Newsday: Kellenberg High School creates electronic textbooks for iPad use

Dec 01 2014

Excerpts from the article by Newsday’s Bart Jones:

A growing number of schools are issuing iPads to students, but Kellenberg Memorial High School in Uniondale has taken it a step further. Teachers have created their own electronic textbooks for use on the tablets.

For the first time, the Catholic college prep school in Uniondale distributed iPads in September to its 600 freshmen.

“It’s been a positive step. I think the level of engagement is high,” said Ken Frank, an English and computer teacher who was one of the main architects of the switch.

Education experts say the move is unusual.


No Common Core

“We’re a classical curriculum that definitely works,” [Brother Kenneth Hoagland, S.M.] said. “We don’t see any reason to change our curriculum just because the state” is doing so.

Since January, teachers have worked on devising their own digital texts, he said. For some subjects, the transition wasn’t difficult. In math, for example, many teachers had been posting an increasing amount of material on the Internet, where students would access it.

[Mr. Kenneth] Frank said the switch to digital texts makes it easier to revise lessons and offer special features, such as “pull-up” links where students can, for instance, hear an audio version of the Greek classic “Antigone” by Sophocles. Another link allows students to hear Robert Frost reciting some of his own poetry.



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