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Digital How-To books

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Digital How-To books

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This is a goal directed instructional lesson aimed to introduce 2nd grade students creating audio and visual recording of a pre-written how-to book. This lesson can be adjusted and used by different grade levels.
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Material Type: Assignment
Technical Format: Website
Date Added to MERLOT: March 24, 2013
Date Modified in MERLOT: April 28, 2013
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Submitter: Atoya Martin
Keywords: technology writing, collaboration, writing, audio


  • Reviewed by members of Editorial board for inclusion in MERLOT.
    Editor Review (not reviewed)
  • User review 4.25 average rating
  • Discussion (4 Comments)
  • Learning Exercises (none)
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Primary Audience: Grade School
Mobile Platforms: Not specified at this time
Technical Requirements: Flash player, Little Bird Tales, Internet, Microphone
Language: English
Cost Involved: no
Source Code Available: unsure
Accessibility Information Available: unsure
Creative Commons: no
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Discussion for Digital How-To books

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Avatar for Jason Murray
4 years ago

Jason Murray (Teacher (K-12))

I love the idea of having students learn by teaching others.  Mastery really comes with the ability to teach others how to do something.  I like that this is a group assignment so the students have another person to help them.  I think this lesson could be strengthened by addressing some of the barriers indicated.  Im not sure if the author means to expose the barriers so educatirs can attempt to overcome them when using this lesson, or if this is a copy that could be cleaned up a bit.

Technical Remarks:

Looks good!

Time spent reviewing site: 15 min

Avatar for Meltem Akbulut Yıldırmış
4 years ago

Meltem Akbulut Yıldırmış (Faculty)

This lesson is intended for use with 2nd grade students. This lesson provides students with multiple means of expression (recording oral story, using word processing, drawing/selecting pictures). I appreciate that this lesson enhances authenticity by integrating technology with real life (daily activities). 

Technical Remarks:

The website,, offers free accounts, but free accounts will be limited to 3 assignments. Paid accounts will only be limited by the amount of a teacher’s disk quota storage. The website is supported by the following browsers: Firefox 3 or higher
Safari 4 or higher
Internet Explorer 7 or higher

Time spent reviewing site: 20 minutes

Avatar for Kareem Jabbar Downer-Shojgreen
4 years ago

Kareem Jabbar Downer-Shojgreen (Consultant)

I really enjoyed this resource. The problem or need was addressed clearly and provided multiple Universal Design points of view. Also, there was plenty Assistive Technology factors within the establishment of the problem. In the real world performance, students have the opportunity to play different roles, and develop the ability to expand their vocabulary. For the evaluations consisting of a test or observation, fallowing Assistive Technology students could use a screen reader together with their digital How-To book. Something else that could be added to within socialization, is distributing their creations to other 2nd grades, teachers, and possibly schools. They could receive feedback and engage with a broader audience.


Technical Remarks:

Everything was fine

Time spent reviewing site: 40 minutes

Avatar for Edith Erickson
4 years ago

Edith Erickson (Teacher (K-12))

This lesson seems easy to implement and includes technology appropriate for 2nd grade students. The focus of the lesson is the content, using the technology to supplement and support the learning taking place. This seems like an authentic, engaging, and motivational tool for students. I look forward to using this lesson, and specifically into my third grade class. 

Technical Remarks:

The website featured,, offers free subscriptions and teacher accounts, allowing teachers to try the technology without the financial commitment of paying to use the service. There is an option to upgrade to a premium account, should a teacher decide that they would like more space and features for their classroom.

Time spent reviewing site: 10 minutes