An English lesson with iPads and RNIB Bookshare
Eight difference reading formats
Mary-Ellen is one of the English teachers at Priestley Smith School who is particularly keen on the opportunities that RNIB Bookshare gives her learners. She explained to us that in a class of eight children, she will have to provide resources in eight different reading formats, due to their various sight conditions. This can make it problematic to choose a book title that they can all read. On discovering how on RNIB Bookshare she could download a title all of her class could use she said,
“I could immediately download a text that day and I nearly danced! It was just really good to be able to do that. I really liked the ease of it…”
As long as she is able to comply with the permissions of RNIB Bookshare under the Copyright and Rights in Performances (Disability) Regulations 2014, Mary Ellen is able to download from a selection of many thousands of titles. Titles are downloaded in an electronic format to be used on a device (tablet, computer, access technology) or modified and used as a hard copy (Braille, Large print etc)
Mary Ellen went on to talk about being able to give her learners a love of reading. She felt strongly that to love reading, you need to be able to choose your own books, which can be challenging for print disabled learners in school.
“If you are not interested or excited, you are not really going to want to read. Once you give that choice to a child, they are going to be a lot more interested, and their growth in being able to recognise words, to learn vocabulary, it happens when they don’t even realise it when they are lost in a book”
Mary-Ellen is now using RNIB Bookshare in her classes. Her learners have their own accounts and can all read a choice of books together, in the format that meets their needs. They can also read in their own time, choosing their own books.