iBooks Author

iBooks Author

Grade 6, John G. Althouse, Toronto District School Board

Outstanding Teacher-Librarian Jill Kelsall decided that she wanted to have her grade 6 students create digital books as an end project to their research & inquiry projects on Canadian immigration. She invited me to come and work with her students and I had the amazing opportunity teach two of her grade 6 classes how to use iBooks Author.

Mind’s On: Thinking About Interactive Books

We wanted the students to understand the difference between a traditional paper text and an interactive eBook, such as those we could create with iBooks Author. We examined several iBooks created by students such as The Life of an Eanes Pioneer Child, Creatures, Plants and More!, and Technology, Inquiry and the Role of New Learners.

We examined how these books used video, images, links, widgets and photo galleries to engage the audience and allow them to interact with the content of the books.

The students then brainstormed how iBooks Author can change the way they gather and share their information.

Action: Learning How to Use iBooks Author

We had about 1.5 hours to learn how to use iBooks Author. We gave the students a quick overview of the features and then we began to play and build. The students had all the basics mastered within this short period of time.

Research & Inquiry

Students returned to their Canadian Immigration research considering how they were going to take the information they had gathered and researched, and add interactivity to this work. Student returned to collect more images, videos, and plan ways of incorporating the widgets such as quizzes, popovers and interactive images. They also worked to make sure they had carefully considered copyright and were able to properly cite all their resources.

Consolidation: Publishing their iBook

Students worked for many hours to write, edit and finally publish their iBook on Canadian Immigration to iBooks (although not in the public store).

Here are just a few of the highlights of the book.


Jill Kelsall will tell her story of this project at the Ontario Library Association Super Conference 2015 on January 30.