Saturday, January 26, 2013

Digital Books?

Are you an expert with regard to digital books?  What advice do you have for me?

My students are starting to choose digital books more often.  They enjoy choosing a story and banding together to listen to it. I see them sprawled out on their bean bags listening to stories together laughing and discussing the story.

Our school has some access to digital stories, but not enough to run a book group or foster a just right book selection for a student who wants to read a book in school and at home too.  What do you suggest?

My initial thoughts are that our movement toward digital books should include the following:
  • web based books that can be accessed via multiple tools in school, at home and anywhere that there is Internet access.
  • multiple copies of multiple books for book groups and book shares.
  • books that have access to image, audio, Internet search, text adaptation and dictionary tools.
  • web devices that are easy to hold, carry, and share with others.
  • enough devices so that we can run book groups, let everyone who wants one use a digital book and share class books as well.
My questions include:
  • What's the best web-based device to use for digital books?  What will have the longest life, ease of use and hardiness factor as I'm at elementary school?
  • What's the most cost efficient device?
  • What happens when students listen and read along rather than read books on their own?  What does the research say?
Thanks for sending me your links and thoughts with regard to this quest.  I realize that digital books are making their way to homes and schools at a rapid pace--I want my students to be up to date with this medium, and use it in profitable ways to develop their reading skills.