I have a confession to make: I read more eBooks using my phone than traditional books. Before I continue, let me first say that I love traditional books (I almost called them old-fashioned, but we aren’t yet to that point!) and I continue to purchase them whenever I go into a bookstore. Given the choice; however, I am now more likely to choose an eBook that I can read on my phone or tablet over the paper version. As an example, I am currently reading Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs on my phone, despite the fact I bought it as a paperback a few months ago. Our home is crammed with bookshelves that are filled with books. Books I have read many times over, and books that are on my reading list. With the lack of time (and extra hands) brought on by motherhood, I feel that my discovery of eBooks and the simplicity of reading them on my device has reignited my love of reading.
I sometimes purchase eBooks, but have become more accustomed to borrowing them through the Fraser Valley Library. They have a simple application (App) that allows me to search for books, borrow, download and then begin reading all in a matter of minutes. More often than not, there are long wait lists for popular titles, but one can put a hold and have the eBook sent to their device when it becomes available. As education approaches an era where bring-your-own-device becomes the norm in classrooms, how ready are we to give up our traditional libraries in exchange for eBooks? How does this look at a school level? At a district level? What if we go beyond just eBooks, and explore digital resources for all classes, specifically Open-Source textbooks and classroom materials? As more students have screen access, do we not owe it to the environment and to our budgets to at least explore that possibility?
What do you think about digital materials? How realistic is it to switch an entire system over to digital materials?