Dallas, Texas – Schoolchildren, teachers, maintenance workers and parents themselves increasingly are learning from the type of multi-touch interactive books for iPad and iPad mini that are being produced by a Dallas publisher, and in some areas are exploring ways to generate content where learners must demonstrate topic mastery before advancing to the next.
Claxton Creative, LLC, the leading publisher in Dallas of the new “books” Steve Jobs was developing before his death last year, Thursday released “What Apple Isn’t Saying About Books For iPad” as a way to educate the public about the emerging technology that was designed to revolutionize the teaching and learning processes.
“Up to the end, Steve Jobs was working on this new form of a ‘book’ that now is revolutionizing the educational process around the world,” said Publisher and Author, Donald Claxton, who also served as the communications director for Dallas schools from 2001-2006. “The iPad mini is being marketed to increase the rate of adoption of iOS tablets in schools. Yet we are finding many parents still are unaware of how the learning process is changing for their kids and they are going to be amazed when the find out.”
In August, this North Texas company, along with Dr. Mark Van Stone of Southwestern College in San Diego, released “2012: Science and Prophecy of the Ancient Maya,” which now is available on the iBookstore and being prepared for an upcoming course on iTunes U to be taken worldwide by students of all ages.
“When was the last time you read a book that included two hours of video from 15 Maya scholars and had 3D animations of Maya artifacts that are 1,200 years old? We made this new ‘book’ in Dallas and it’s now on sale in 50 countries, including the entire South American continent. That’s never been possible before 2012 and something not even the ancient Maya could have predicted. But like much of what has been lost about the ancient Maya, many are not yet aware of what can be done on these books for iPad.”
Claxton said his company is negotiating with industry leaders about production of new materials as well as talking to major universities and school districts about how to escalate the rapid adoption of these new books. He also said tremendous opportunities exist in aircraft and industrial maintenance as well as corporate training.
“If you’re on a ladder looking at a jet engine that needs repair, which would you rather use as a guide, a 3-inch binder or an iPad mini strapped to your arm that weighs a little more than a half-pound? With these books, a technician can watch videos and study interactive photographs and drawings of what the working part is supposed to look like and follow the sequential steps in how to fix it,” Claxton said.
Claxton said books for the iPad have moved beyond the promotional and theoretical stage. School districts around the country are buying the units in rapidly increasing numbers.
For instance, a Nov. 5, 2012 issue from Time magazine cited examples of the New York City Public School system ordering more than 2,000 iPads for $1.3 million, the Virginia Department of Education spending $150,000 for an iPad initiative in 11 schools, and Chicago public schools spending $450,000 for 23 district-funded iPad grants.
“When Apple made the iPad mini announcement in October the pundits said it was to combat the rise in the Kindle Fire because of its cost,” Claxton said. “The real story is that a school superintendent with $1 million to spend pre-iPad mini could buy 2,000 units. With the iPad mini being $179 cheaper, they can now buy 3,000 units for the same amount of money. An added bonus is that kids’ fingers work very well on the smaller units.”
Books for the iPad and iPad mini include 3D animations, videos, multi-touch interactive images, puzzles, in-chapter quizzes, study guide notecards and now, with the release of the iBooks 3 app – social media capabilities that mean a student can ask a peer, teacher, parent or even the author themselves for assistance if they come across a section in a book they don’t understand.
“We want parents, teachers, administrators and corporate managers to see how this new technology can make a dramatic difference in how their children learn for the rest of their lives,” Claxton said. “What Apple Isn’t Saying About Books For iPad is offered for free downloading off our site to help educate why these books are so different from anything else they’ve ever seen.”
The book released Thursday includes 10 videos, a spooky 3D animation of the Maya Rio Azul Mask, a multi-touch image that demonstrates the new social media functions in the iBooks 3 app, an interactive map that shows the developmental patterns of ancient Mesoamerican cultures, and even a digital sliding puzzle of the book’s cover.
“We are in the middle of something huge for education, training and the spread of knowledge around the world. This isn’t a gold rush; it’s a gold landslide and few seem to realize it is even happening,” Claxton said.
Claxton said his company is putting the final touches on a children’s book for the iPad entitled, There’s A Zombie In My Treehouse, by authors Ken Plume and John Robinson of Atlanta. The book, which previously has been featured in WIRED, has 16 different readers tell the story, including some famous movie personalities, like Peter Serafinowicz, best known for his voice as the Sith Lord Darth Maul in “Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace.”
Over the next 10 days, Claxton Creative will feature a particular aspect of the book for the benefit of those who still do not own an iPad. Each day, a new topic will be presented, complete with a short video also featuring a characteristic of these new books available only on the iPad and iPad mini.
Claxton Creative is a Dallas-based full-service public relations firm focused on the development of interactive, multi-touch publications for mobile devices worldwide. The company was founded by former Dallas ISD communications director, Donald J. Claxton and is supported with the assistance of Fort Worth Author Ron Rose, Dallas Author Allen Manning, Birmingham, AL editor Larisa Lovelady, Ally Stephenson of Huntsville, AL, and others. Copyright (C) 2012 Claxton Creative, LLC. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other trademarks and trade names are the property of their respective owners.