In Part One, the report discusses the multiple reasons why eTextbooks like Amazon's Kindle are a much better approach for our nation’s students. The reasons they are superior include the ability to update eBooks relatively cheaply and easily, environmental and health benefits (such as reducing loads on young backs and shoulders), and the enormous opportunity to make texts more exciting and interactive—like the other tools children use today and that compete for their attention.
In Part Two, this paper discusses the economics of this approach. Cost estimates in the education world are notoriously sketchy and often self-serving, but it seems clear that over time an investment in these tools would produce big savings.
Finally, in Part Three, this paper outlines how we could implement such a plan, and why there could be broad-based support for it.
Also of interest is an article in the September/October 2009 issue of Scholastic Administrator Magazine titled, "Will the Kindle Change Education?" The article does a really good job of weighing in on both the pros and cons of using the Kindle in the classroom.
A lot of education folks have focused on using the mobile phone as the primary device to usher in the age of mlearning (mobile learning).
But perhaps we should be paying more attention to e-book devices like the Kindle, Sony Reader, Nook or the (rumoured) Apple tablet as the more viable mlearning option to delivering media rich and digital content to kids at school.
A lot the current research shows that when kids go to school they are disconnected from how they live outside the classroom. Either way, what's important is that we take a look at and try using any resource or tool--including e-books--that gets kids' more engaged and invested in their education.
Related: Amazon's Jeff Bezos Gives Away Kindles To His Alma Mater, Asks For Feedback