Ira Bickoff show #70 on Every Classroom Matters

Ira Bickoff Creates a New Way to Read Books: Google BookMap

Ira Bickoff  uses a new way to read primary source content in his marine science classes at Rondout Valley High School in New York State. Ira creates an overlay in Google Maps to create virtual BookMaps to integrate literature into the science content.

If you think these are a traditional “Google Lit Trip” – you're wrong. Ira is putting the full book text into the map.  For lack of a better word, let's call it a Google BookMap because what Ira has created isn't a synopsis, but the full book.

[button href=”″ primary=”true” centered=”true”]Listen to Ira Describe BookMaps[/button]

Students read the book, learn geography, and investigate marine science with these map-based reading experiences.  The books are older with expired copyrights.

The opening excerpt of Ira Bickoff's Sail the Book Manual.

Ira Bickoff has created a new genre of book: the BookMap. Ira has written a manual to help you get started. Tweak your Google Map settings and you can read a full book. His resources are free.

He has  incorporated Civil War content, artwork, and other primary source material into the experience.

The Voyage of the Beagle is the most popular BookMap so far.  For his next project, he's talking to the daughter of the only American on the Endurance in the 1800’s about the material she co-wrote with her father.

Ira is a physics teacher. In Every Classroom Matters Show #70, Ira describes how he's integrated physics activities into one of his books.

Ira explains how to tweak Google Earth to use it with students in a full series of video tutorials. (See below.) He is using BookMaps to change the way people read books and to engage students in literature.

I'm curious if some students relate in positive ways to text embedded on a map.

Note to the reader. A traditional bookmap lists pages and page numbers, this is different. I guess you could call this a Google BookTrip. But, to me, in some ways, that term diminishes the work because students are reading the full book.  BookMap turns it into a proper noun, so that might work. What do you call this new genre? Does BookMap work for you? Discuss in the comments. (I'm happy to update this post as you add your thoughts.)

What a fascinating teacherpreneur! I hope you enjoy Ira Bickoff's free BookMaps with your students.

[button href=”″ primary=”false” centered=”true”]Listen to Ira Bickoff – Every Classroom Matters #70[/button]

Add Ira Bickoff to your PLN

7 BookMaps Available from Ira Bickoff

  1. The Voyage of the Beagle
  2. Two Years Before the Mast
  3. Sailing Alone Around the World
  4. The Cruise of the Snark
  5. In the South Seas
  6. The Log from the Sea of Cortez
  7. South! The Story of Shackleton's Last Expedition 1914-1917

2 ArtMaps

Every Classroom Matters is a bi-weekly podcast by Vicki Davis on BAM Radio network dedicated to excellent education. Teach with better results, lead with a positive impact, and live with a greater purpose. Subscribe.

Show notes prepared by Lisa Durff and enhanced by Vicki Davis, Production Coordinator for Every Classroom Matters.

Need help listening?

If you’re clicking “Play” on the BAM Radio Site, this often works best in Internet Explorer. Or subscribe in a podcatcher. (View the tutorial.)

Never miss an episode

Get the 10-minute Teacher Show delivered to your inbox.

Powered by ConvertKit
Picture of Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

All Posts »
The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere
Update Required Flash plugin