The BISS Library-Media Center has purchased 6 Kindle touch reading devices that offer 3G and wireless access to ebooks. We are implementing the e-reader program to provide our students the opportunity to read on a device that they otherwise might not be able to access. We are hoping that we can meet the needs of all students by offering an alternative reading experience. This project will also provide an opportunity to interact with information technologies, and will allow the media center to increase access to high-demand titles on the spot.
After reviewing the pros and cons of this pilot Kindle project, Dr. Zilber, our Head of School, agreed that the potential benefits outweighed any drawbacks, and I am thankful for her support in this endeavor. I am truly excited to hear our students’ feedback on their experiences with ereading and the Kindles. Their input will be used to guide future steps in our efforts to provide reading materials both in print format as well as digital.
Intense data has been collected within the past couple of months in order to explore how the use of an e-reader affects reading behaviors, attitudes and comprehension versus the use of traditional books. In addition, and to further explore this device’s usage among students; we have designed a mixed-method, teacher-action research focusing on the difference between independent variables: the mediums being read (print and non-print).
A total of 12 fourth-graders from Shannon’s class (ages 9-10-years-old) have made up the participants of the study. All participants are from the same fourth-grade classroom. Of the twelve participants, six are boys and six are girls. The participants in the study represent a wide range of reading abilities and different ethnic backgrounds.
In order to carry out this experiment, a treatment group and a control group have been defined. The control group is being used as a baseline measure. The members of the control group will be very similar to the members of the treatment group with the exception that they will not have access to the e-readers.
As the Library-Media Center collects data and student permissions to share their insights and experiences of reading on the Kindle, I will share that data with you in this space. We will also collect data on students’ reading attitudes, behavior and comprehension with ereaders vs. paper books, and on the types of books students are requesting and reading.