Title:Electronic textbooks for K12 education: Lessons learned from the Ohio as America redesign
Authors:Ty Pierce
Publication:MW17: Museums and the Web 2017

Electronic textbooks are quickly becoming the norm for K12 education, providing museums and cultural heritage institutions with new ways to connect to the modern classroom. Join members of the Ohio History Connection's digital team as they share their experience redesigning Ohio as America, an electronic textbook that has served as the organization's flagship educational product since 2011.

While much has been made of K12's rapid adoption of technology, it underpins a much larger and more significant shift in pedagogy toward student-centric learning. More schools are adopting blended learning methodologies, the need for differentiation and extension has increased, and the efficient use of teachers' time has become even more paramount. Despite being regarded as the premier resource for social studies education in the state, a comprehensive evaluation in 2015 showed that Ohio as America needed significant improvements to keep pace and continue to grow. The team embarked on a complete redesign that included the content, structure, and the platform itself. Less than a year later, the "2.0 version" launched—an enormous undertaking that included more than 100 teacher-created lessons, hundreds of primary sources, and significant UX improvements.

This session will include discussions on the following subjects: 1) website or Learning Management System (LMS)?; 2) working with teachers: pros and cons, do's and don't's; 3) teaching to standards, teaching to tests; 4) interactivity and Rich Media; 5) digital vs. analog: designing lessons with a foot in both worlds; 6) accessibility and differentiation; and 7) projects or products?

The ideas shared in this session can inform any museum creating digital resources for K12 audiences, regardless of discipline or subject, and will include an open discussion about other digital engagement opportunities for museums.