With this in mind I encouraged the teachers of our freshman Integrated Science Class to create their own textbook for the first year of our 1:1 iPad deployment. This was a huge undertaking so I encouraged them to dive into ck-12 to assemble a series of books to use with their students. The books were saved as ePubs and distributed through iTunesU.
The ePubs, while very nice, have some limitations. The ck-12 materials often have videos and interactive elements scattered throughout. In order to use these, the students must leave their book and go onto the web. Not a big deal, but often once students leave their books many never make it back again. For next year we want to make the books more encapsulated, removing the need for students to leave the book to work with the interactive elements. Enter iBooks Author. The last update Apple gave iBooks Author the ability to import ePubs. Now we can take the work that was already done and repurpose it.
- Create flexbook on ck-12 and download as ePub (done already)
- Import into your iBooks Author template of choice. All of the content will come in as a single chapter.
- Create a new chapter for each of the chapters in your original ePub
- From your chapter with everything copy all of the content for a chapter and paste it into the chapter you created for it. Keep going until you've done this with all the chapters.
- Work on Formatting: All of your images are "inline" you might want to use the Inspector to change them to Floating or Anchored so you can put them where you want them to be.
- More Formatting: Edit the text/paragraph styles used by ck-12 to be something you want (totally optional)
- Create Widgets for interactive content.
- Export as iBook and distribute or publish
Point 7, "Create Widgets" is the hard part. iBooks Author doesn't give you the ability to embed most web content directly. It does, however, give you the ability to add in HTML5 widgets. I typically build my HTML5 widgets in Tumult Hype. Totally awesome program. I haven't looked at the newest update yet but I will probably buy it. They do offer an educational discount, making it much more affordable. A less nerdy, as well as free, way would be to use Bookry to make your widgets. Once we get some of the books converted I'll post them here.
Below is my walkthrough of using Hype to embed a YouTube video in your iBook. You could use the same process for a lot of other web content as well.