The other day, I was reading my April edition of Reading Teacher (yes…I know it’s November…I’m a little behind!!) and I came across an article by Bridget Dalton. The article is called “DIY E-Books,” and it describes a free website called UDL Book Builder. The website, explains Dalton, can be used to find free e-books to read, as well as create your own. I was totally intrigued and decided to sign up for an account! And wow am I glad I did!
I used to teach in a Kindergarten classroom where every student could use (and even take home) an iPad. I had thought about making e-books for them but never really got around to it. If only I’d known about this site!!
When you log in, this is what you see. I first decided to click on “Model Books.” The purpose of this feature is to see good examples of books that people have written, and get tips for writing your own books. You can search with keywords, or by grade level, content area, genre, or language.
There are also “Public Library Books” that you can search through.
Here is an example from a very simple page from a social story that teaches kids how to deal with winning and losing at games:
At the bottom of the page, there are “coaches” that you / the child can click on. The coaches (“Miss Shelley,” “Bot,” and “Molly,” in this case) can ask questions about the text.
Within the text, you can have the words read aloud and highlight specific words/phrases.
After I looked at the model books, I started playing around with the book maker. It seemed pretty simple and easy to use, and you can create your own “coaches” to appear at the bottom of the pages. The coaches can ask the child questions as he/she reads.
I was really impressed. If I’d had this when I taught Kindergarten, I would have made books for each alphabet letter and some math concepts (like shapes), and I would have made a book for each science/social studies unit. The design of the site is simple, nothing fancy, but I think it’s a great resource for finding e-books and for making your own.
Check it out here and let me know what you think!!