see them or touch them to bring up the interactive bits.
“It’s also not very touch sensitive. I had to touch the icons several times to get them to respond which was frustrating.
“If, like me, you haven’t read the diary, then the timeline and story trails give you a really good flavour of Anne Frank’s story. But I think you would want to read the diary as well to get the details and the full picture.”
Anya Golend Pratt, 11, of Osier Crescent, Muswell Hill, was equally impressed by the app.
“I have read Anne Frank’s diary before but the app really made her story come alive because it has extra information and is very interactive.
“All the photos and videos make it much more vivid and really help you imagine what she was like and how she must have felt.
“There are story trails which provide the main details in the diary and when you click on them it reveals the stories within the story.
“So, for example, there is a photo from her 10th birthday party in Amsterdam and then you can click on a link which tells you about what the girls were wearing and how they watched a film.
“Then it tells you that this was a really special treat because for the last 18 months Jews had not been allowed to go the public cinema. “There is another link which shows an interview with a woman who was one of Anne’s friends. It’s amazing to see a video of someone who knew her well.
“The app is a little confusing to use at first. When I was in the diary, I couldn’t work out how to get back to the main menu.
“I enjoyed the app a lot and thought it was really interesting. It would definitely make me want to read the diary if I hadn’t already.”
- The Diary of Anne Frank workshop, for ages 12 and above, takes place at the Jewish Museum, in Albert Street, Camden Town, on March 10, between 3.30pm and 5pm. It has been organised with the Jewish Community Centre for London as part of the Little Bookniks event marking Jewish Book Week. Go to www.jewishmuseum.org.uk for tickets or more information.