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Student Created Books
Over the years, my students have published a lot of books. Collectively, they have over 150,000 downloads in Apple Books. My favorite part of student created books is the process. While the end product is always something beyond my expectations, watching my students problem solve, revise and edit, help each other, and look for ways for each class member to be involved is truly the best part.
Our most recent publication, The Heart, was put together for the purpose of educating students in Darfur, Africa. We obtained 12 iPads and loaded them up with the book and other teaching materials to donate. The iPads and supplies were delivered to the school in Darfur this past fall and we received images and videos of the students using the book in class.
To have a 150 students working towards publishing ONE book seems like a huge undertaking, but with a little organization, it works great. I selected 1-2 editors per class period. These students were in charge of picking the best of the best from the work submitted by their classmates. Sometimes they would find things they wanted to use, but there was an error or something not quite right. They would go to the student creator in class and ask them to make adjustments. They looked for holes in the book and would ask certain students to write a paragraph or sketch a drawing, etc. It was truly student run. My only job was to check for scientific accuracy and formatting.
Giving kids a platform to share their learning in this way helps them see that school can be so much more than worksheets, tests, and grades. They learned, had fun, contributed to the education of others, and are now published authors.
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