Monday, September 3, 2018

Students Authoring Books with Pages

Every year on September 8, International Literacy Day is celebrated. In conjunction with this year's celebration, AppleEDU has launched a #PagesBookChallenge. The challenge is simple. Create a digital book with your students in Apple's Pages app (free creation app for Mac or iPad). Then, simply tweet a short synopsis of the book along with its cover and tag #PagesBookChallenge.

To encourage all educators to participate here a series of short tips and recommendations for creating digital books with Pages.

1. Begin a new Pages project using the Books templates.

Tip: Use Portrait templates for primarily text-based books (so that the reader can resize the text and the pages will adjust accordingly) and Landscape for fixed layout books (where you control the exact design and layout of the pages and the reader cannot adjust).

2. Author and Edit as you normally would in the Pages app. 

The beauty of the iWork suite, in my opinion, is its simplicity and consistency across apps. Unleash your creativity!

3. Add narration with authentic audio

On Mac: Create a Quicktime Audio Recording and drag icon next to filename onto your Pages document.
On iPad: Tap the +, choose the Media tab, and Record Audio, then add to page.

4. Export as ePub for Publishing and Sharing.

Title your book and name the author. Set your options for book cover: (None, from first page, or upload your own).
There you have it! Anyone can create a book with Pages. 

 Student books authored in Pages by Mrs. Troester's English 8 class, Spring 2018. (Science "Explainer" books for younger learners)

As educators the possibilities are endless when authoring books with Pages. To help learners experience authentic authoring, encourage them to work through all stages of the writing process. Here is a 60 second reminder of how to do so within the Apple ecosystem.

Finally, teachers can use Pages templates to help students focus more on the content of their books, and less on the the design of the pages. Whether for professional learning experiences, class books where every student authors a piece, or even shorter individual writing projects, simply create a Pages book as a starting template. Share the Pages document as a starting point and allow the learners to customize the content. Be sure to take advantage of the following features:

Media placeholders

Add image gallery placeholders from the Media button. This is a preset placeholder for the author to add an entire gallery of images.

Add text boxes and utilize Paragraph Styles

Text boxes are automatically ready as placeholders. Simply change the paragraph style and/or formatting.

Build your own photo/video placeholder

Add an image (or screenshot). Select the image and choose:
On Mac: Format > Advanced > Define as Media Placeholder

Add pages as desired and distribute to all your budding authors.  

I cannot WAIT to see what creative ideas you and your students have when creating books in Pages!

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