Ebook use in schools

The best ebook systems now transform books into a targeted intervention tool for teachers

The delivery of learning resources via digital means is on a consistent upward trend.  Although our use of ebooks in UK schools is still in its infancy, demand is growing:

  • Three quarters of students asked said they preferred reading on a tablet or an ereader[1].
  • Alice Phillips, Girls’ Schools Association President Elect and Head of St. Catherine’s, Bramley, asked delegates at the GSA’s February 2013 conference, “If your current textbooks were made available in PDFs at the same quality and same prices as their physical counterparts, who would switch tomorrow?”. 75% of the delegates raised their hands.
  • Teachers want to use content from trusted sources.

Today’s best ebook systems let you to do things you just can’t with physical books.

Early adopting schools are realising they can transform books into targeted intervention tools to raise attainment.

Specifically, they are finding they can:

  • Afford to rent a rich range of ebooks for the month they’re teaching each topic and theme
  • Easily allocate the right level of ebooks to each student’s reading level
  • Provide anywhere, anytime access to those ebooks, so the learning continues at home

 Examples include:
Boy’s Literacyaffordably rent a rich range of engaging levelled boys’ ebooks, such as Boffin Boy, delivered through exciting technology devices, to get boys reading.
Transition – students arrive in Year 7 with very different literacy levels: assign appropriate levelled reading for their ability without the peer stigma of coloured book stickers.
EAL – target appropriate level content to accelerate literacy and confidence of your English as an additional language students, both in class and at home.
Flipped learning – learn the content at home, discuss and debate it in class; all so much easier when teachers can simply allocate a range of ebooks that are accessible at home.
Motivating soarers – engage, challenge and stretch your gifted and talented students by putting books into the elibrary to encourage independent reading.
Project work – short-term rent ebooks for specific projects and theme-based learning in Primary and Key Stage 3 competency based curricula, e.g. Year 8 ‘Water’ project.

 “I would read more if I could read on a computer,”
Student, St Nicholas CE Primary School, Wantage

 What are the other benefits of ebooks for schools?

  • Always having a pristine copy – no graffiti, no missing pages.
  • Always having the most up-to-date book – keep pace with curriculum change.
  • Access all books through a single, internet-enabled device rather than carrying heavy bags.
  • Increased student engagement – help foster the love of reading, especially with those who are a little reluctant to pick up a book.

Where to start?

However, adopting ebooks can seem like a headache you don’t have time for. Which solution should you use? Where do you start?

When looking at an ebook system we suggest you consider:

  • Is it a better educational tool than paper books? Can you use the ebook system to target interventions to raise attainment? E.g. by easily pushing books out by pupil reading level, by being affordable enough to offer a breadth of ebooks for each topic, by allowing easy access outside school, and by not being tied to a particular device.
  • Upfront costs – does the platform require an upfront subscription? Will it be used? Will you get a good return on your investment? Look for platforms that don’t require a large investment, let you trial them for free and have a pay-as-you-use model so you’re confident you’re getting results from your spend.
  • Flexible licences – has the supplier considered the way books are used in schools – classroom textbooks, support project topic work, target short-term inventions, and in the library. Can you use the same platform for all types of use?
  • Management – can you easily manage users and devices? Being able to assign books to individuals and groups of students is essential to the right books being used at the right time.
  • Devices – does the platform work across multiple devices? Many schools will want students to access content from home; will it work with whatever device that parent has?

 “RM Books is really cool, I read for two hours a night!”
Student, Coombe Dean School, Plymouth.

 Is there such a platform out there?

RM Books is the first ebook solution that has been specifically designed for schools. It transforms books into targeted intervention tools for teachers to use to raise attainment with different ability groups. It’s free to use and provides anywhere, anytime access to the latest etextbooks and ebook novels from any device with an internet connection, with offline reading options for windows, Mac, iOS and Android.

Create your free RM Books account today and begin your ebook revolution.
Register: www.rmbookshelf.com

[1] Source: Survey of students from RM Books ebook system’s early adopter schools, February 2013

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One Response to Ebook use in schools

  1. Pingback: Ebook use in schools — RM Education Blog

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