Monday, March 17, 2014

Student Centered Authoring: iBooks Author

Education is rapidly transforming to keep up with the world today. The world in which our students are entering is one filled with uncertainty. We are preparing students for jobs that don’t even exist yet and in many cases we are preparing them for several different careers within their lifetime. It is up to teachers and schools to change their environments to be more conducive to this reality. Students will need to be creators, critical thinkers, collaborators, and effective researchers. It is our job to find the resources and tools to make this mission a reality. I believe that iBooks Author is the kind of tool to do this.

Gone are the days when teachers pass out textbooks and ask the students to find the answers within its pages. Now, teachers are called upon to be guides in the classroom and allow students to seek the answers themselves and then determine whether their sources were accurate. Their is more media and sources than ever before. With the use of iBooks Author, teachers and students are able to create custom textbooks to both learn and teach what they are researching.

With iBooks Author, students and teachers can create interactive books with video, essays, presentations, interactive maps, quizzes, audio clips and more. Teachers can design books customized to their specific classroom which dig far deeper and are much more engaging than in books from the past. The Common Core asks us to teach students to work with multiple sources. Using iBooks Author, we can do this and more!

Can you imagine the power of students publishing their own novel? How about students making books highlighting local history? Wouldn’t it be awesome if our students could publish a book on how we can improve water storage to help in the California Drought? These are just a few of the possibilities with iBooks Author. And the great thing is, even if you aren’t in a one to one setting, you can still create an interactive book for student learning.

You can be very basic and just write an iBook consisting of text. But you can also create more advanced books using and other sites to add YouTube, Google Maps, and more. I believe that this is the future of our classrooms. iTunes U and iBooks are tools that can help our students go big and go pro! Leading is Teaching.

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