Alutiiq Museum Turns Children’s Book Into Interactive Tale

The cover of "Yaaki" by Hanna Sholl. Photo courtesy of the Alutiiq Museum
The cover of “Yaaki” by Hanna Sholl. Photo courtesy of the Alutiiq Museum

Kayla Desroches/KMXT

Kodiak is bringing Alutiiq children’s books into the electronic sphere.

The Alutiiq Museum paired up with partners both here and abroad to turn the books into apps for the iPhone and other Apple devices.

Molly Odell, project manager at the Alutiiq Museum, says she’s been working on the Q-books for the last few months.

“The Native Village of Afognak provided the Alutiiq Museum with PDF images of the illustrations, and then of course the text, and we sent all that to a publishing company in New Zealand who produces these electronic books, and they use special techniques to make the illustrations look good in an electronic format, and then we also sent them the audio recordings of someone reading the book.”

Which means that children and students of the Alutiiq language can both see and hear the narration through the app.

Odell says one of the books they recently made available is “Yaaki”, a story about a girl and her dog written by Susan Malutin and illustrated by Hanna Sholl.

It’s part of a series of books to be appified, two of which are already available, and Odell says the Native Village of Afognak was involved in the children’s books prior to turning them into interactive apps.

“They originally had a project for these books to be produced, so some of the books were already paper books including ‘Yaaki,’ and the Native Village of Afognak had a project before the Alutiiq Museum was involved to hire writers and artists to write the content and illustrations for these books and then the Native Village of Afognak had them printed.”

Odell says the “Yaaki” app is available through the iTunes store and is compatible with the iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch.

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