Wednesday, September 23, 2015

iBooks Authoring in Schools

I just recently worked with a staff of teachers on Creating Classroom Content with iBooks Author.  Here is the digital handout that I created for the half day session:

Creating Classroom Content with iBooks Author digital handout 

And here are some more specific examples of my positive experiences with iBooks Author in education:
I am pretty proud of our class-authored community history book written by 3rd graders:
And also a class project dual purposed as a service project with 8th graders:
I also enjoyed using iBooks Author with my students to facilitate Literature Circles in 8th grade Reading class:
And iBooks Author was one of the formats for publishing and sharing our school digital magazine written by students:
Also, a year-end "digital scrapbook" project in the form of an ABC book in my 7th grade English class:
But my biggest success with iBooks Author as a teacher has been letting go and encouraging my students to become authors themselves.  Whether for a science project, historical interview/biography, digital portfolio, poetry journal, nonfiction or fiction writing, when students are empowered by the high caliber tools available and the possibility of a global audience in the iBooks Store, they rise to the experience.
OR-- just search the iBooks Store for ONeill Public School
A challenge for us is distribution of books that are NOT published to the iBooks Store.  To work around this we found success by adding content to a course to which all students can enroll and then download any books they need.  
This works very well for iPad, but being 1:1 school with MacBook Airs my ongoing plea is that books in an iTunes U course can be downloaded from a Mac (like video and pdf materials currently can).  iBooks on the Mac has tremendous value in education, too, and not every book is suited for public publishing in the iBooks Store.  Other than that, we LOVE that students and teachers have another rich option for producing and sharing media-rich educational content. iBooks Author rocks!