has been launched in Alaska.
Readers can also explore videos and sound effects, access additional information from touch zones and drop down captions, record themselves reading the story, practice letter and word recognition, and participate in the included teacher extension activities. “A classroom might be comprised of students with 3 – 5 different levels of reading,” Dr. Whicker said.
What’s Up with Whales? represents a new category of digital books that can greatly simplify the work of teachers to meet individual student needs by providing the same content for different levels of readers in their classrooms.” English and Spanish are the initial focus, reflecting the rapid growth in Hispanic speaking households in the USA, and the urgent need to bring bilingual readers to grade level in English. “We’re also ready to work with districts, schools, and organizations who want to substitute their own indigenous languages in the book to help students connect with the right level of reading challenge in their own language,” said Dr. Whicker.
The book’s technology has been developed by New Zealand based media production company Kiwa Digital Ltd, in collaboration with Alaska based Newtek Education Systems Ltd, and the Association of Alaska School Boards. “Technology is transforming the way teaching and learning is experienced,” said Steven Renata Global Business Development Director for Kiwa Digital. “With the launch of this new technology, educators have an exciting new tool available to support literacy development, especially for second language readers and mixed ability groups.”
What’s Up With Whales? is available on the Apple App Store at an introductory price of $4.99 (regularly $9.99), with additional education discount pricing available to schools through the Apple Volume Purchase Program (VPP). Visit https://itunes.apple.com/app/whats-up-withwhales/id1012655689?ls=1&mt=8
Association of Alaska School Boards (AASB)
AASB represents Alaska’s 53 school districts and assists school boards in providing quality public education focused on student achievement. Since 2005, the Consortium for Digital Learning (CDL), an initiative of AASB, has helped launch over a hundred 1-to-1 laptop and tablet projects in 28 school districts across Alaska. CDL provides services to support digital teaching and learning in today’s connected schools.
Shelley Gill’s natural history and adventure books have sold more than a million copies worldwide. Her first book, Kiana's Iditarod, was about her own experience as one of the first women to finish the 1,100 mile dog sled race to Nome. She works as a whale researcher in Prince William Sound and lives in Homer, Alaska, a small fishing town on the tip of the Kenai Peninsula.
KIWA is the world’s leading production house for experiential digital books. We partner with publishers and other content owners, using our patented technology to bring content to life in revolutionary new digital formats that deepen engagement and understanding. KIWA has recently appointed Alaska based Newtek Education Systems Ltd to introduce its products and services to Alaska and other US states.