Timothy M. Kaine, Governor
For Immediate Release - March 16, 2009
Contact: Gordon Hickey
Phone: (804) 225-4260
Phone: Cell (804) 291-8977
Director of Communications
Public Information Officer
Governor Kaine Launches Virginia Physics Flexbook ~ Open content web tool to provide supplemental 21st century physics materials for Virginia teachers ~
RICHMOND –Governor Timothy M. Kaine today announced the official release of the Virginia Physics Flexbook entitled 21st Century Physics Flexbook: A Compilation of Contemporary and Emerging Technologies. Authored by thirteen K-12 physics teacher volunteers, as well as industry and university faculty, the Flexbook is a web-based, open-content compilation that will allow teachers to share the most up-to-date lessons and techniques, bringing the best information and practices to all students in the Commonwealth. The Flexbook is a collaborative effort by the Secretaries of Education and Technology and the Department of Education, and makes Virginia the first state to have an organized compilation of open education resources dedicated to physics.
"As we work to prepare our students to compete in the global economy, it is important that we think creatively about how we provide our students with the best education possible," Governor Kaine said. "The Virginia Physics Flexbook will strengthen our physics curriculum by providing teachers free access to materials that will expose Virginia students to cutting-edge technologies."
The Flexbook is a compilation of supplemental materials relating to 21st century physics topics that will enrich and complement existing textbooks. The 21st Century Physics Flexbook document that is currently available will serve as a foundation, and its open-content format will allow material to be revised and updated to reflect the most recent learning in the field. Any Virginia teacher or school systems can utilize and customize the material after completing a free online registration. This is the Commonwealth's first Flexbook and will serve as a pilot for future use of open-education materials in expanded content areas and classroom usage.
The 21st Century Physics Flexbook is the result of a partnership between Virginia and the creators of the Flexbook concept, the California-based CK-12 Foundation, who provided the free, open-content technology platform for the publication. The Flexbook– defined simply as an adaptive, web-based set of instructional materials–is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike (CC-BY-SA) and can be used as is, in part, or enhanced by teachers based on their curriculum and classroom needs.
To ensure the quality of the content, the Flexbook underwent four reviews prior to release: a technical review by a college physics professor, a peer review by other authors, two student reviews, and a public review following an early release on February 27, 2009. There will be periodic reviews of the Flexbook to ensure the most relevant and appropriate information is included. The Virginia Physics Flexbook will be hosted by the CK-12 foundation and is immediately available at http://virginia.ck12.org.