An Opportunity to Explore eBook Learning

For a couple of days, now, I’ve kept “Move Over Kindle” in my inbox. It was the title of an email from Sara Dobie, a publisher’s rep for Sylvan Dell Publishing.  Sylvan Dell has donated quite a few books to the Reading Tub, and every person (adult or child) who reads one wants more … Catherine’s Kindergarten teacher was hooked on several of the math-related titles. The stories are fun, educational, and always offer creative ways to explore the book and go beyond it, too.

One of the things I have always admired about Sylvan Dell is how much they put into building the book as an educational product. There are activities at the end of each book and additional online materials for teachers and parents.  Last year they offered grants to schools for site licenses, now they are kicking it up a notch by making their entire collection of  eBooks  (parallel versions to the hardcovers) available for free for 90 days.

Because of their generosity and dedication to helping kids become lifelong learners, I want to take the opportunity to “give back” to them and help spread the word about their new initiative. I’ve pasted in the press release so that I don’t miss any details. I do hope you’ll visit the site and explore some of the books.


JULY 29, 2009
MT PLEASANT, SC – Sylvan Dell Publishing goes LIVE this week with its next generation eBook, proving the company represents “so much more than a picture book;” it represents a full-fledged campaign for literacy in America.

From Sylvan Dell publisher and co-founder Lee German: “These are the most technologically advanced eBooks in the world today, featuring Auto-Flip, Auto-Read, and Selectable Language. There is nothing even close to this on the market. Amazon/Kindle and Barnes & Noble eBooks are not even in the same category. I encourage parents and teachers to take a test-drive and see for themselves. Let the children play with these for a few weeks, and you’ll be amazed at their excitement and improved reading performance. For children wanting to learn a foreign language or ESOL families learning English, these are phenomenal tools.”

Below is a link to a 90-day trial of all 45 Sylvan Dell eBooks:
Code expiration date: 10/31/2009

For guided directions:

“Whether in Auto-Flip or Manual Mode, switch back and forth between English and Spanish text and audio (more language choices on the way) and remain on the same page,” said German. “With the addition of Auto-Flip and Auto-Read features, our Sylvan Dell eBooks are powerful literacy and language learning tools to complement our mission of teaching ‘Science and Math Through Literature.’”

Sylvan Dell is no newcomer to literacy education and no stranger to technological advances. Since the company’s founding in 2004, co-founders Lee and Donna German have been ahead of the picture book publishing curve. Last year, Sylvan Dell awarded free eBook site licenses to over 2600 elementary and Title I/III schools nationwide through their School Resource Grant Program.

What’s next? According to German, “We want moms, dads, and grandparents to be able to record a reading of our books and add that audio to the language selection list. This is especially important for military families with a parent overseas. We are also developing an iPhone, iPod, and iPod touch application so that our eBooks will be available on handhelds and an online data capture system to allow teachers to track student reading and quiz performance.”

Sylvan Dell eBooks are available on the company website,, as are an array of free educational resources, which include Teaching Activities and Interactive Math and Reading Comprehension Quizzes. For more information about the eBooks, visit For more about the eBook Resource Grants:

6 responses to “An Opportunity to Explore eBook Learning

  1. If you’d like to see the unvarnished opinion of someone who HASN’T received Sylvan Dell books, then visit the Book Chook. Susan wrote about this opportunity to explore Ebooks this morning.

  2. Absolutely! I stand by every word, and only wish I lived closer so I could get on their review list.

    Just had to drop by after reading my Tub email this morning to say how amazing it is that we almost did the same post without communicating about it. Have we got our fingers on the pulse of kidlit or what?!

  3. Yaaaaaaaaaaaaay 🙂 Thanks for this wonderful write up. You’re amazing! We are so excited about this opportunity here at Sylvan Dell, so definitely tell everyone you know about the free trial!

  4. Terry, the Book Chook link isn’t working.

    Thank you for calling our attention to this great resource! I will take a look as soon as possible. I notified my readers as well.

    It’s a wonderful thing to promote literacy through technology. There are so many possibilities, not to mention the positive impact upon the environment. I just hope, though, that people don’t stop seeking out real books altogether. I think that would be a mistake, especially for young children.

    Technology can be a fantastic resource when used along with other types of materials and real world activities.

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