How To Fake a Hyperlink Text Pop-Over in iBooks Author

text-pop-over

recruiting rosie cover

I just published my latest iBook Recruiting Rosie: The Sales Pitch That Won a War. iTunes. It’s a multi-touch book that showcases how the American government created a massive media blitz to convince women to take up WWII production and service jobs. One point that I wanted to stress was that while there was great diversity in the women who did war work, the media campaign almost exclusively featured white women. Minority and lower-income women needed little encouragement to move to higher paying war jobs. In contrast, married middle class women who had traditionally avoided work outside the household needed to be coaxed into the workplace. They were the target of a sales pitch filled with themes of patriotism, sacrifice and duty that depicted war work and military service as fashionable and glamorous.

To illustrate this point I selected two photographs from Alfred Palmer’s famous series of color photographs depicting women war workers done for the US Office of War Information.
I offered the reader the chance to guess which became a promotional poster and a Pop-Over was perfect for that interaction. The Pop-Over widget is new in iBA 2 and provides a custom image that acts as a trigger to display a scrolling region similar to the Scrolling Sidebar. The Pop-Over may also contain text and graphics.

While I could have used an image to trigger the pop-over, I preferred a more minimal text anchor. Since you can’t anchor a Pop-Over to text, I made some text look like a hyperlink and then made the Pop-Over placeholder invisible and positioned it over the text. (You can download a free preview of the book to see this the results.)

Here’s how I did it.

1. Layout the page with all images and text. This image below shows a section of the page at that starting point.

Pop-over start

2. Select the text, open my Styles Drawer and use “Hyperlink” character style to make the selected text look like a hyperlink. 

hyperlink style

3. Now I have the same page with what appears to be a hyperlink.

text as hyperlink

3. Use the Widget builder to select the Pop-Over widget. While I could include text in the Pop-Over, I delete the text and drag my poster image in. Next I use the corner handles on both the image and Pop-Over to enlarge both to a corresponding size that I want for final display in the iBook. (the image below show it before I finished adjusting the sizes of the poster and Pop-Over).

pop-over-with image

4. Click on the image placeholder to make it active and open the Inspector. Go to the Metrics Inspector and deselect “Constrain Proportions.” That way I can make the anchor the size and shape I want to fit exactly over my text. (the image show it before deselection)

object constrain proportions

5. Go to the Wrap Inspector and de-select “Object causes image to wrap”  - that keeps the object from pushing text aside. That way I can place it over my text. (the image show it before deselection)

object wrap selector

6. Use the Graphic Inspector to change the opacity of the object to zero – that makes it invisible. (that’s the slider at the bottom of the selector) 

set opacity

7. Drag the invisible Pop-Over to cover over my anchor text. I resize it as needed. It doesn’t have to be exact. But when the user taps on the “hyperlink” text I want to be sure they are actually activating the invisible Pop-Over trigger.

arrange invisible pop-over

8. Last step is to preview the iBooks Author project on my iPad and make sure it works.

Digital History Workshop – Tech Meets Critical Thinking

I recently spent a few days working with the middle and upper school history department at St. Margaret’s Episcopal School, San Juan Capistrano CA. Shout-out to James Harris (chair) and the department for being great hosts and invigorating to work with.

Photo – teachers are challenged to design Yes-No Decision Diagrams and experience the difference between creating a sequence and merely memorizing one.

yes-noOur goal was a practical hands-on workshop that fused technology, critical thinking, and strategies for students to be the “historian in the classroom.” SMES has implemented iPads at the middle school, and they’ll will be following 9th graders to the upper school next year. We were focused on ways to use iPads for content creation, feedback and reflection. Throughout the workshop, teachers used their iPads to respond to activities via LearningCatalytics (LC) and had guided practice in producing and delivering LC questions. iPads plus student response via LC is a killer app for student engagement.

I created a resource website that gives all the details of the project – but here’s some highlights.

  1. How to select and craft historic documents into DBQs. Key takeaway – use documents that students can interpret with minimal background knowledge, or your just giving them another reading assignment with illustrations.
  2. Summarizing and comparison strategies that work. Key takeaway – are you really asking students to present what they think is important, or are you merely asking them to “guess what I’m thinking?”
  3. How to craft the iPad DBQ. Easy: Haiku Deck. Harder (but worth it) iBooks Author.
  4. Effectively curating information and sharing it with your team – How to use Evernote in the classroom.
  5. How to integrate statistical analysis into the history / social science classroom – nGram Viewer and GapMinder.

By the end of the workshop teachers had created a variety of DBQs using Haiku Deck and iBooks Author. Lots of ideas for using HistoryPin, Evernote, nGram Viewer and GapMinder. While it wasn’t a definitive tech training, I think they left with critical lens to reflect on their practice and enough knowledge about the programs to see their feasibility for use in their classrooms. Not to mention “high-fives” when they got to show off the first iBooks they created.

Photo – teacher demonstrates her newly created iBook on US Imperialism.
ibook-test

Here’s a few comments from the participants:

  • All of the examples and learning experiences you chose for us were right on the mark. They were relevant and forced us to reflect on our practices and the students’ experience when in our rooms. I have a lot to think about and a lot to change! Now if only it was the summer!
  • Liked the interaction and really appreciated the hands on aspects of the training. I appreciate that you focused on higher- ordered thinking because I think that sometimes I hear some folks talking about iPads as if they (in and of themselves) are going to foster higher levels of thinking. In my experience, you still have to work really hard to make sure the kids are engaging in meaningful ways!
  • Loved learning about learning catalytics. I will definitely start using this with the next unit, especially to focus on building reading comprehension skills with my sixth graders. The haiku deck will work to introduce units in a visual way and to have students demonstrate understanding. The main thing I focused on yesterday though was the need to be more deliberate in providing rigorous higher level thinking activities for students. I think I do a good job of this, but I want to do an audit on the curriculum to see where exactly I am providing these opportunities for students.
  • I am really enjoying so many aspects of this. It would be great for more SMES teachers to be involved. It’s practical and philosophical. The tone is upbeat and helpful and the flexibility of meeting us where we are at is terrific. There are certainly a few things I’ll do differently.
  • I really liked all of the concrete ideas of apps and teaching strategies I can use in my classroom. I feel energized to go back and change all of my units, which does feel quite overwhelming though! I feel like I am doing so much wrong, but then again, I am grateful that I have ideas for where I need to go.
  • I especially liked discovering Learning Catalytics and Evernote. I could see both being very applicable to the classroom. Learning Catalytics is the tool I have been needing in order to keep middle schoolers engaged. I have been looking for ways to help them become more active learners, and this will be an excellent tool for that purpose.
  • Really great day- I so appreciate your conversation about analysis! I am now thinking about new ways to increase rigor and I actually think it will make my class more enjoyable. This line stuck with me, “When do we stop modeling for students… and have the courage to be less helpful!?” I feel like I am always answering student questions with, “I don’t know… can YOU?” or, “I really hope you figure that out!” I know it makes my students uncomfortable, but I THINK it makes them uncomfortable in a way that helps them learn to be problem solvers. Thank you for sharing strategies with my colleagues to empower us to be more courageous in the way we deliver instruction to help foster more divergent thinkers

As James Harris, the department chair, later wrote me in an email - 

At dinner on Sunday, as we discussed the school, the department, and the needs of both, you mentioned the danger of “shiny objects” – educational technology pursued solely for the sake of it. I’ve always considered myself wary of ed. tech reps and their products. So often, in my opinion, the costs of hurriedly implementing their products – “critical thinking” activities over true analysis, etc. – often far exceed the limited gains they may bring. That is why I was so pleased with our time together and with the message you brought to our faculty. When you said that you were “all about what is simplest and most effective” to aid student learning, be that “a paper and pencil” or programs such as Learning Catalytics, I knew we were in great shape.

In following up with the department over the past 48 hours I can say confidently that your time here was a success on a variety of levels. First, and perhaps most importantly, you gently challenged us all to reflect on our own teaching practices and reconsider our definitions of “analysis”, “student learning”, and “rigor”. It is quite easy to fall into a pattern after several years of teaching with a certain model and our discussions this week on how best to challenge our students forced us all to reflect on our own strengths and weaknesses. Furthermore, your modeling of programs such as Learning Catalytics and Haiku Deck opened my eyes to one of the simplest, most reasonable fusions of traditional / technological pedagogy I have seen to date. Our faculty left so excited about the possibilities ahead of them yet reassured as to the value of their previous best practices.

Master Common Core Skills with Free DBQ iBook

Progress and poverty

My latest multi-touch iBook, Progress and Poverty in Industrial America, is available for your iPad - free / iTunes. It’s a great resource for use in the classroom, and serves as a model for teacher or student curation of historic content into interactive digital DBQ’s. (More of my posts on publishing with iBooks Author.)

This 18-page document-based question guides students through the historian’s process with an investigation of the essential question, “How do we evaluate the social costs 
and benefits of technological innovations?” To make the question relevant to students, it begins with a brief examination of the impact of 21st c technologies / global economy on progress and poverty in contemporary America.

superba

Next the iBook turns to historic content set in late 19th century America. “Stop and think” prompts encourage a deep reading of many notables of the “Gilded Age” – including Russell Conwell, Henry George, Andrew Carnegie and Stephen Crane. Visual source material includes posters, 1908 Sears Catalogue, a gallery of photographs by Lewis Hine and video of one of Edison’s early Vitascope films. Guiding questions help students think more deeply about each document:

What does the document tell you about America at the turn of the 20th century?

How do these historic themes of “progress and poverty” relate to issues in America today?

How do we evaluate the social costs 
and benefits of technological innovations?

Hine gallery

Students are guided through the historian’s process with a focus on the contrast between historic perspectives.

For example, students can compare how industrialization impacted children in different ways in the stark contrast of a young girl demonstrating the use of Sears Superba Washing Machine (“mother’s little helper finds it easy to swing the Superba to and fro…
”) and a gallery of Lewis Hine’s child labor photographs.

Can the cannery worker really take advantage of the new libraries that Carnegie has so generously donated to the city?

timecardfull

Another document is from records of the NYS Factory Investigating Commission- Time card dated June 26, 1911. “She was employed in a fruit cannery. She worked 166 hours for the two weeks, earning $16.60.” Student can contrast that with an excerpt from Carnegie’s Gospel of Wealth  – “the millionaire will be but a trustee for the poor; entrusted [with wealth] … administering it for the community far better than it could have done for itself.”

Critical thinking questions based on Common Core skills are embedded throughout the text and help students “think like a historian.”

  • Who created the document?
  • What was the creator’s goal?
  • How does the document reflect its historic time period?
  • How do multiple documents support or contradict one 
another?
  • What historic “voices” are missing from this collection – women, immigrants, minorities, workers?

Finally student are invited to share what they’ve learned in writing and a variety of other products:

  • Compose an essay or blog post
  • Draw an illustration, create an infogram, post a video
  • Role-play a debate – Hine vs Carnegie? or 
Conwell vs a supporter of the Occupy Movement?
  • Start a discussion on Facebook, curate a photo gallery on Flickr, create a new Twitter hashtag
  • Research the world around you and leave a document for a future historian

How to Integrate Document-Based History with the Common Core

CCSS offers an incentive for teachers to use historic documents to build literacy skills in a content area while empowering students to be the historian in the classroom. But document-based (DBQ) instruction in this context requires four key elements to be successful:

  1. The right documents.
  2. Knowing how to look at them.
  3. Letting students discover their own patterns, then asking students to describe, compare and defend what they found.
  4. Basing the task on enduring questions, the kind that students might actually want to answer.

My just-published, second iBook – Workers Win the War: Toil and Sacrifice on the US Homefront – embodies that approach. Free at iTunes. It features:

Engaging source material that can be easily interpreted by students. Too often, DBQs use documents that require too much background knowledge to “interpret.” This collection offers over 60 pages of easy-to-intrepret media, much of it visual –  including 80 posters, 18 films, cartoons, radio broadcast, recording and sheet music and a dozen rarely-seen pamphlets.

Why should I work any harder

An interactive primary source analysis tool developed by the Library of Congress. Poster and film analysis is modeled in an multi-touch widget. Students can use an iPad-friendly historic document guide to analyze all the source material and share their observations with peers and teachers.

All across the curriculum, students are told to “analyze” material, but their thinking is constrained by the mandated Venn diagram or T-chart. Developing a comparative schema is messy work – but that’s where the learning takes place. To scaffold student analysis, “Workers Win the War” features CCSS-based prompts that ask students to stop and think more deeply about the content.

any-bonds-today

Essential questions that make an examination of the US homefront in WWII relevant to students’ lives today. Students experience first-hand how the government mobilized public support for the war through higher taxes, hard work and sacrifice.

Contrast that era with our “homefront” experience today, when only our troops and their families have been asked to make sacrifices for wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Today many see “big government” as an intrusion in their lives. In contrast, during WWII Washington played a very active role shaping American behavior and attitudes in support of hard work and sacrifice in support of the war effort.

Workers Win the War examines the themes of hard work and sacrifice through a variety of perspectives – increasing industrial production, food as weapon, worker health and safety, making do with less, scrap drives, rationing, price controls, and financing the war with higher taxes and bond drives.

Have you really tried

Students will enjoy the content: Cartoons featuring Bugs Bunny, Donald Duck and Daffy. Films and posters that equated sick days and long work breaks as near treason. Long-forgotten pamphlets that coached volunteer bond salesmen or advised school principals on how to organize a paper scrap drive – “turn your students into Paper Troopers!” Posters that chided “foolish women” who ignored price ceilings – “Why Shouldn’t I Buy it? I’ve got the Money!”

My favorite is a short film that features two spunky young working women who set out to buy some steak in violation of rationing limits. It turns into a nightmare sequence that demonstrates “rationing means a fair share for all.”

Prices Unlimited

Rationing_means_a_fair_share

To deepen their understanding of the historic content and hone their Common Core skills, students need a chance to create a unique product to demonstrate their learning. With that goal in mind, Workers Win the War has been designed to leverage the content-production capacity of the iPad.

All of the historic content in the iBook is in the public domain. Each source document is hyperlinked back to archives that provide access to the digital content. Students can easily remix the historic documents into their own galleries and projects.

Podcast: How to Use iBooks Author in the Classroom

My second podcast with Mark Hofer and David Carpenter for their series Ed Tech Co-Op was just posted. Go to Show 27: Peter Pappas and iBook Publishing (Dec 23, 2012) via Web | iTunes.

We focused on getting started with using iBooks Author (iBA) in the classroom. Here’s a synopsis of our discussion with some time markers to guide your listening.

We began with some comments on my iBook Why We Fight: WWII and the Art of Public Persuasion (screenshot above from iBook Author). (1:30) Mark noted how the book exemplified three key elements of universal design for learning – multiple representations of content, active learning strategies for students, and relevance for the learner. (5:30)

We discussed how an iBook can be designed to guide students in examining essential questions. (7:17) David noted content-curation advantages of teacher-produced iBooks over other learning management systems. (11:02) Then our discussion turned to iBA workflow specifics. (12:42) We discussed how to guide students in producing their own iBooks (17:30) and how student can find a more authentic audience beyond the classroom by sharing their book with their community and the world via iTunes. (19:32).

iBooks author projects are more than writing. They offer students the chance to create video, audio and visual content used in the iBook. (21:07) They also exemplify the best aspects of project-based learning and put a premium on preplanning and production-oriented decisions (25:40)

For tech specifics on using iBA see my collection of “how-to’s” – Publishing with iBooks Author 

My first podcast with Mark and David: Reflections on Teaching Strategies That Work.

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