Ereaders in Education

Intel Will Push Into The Education Content Market With Interactive Textbooks

11 November 2013

From TechCrunch:

We had a tip about, and have now confirmed,Intel’s latest acquisition: Kno, the education startup that started life as a hardware business and later pivoted into software — specifically via apps that let students read interactive versions of digitized textbooks.

“I can confirm Intel has purchased Kno,” a spokesperson told us just now.

. . . .

Intel has published a . . . statement . . . on its site, which points to how Kno will fit into Intel’s efforts to build up its business in the education market — an effort it is making both in wider efforts in hardware and software.

. . . .

To date, Kno’s apps can be accessed via its iPad, Android and Windows 7 and Windows 8 apps, and the main idea behind Kno is that the books are not only digitised but also include additional features to help students and teachers assess their progress, share information with others and generally get more engaged in the content.

“They are the same books, only smarter,” the company notes on its site.

Link to the rest at TechCrunch

Google Unveils New Tablet

27 June 2012

Hi all,

Looks interesting.  Unfortunately I can only post the link, not the video:

http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/video/7443946-google-unveils-new-tablet-at-sf-io-conference/#.T-tmvMUIvME.email

–  Julia Barrett

For Reading and Learning, Kids Prefer E-Books to Print Books

11 January 2012

From Digital Book World:

Given the choice between reading e-books or print books, children prefer e-books, a new, exploratory field study shows. Children who read e-books also retain and comprehend just as much as when they read print books, the study also suggests.

A new “QuickStudy” – so named for its short duration and the small size of its sample group – from the Joan Ganz Cooney Center observed 24 families with children ranging in age from three-to-six reading both print and e-books in the Summer and Fall of 2011. Most of the children in the study preferred reading an e-book to a print book and comprehension between the two formats were the same.

“If we can encourage kids to engage in books through an iPad, that’s a win already,” said Carly Shuler, senior consultant for industry studies at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop is a New York based non-profit organization dedicated to understanding how children learn through digital media.

Enhanced e-books – those that have more bells and whistles than e-books, like interactive features and games – were also compared in the study with their regular e-book counterparts. Children recalled fewer of the details of the content of enhanced e-books versus the same e-book.

“Kids were more focused on tapping things and that took away from their comprehension as well as the interaction between the parent and the child,” said Shuler.

. . . .

About 7.4% of children’s books sold in the first three quarters of 2011 were digital (excluding young adult titles), according to Bowker, a company that tracks the book industry. That compares with 13.5% across all book publishing segments over the same period.

Adoption of digital has been slower for children’s books than it has for other kinds of books in part because of a technology lag, according to Kelly Gallagher, vice president of publishing services at Bowker, who is currently working on a report about the children’s book publishing industry.

“The growth rate appears to be slower and it flattened out a bit this year,” said Gallagher. “That is related to the technology not being as capable to fully give the book-like experience for a children’s product, as opposed to the flat narrative of adult trade fiction.”

Link to the rest at Digital Book World

State of Washington Launches Digital Textbook Repository

3 November 2011
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from eBook Newser:

[T]he Washington state legislature . . . set aside three quarters of a million dollars to create a new program which will reduce the amount that the state spends each year for college textbooks.

The first phase of that program launched today.The Open Course Library was created by the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges, and it acts as a central repository for digital textbooks and course materials for the college classes with the highest enrollments.

. . . .

Most (but not all) of the course materials are free, but the important detail here is that they all meet the standards set by the state of Washington. If a teacher adopts one of the CC licensed textbooks for a class then the students will be able to reduce their textbook costs considerably. But it’s not all peachy keen. Some of the materials in the OCL are still going to cost students money; luckily there’s an upper limit of $30.

Link to the rest at eBook Newser

E-readers – The Future of Public Education

16 February 2011
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Experiences of a literacy teacher with Kindles in class.

Excerpts:

Shortly after that I applied for several literacy grants at work, not even sure what materials I could purchase if I was even approved for the funds. I began searching various sources for literacy teaching aids and found that everything I could make available to my students was bordering on insulting and childish. My mind went back to the Kindle e-reader I once had.

If I had a Kindle for every student in my class, each one filled with high-interest reading material that addresses topics that speak to young adults, I could use the read-aloud feature on the Kindle so that the students could “read” books they cared about and enjoyed while the words were displayed for them on the screen. Fortunately, the grant sources I applied to agreed with me.

I now have a classroom set of ten Kindle readers, each filled with almost two hundred books. I have headphones for each one so that my students can choose any title in the machine and listen without disturbing their neighbors. At first I used the Kindles to fill in down time in class or to have them available for independent reading, but my mind raced with the possibilities for a teacher.

One of the greatest features of Kindle readers, and I assume this is true of other branded devices, is that each e-book purchase is licensed to up to six devices, so as a teacher with limited funds I am able to purchase a book one time and install it on six of the machines. If I want all ten devices to have the exact same titles, I simply purchase the title one additional time.

. . . .

One of the most useful applications of using e-readers in my classroom is the ability to purchase titles instantly. By keeping my grant funding installed in our school Amazon account through our facility’s credit card, I can literally step over to my desktop computer and purchase any Kindle title, which sends it instantly to each device using the Amazon Whispernet. I have often had students ask me if I had a specific book available and if I do not, I can purchase the title immediately for them. I am demonstrating to my students that their interest in reading is extremely important to me, so important to me that I will provide books they enjoy at the push of a button. It is amazing as an educator to have the power to provide my students with titles that they request. When a student requests a specific book I am able to say to him, “I don’t have that book, but wait…now I do. Look in your Kindle.”

Link to the rest at Good EReader

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