Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Making History with Issuu, a Paperless Magazine Maker

The students in my West Civ class just published a series of "Year in Review" history magazines. Exported as pdfs to Issuu.com, I think they make an impressive case for opting for digital over paper in student publishing.

Thought I'd share an example with you!

Check out the 'works cited' page at the end; the student editors of this edition found some excellent resources online (we've been working on increasing the quality of our source and reference material). A primary source compendium that's become standard in our class is the Internet History Sourcebooks Project -- it and the BBC History site have literally made history textbooks in our classroom... well... history.

Best of all, the kids loved making these magazines. For the past couple of days, our room has been transformed into a virtual publishing house. And when technology and content together can foster that kind of engagement, you know you're on the right track.


  1. I just recently did the same project with some of my students. We built our magazines on Youblisher though. I do like the interface of issuu a bit better.

    Next year, if all goes well, I plan on having my students create open-content magazines by unit so that they can be used in the school and by subsequent classes.

    I'd be interested to collaborate to see how you've managed to get the students to "up the ante" on their source material. I teach middle school, and I try to encourage them to investigate sources, but for this age group they tend to gravitate towards the quickest solution. (Not all of them do, but a good percentage!)

  2. Great design. Congratulations to your students. I considered doing something similar with my students, but hesitated because I thought it would be too similar to copying and pasting Wikipedia. How is your students' magazine different from Wikipedia/encyclopedias?

  3. Wow, it looks really nice. The layout and all. Good work!

  4. I love this idea. One of the thing that I am going to do next year is ask my students to keep an on line portfolio of their writing This seems like an excellent way to do that.

  5. I cannot tell what program you made the magazines in. Issuu just acts as the interface to upload and view already created magazines right? What did you create them in?

  6. Sounds like a wise approach to publishing the content.

    I've got 170 pages of stuff on my site, and send people to read advice there instead of handing out paper flyers.

    With .doc and .pdf available to students, this makes a lot of sense.


  7. My only concern is that the terms and conditions stipulate that users must be 18 years of age. Although I like the interface, I will look for something else.


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