Despite fearful predictions about the future obsolescence of books ever since the invention of radio, books are still as popular as ever! From reader-focused communities like Bookstagram (Instagram accounts focused on the aesthetics and content of books) to BookTok (TikTok accounts focused on reviewing, criticizing or promoting books), books aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.
At Studentreasures Publishing, we believe every child deserves a memory that lasts a lifetime, which is why we offer FREE classbook publishing kits that make it incredibly easy for you to turn your students into published authors. It’s so easy, in fact, that nearly 16 million students have become published authors by using our kits. We’re driven by the sheer pride in young authors’ faces, and we know that our books will grace family and school bookshelves for years to come.
If you have questions about the process, read on: we’ve got all the information you need to get the absolute most out of helping your class become published authors!
The Benefits of Publishing a Classbook
There are several benefits to helping your students become published authors. Some of these benefits are obvious and some are more subtle.
Makes Writing More Fun
We know you already go to great lengths to make your classroom both engaging and educational. You can increase your student’s engagement and help them learn a new type of writing process by publishing their work in a classbook.
The thrill of a blank page and knowing they can write or draw anything they want (as long as it falls within your chosen topic) can supercharge your students’ imaginations.
Motivates Students to Do Their Best Work
Sometimes students need something more tangible than the satisfaction of a job well done to do their best work. Knowing that their work is going to be published in a real book is as tangible as it gets!
Encourages Teamwork and Collaboration
Working on collaborative writing projects together necessitates a certain amount of teamwork. At the very least, they’ll need to work within the chosen topic.
Teaches Perseverance and Showcases Progress
We’re not going to pretend mistakes never happen when students are creating their pages, whether it’s drawing off the edge of the page, a misspelling or accidentally using the wrong marker. No worries! You can download replacement pages from our Teacher’s Lounge for exactly this reason.
There’s no confidence boost like the one that comes from the validation and acknowledgement of having your students’ words and illustrations preserved in ink on paper—and it will be a validating experience your students all got to share together.
Strengthens the Home-to-School Connection
Your students will think publishing a book is a big deal. Their parents will think publishing a book is a big deal. And they’re right! Publishing a book is a big deal! It’s the kind of big deal that requires communication and collaboration and reinforces bonds.
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The Classbook Publishing Process
When you decide to help your students become published authors, you probably have some parts already figured out. For example, you might have decided the theme or topic you want the book to be about; you might have an idea of how much classroom time will be available to spend on the project; you might have already discussed the idea with your class and found out how excited they are about it!
Other parts, like the exact process and recommended timeline, are probably a mystery. No worries. We’re here to play the Sherlock to your Watson and reveal the details you need to know about creating and publishing a classbook with your students.
Order Your Kit
The first decision you’ll make is to choose your publishing date. The publishing date is the date your kits are due back to us so we can publish your classbook, ensuring your published books are in your classroom by the time you need them.
Once you order your free classbook kit, it will arrive within 7-10 business days. We have kit types available for any type of project and every grade level. Are you thinking about your preferred publishing date? Reserve your date today when you order your kit!
You can choose the kit layout that works best for your class:
- Portrait, lined paper kit
- Portrait, unlined paper kit
- Landscape, primary lined paper kit
- Landscape, unlined paper kit
- Online kit
Our kits include:
- 66 kit pages: 33 for text & 33 for illustration
- Cover, title, dedication and meet the authors page
- A student-created sample book
- Step-by-step teacher guide
- Classroom publishing poster
- Replacement materials
- Parent order forms
- Access to our teacher community
- A FREE, deluxe hardcover copy of your classbook and the option for parents to purchase copies, too!
Fill the Pages with Your Class’s Literary and Artistic Masterpieces
Once you’ve received your classbook publishing kit, it’s time for your students to begin the journey to becoming published authors! Each student will contribute one page of writing and one page of illustration to create a collaborative classbook. You can choose any topic or theme you want for your classbook—the only limit is what you and your students are able to come up with!
For the best results, keep these tips in mind.
- Use washable markers to create big, colorful pictures, and use black ink for your hand-written stories.
- No crayons or pencils, please!
- Mess up? No worries! Replacement pages are included in our Teacher’s Lounge. You can print as many copies as you need.
- Check out the rest of our writing, editing and illustrating tips to create the best book possible.
- If you get stuck, start-to-finish support is available.
Publish Your Book
One week before your publishing date, safely pack up your completed materials and parent order forms (including those that chose not to pre-order) in the box your kit arrived in. Then, send it back to us using the prepaid UPS shipping label included in your kit. Once your kit arrives at our facility, we’ll transform it into a beautiful and professional hardcover book.
We’ll ship back your free, deluxe classroom copy along with copies ordered by parents—don’t worry about shipping fees; it’s on us! In just 20 business days, you’ll be unboxing your books in front of your class and showing them proof that they can now proudly call themselves published authors.
Remember to inform parents about your class’s publishing plans early on and give them the option to pre-order their own copy of your classbook. Parents will love to see their child’s creativity preserved in a published book that they can keep as a childhood keepsake and show off in their home.
Parent order forms are included in your publishing kit, and we also provide pre-written notes that you can send home to explain the project. You can spread the word with flyers, letters, emails and even a press release.
Publishing a book deserves more than a high-five… it deserves a full-blown PARTY!
Plan for a party on the day you unbox the books. You can go over-the-top with a themed dress-up day, decorations and a candy buffet or do something more lowkey like playing a game and listening to music. Either way, prepare for a big day of positive emotions while your students celebrate the class’s accomplishment!
Make sure to share your stories and photos with us on social media using the hashtag #ProudAuthors—we love seeing all the students beaming with joy once their hard work is published! Plus, you’ll be entered into our monthly Love it? Share it! Contest, where you will have a chance to win a $25 Amazon Gift Card for your class!
Is It Really Free?
Yes! Every teacher that publishes a classbook with their students through Studentreasures gets a book publishing kit and one deluxe hardcover copy of the book—ALL FOR FREE!
In exchange, we ask that you give your students’ parents the opportunity to pre-order a copy of the classbook. Parents can pre-order their own copy online starting at $20.95—parent order forms are included in your publishing kit, as well. Parents are under no obligation to purchase a copy, and your book is still FREE.
More questions? Take a look at our FAQ, and you’ll find the answer!
Classbook Project Ideas
Sometimes coming up with a topic or theme for your book is the hardest part. Below, we’ve rounded up some ideas to get your creative juices flowing. Take a look!
Travel Guide for a Made-Up Place
Explain to your students that each of them is going to imagine a new location. Imagine what the national flag and animals will look like, what type of geography the world has, the kinds of food the people eat and the traditions they have. Their task is to write and illustrate all the details of the imaginary location they’ve created!
Who Am I?
Students are invited to get introspective and ruminate on their thoughts and dreams. Ask them what they plan to do when they’re an adult, how they’ll achieve that goal and how the adult version of themselves will be similar to the way they are now. Encourage your students to dream so big that they’re in the stars, and then, help them build the ladder they’ll need to get there!
A Better World
Young learners can be surprisingly attuned to the world around them. Ask your students what they would do to help build a better world. You can frame the question as something more abstract (“If you could make a wish to change the world, what would it be?”) or fully grounded in reality (“What changes do you want to commit to making to improve the world?”).
Create collaborative illustrations by having students draw for one minute before passing the paper on to the next student to continue the drawing. To add a little bit of chaos, try adding more or less time to the drawing timer based on a dice roll or random number generator!
Ask your students to choose a historical figure and write a diary page from a day in their life. This can be a fun capstone activity after learning about a specific time period that included a lot of notable figures or diving deep into the life of one historical figure, like Benjamin Franklin or Martin Luther King Jr.
If you want your classbook project to be as collaborative as possible, consider story chains. Story chains are a process of writing a short story by passing the page to a new student after each line is written. The page is folded over so that each student can only see the line written by the prior student and not the whole story. Once the page gets to the last student who writes the last line, read it aloud to the class and prepare for a very silly situation!
Need More Inspiration?
Take a look at some of the classbooks we’ve published that cover a myriad of themes and were created by students in classrooms ranging from pre-K to high school!
How to Get Started
If you’re ready to help your students begin a big project with big rewards, take the first step by requesting one of our FREE classbook publishing kits! Simply sign up online, and we’ll take you through the entire process detailed above, from choosing your theme to proudly displaying your new classbook in a place of honor in your classroom library.
You can also check out our blog and online Teacher’s Lounge for more writing activities, lesson plans and teaching strategies. Order your classbook publishing kit today!