Using Online Resources to Engage Your Students in Writing

Rock County February 8, 2013 In-service Presentation
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Writing Tools

A digital storytelling tool that lets anyone easily create his or her own 3D pop-up books
My Storymaker
My StoryMaker lets you control characters and objects - and creates sentences for you! Once you are done
with your story, you can print it out. You cannot go back and edit a story once you have ended it but, if you click
"yes" when asked to share it with others, you can print it out again by entering the magic number it gives you in the
box on the right.
Storybird is a collaborative storytelling site.
The Art of Storytelling
The Art of Storytelling site offers educators a fresh resource for introducing various writing genres to their students.
Is an online diary and personal journal that is focused on privacy.
Word Tamer
Word Tamer is a neat site for learning the process of developing characters, settings, and plots in creative writing. Word Tamer is set up as an interactive journey through a carnival of literary devices. As students move through the carnival they develop characters, develop a setting, and develop a plot for their stories. At each stop in the Word Tamer carnival students can print out the words they have written. Along the way there are videos to help students understand the roles of characters, settings, and plot development in crafting a good story.
MixedInk's collaborative writing platform allows groups of any size to weave their best ideas and language into a single text.
Digital Is
The National Writing Project Digital Is website is a collection of ideas, reflections, and stories about what it means to teach writing in our digital, interconnected world. Read, discuss, and share ideas about teaching writing today.
Museum Box
Museum Box allows you to build up an argument or description of an event, person or historical period by placing items in a virtual box. You can display anything from a text file to a movie. You can also view the museum boxes submitted by other people and comment on the contents.
Sparkle Box
A great site with various writing frames and templates that cover newspapers, letters, book reviews, diaries and more.
Read-Write-Think Printing Press
Create your own newpaper, brochure, booklet or flyer with this ReadWriteThink Printing Press
Inspired picture writing.
StoryLines for Schools App
Learn new vocabulary and language concepts that are grade appropriate, and spark your creativity in a safe enjoyable manner.
StoryLines App
You begin a StoryLine with a common saying. A friend grows the StoryLine by illustrating that saying. Another friend titles that drawing (without seeing the original saying). Yet another friend illustrates that title, and so on.
Dragon Dictation App
Dragon Dictation is an easy-to-use voice recognition application powered by Dragon Naturally Speaking that allows you to easily speak and instantly see your text or email messages.
iDiary for Kids Lite App
This is the Lite version of iDiary for Kids. It is an ideal platform for children ages 5-13 to plunge into journaling. Keeping a journal helps children improve their writing skills, develop their creativity and boost their self-confidence.
Poetry Creator - VersesApp
Ever wonder what it would be like to mash-up a Shakespeare poem with a Hip Hop Song? Verses is a new iPhone and iPad app that puts a fresh spin on a cherished classic: refrigerator magnet poetry.
Useful English Phrases App
Useful English Phrases is a collection of conversational and public speaking phrases. The app will surely help you in your public speaking as well as day to day communications.
Sentence Make Free App
Sentence Maker is an exciting interactive game that helps your child rapidly learn to make and complete their own sentences all with just the touch of their finger. The interface is so easy to use that even a 9 month old baby will delight in moving their first words around the page. Ideal for ages 1 to 6.
Write 2 App
Write 2 is an ultimate note taking, writing & markdown editing app. It utilizes all of its great features to give you the best experience while typing on your iPhone, iPod Touch, & iPad.
IEW Writing Tools App
Instantly improve your writing! Brought to you by the Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW), this free app includes charts and lists to help you write organized and stylish papers.
Sentence Magic App
This app helps your child to read words. This app helps your child to read sentences. This app helps your child to build sentences.
Sentence Builder Free App
A fun new sentence builder app is designed to learn about words, sentences, pronunciation, grammar, and punctuation.

Writing Prompts and Brainstorming

Scholastic Story Starters
A quick writing activity that can be tried everyday, more for the elementary level.
Five Card Stories
You are dealt five random photos for each draw, and your task is to select one each time to add to a
selection of images, that taken together as a final set of 5 images- tell a story in pictures.
Mind 42
Manage all your ideas, whether alone, twosome or working together with the whole world - collaborative, browser-based and for free.
Story Starter
The Story Starter randomly generates 2,667,073,500 story starters. This idea generator can be used for short stories, novels, plays, scripts, or just for fun.
Story Starter Jr.
Provides 2,340 story starters for kids.
Online mind mapping and brainstorming.
Brainstorming made simple.
Access mind maps anytime, anywhere. Enjoy the same functionality as the online version. Work offline with your ideas.
Simple, effective online collaboration, multi-user whiteboard, live audio, image collaboration, text chat and more.
PrimaryWall is a web-based sticky note tool designed for schools that allows pupils and teachers to work together in real-time.
One Word Writing Prompts
Site gives you a word and you have 60 seconds to write down your thoughts.
Writing Prompts
Great place to find writing prompts.
Imagination Prompt Generator
This site shares writing prompts and also has several helpful links for writing instruction.
iWrite Poems App
You’ve been assigned to write a poem for school. You’re sitting in your room, and you have writer’s block. What do you do? Chances are you take a break, watch some TV, surf the Internet, in hopes of discovering some inspiration - not a very productive use of time. Instead of doing that, why not have your phone write your own poetry!
Popplet Lite App
Great for work. Great for school. Popplet is a platform for your ideas. Popplet's super simple interface allows you to move at the speed of your thoughts. With Popplet you can capture your ideas and sort them visually in realtime.
Mindmeister App
MindMeister lets you create, edit and share your mind maps on the go and synchronize them with the award-winning free online MindMeister service.
Simple Mind App
Mind mapping tool that turns your iPad, iPhone or iPod touch into a brainstorming, idea collection and thought structuring device.
Idea Sketch App
Idea Sketch lets you easily draw a diagram - mind map, concept map, or flow chart - and convert it to a text outline,and vice versa. You can use Idea Sketch for anything, such as brainstorming new ideas, illustrating concepts, making lists and outlines, planning presentations, creating organizational charts, and more!
Word a Day App
Learn a new word every day of the year! There are more than 365 words in this App. Vocabulary building can never be this easy. Vocabulary building process can be fun and this app just does that.
Mindomo App
Capture your thoughts directly on mind maps, turn them into presentations on the fly, and share them with others. Synchronize your maps to the cloud, from any device.

Comic Strip Creation and Movie Making

Zimmer Twins at School
Zimmer Twins at School bundles the user-friendly and enjoyable moviemaker children love with class management tools for teachers.
Make Beliefs Comix
An easy and fun way to create your own comics.
Bitstrips for Schools is an educational tool that engages students using a medium they love - Comics! Can get a 30 free trial.
The site’s main purposes is to allow you to create your own comic strips populated by characters you create by mixing together black and white, hand drawn elements.
Comic Touch Lite App
Make your photos come alive by giving them the Comic Touch. Add balloon to give your subjects thoughts and words. Add captions to describe the scene of give the photo a title.
Toontastic App
Lights, Camera, Play! Toontastic is a storytelling and creative learning tool that enables kids to draw, animate, and share their own cartoons with friends and family around the world through simple and fun imaginative play!
iMovie App
Make beautiful HD movies anywhere with iMovie, the fast and fun moviemaking app that puts everything you need to tell your story at your fingertips.

Publishing Tools

Boom Writer
BoomWriter is a supremely engaging creative writing website that has students reading, writing and assessing content. Once the best chapters are selected the book is ready to be published.
Storyjumper is a place to create and discover stories for kids.
Figment is a community where you can share your writing, connect with other readers, and discover new stories and authors. Whatever you're into, from sonnets to mysteries, from sci-fi stories to cell phone novels, you can find it all here.
Page Flip-Flap
Tansform your doc, pdf, word or movie into an interactive flipbook.
A creative writing community for authors, amateur writers and readers interested in collaborative fiction.
Scribble Press App
Scribble Press for iPad is a book creation platform that allows kids to create and share their own stories with hundreds of great drawing and writing tools
Book Creator App
Anyone can Write! Express Books gives you the tools you need to Create great Text, Art, Sound & Graphics! Set your Layout page by page to perfect your Book, then Publish! Right now! Today! Share your Book with the World instantly via PDF, iBooks, .mov file to Photo Library!
Story Creator App
With Story Creator you can easily create beautiful story books containing photos, videos, text, and audio all in one gorgeous collection.
A Novel Idea App
A Novel Idea is the premier tool for plotting your story and recording bursts of inspiration. Use its simple interface to create your characters, locations, scenes, and novels and then link them together to create your story's plot. Use the Idea feature to quickly jot down your creative sparks, snap pictures and link them to your story elements. Arrange your scenes by dragging and dropping them into place. Add scene goals and objectives for each character.
Picturebook App
Create and share your very own illustrated stories in a few simple steps!
Storymaker HD App
Make Creative Story!
Little Story Maker App
The only story book maker of its kind. Little Story Maker offers a magical way to enjoy your personal pictures and stories with your child. The little ones will love to hear stories with pictures of people and places they are familiar with.
Older kids, will love the stories and the ability to easily create stories all on their own.

Bibliography Makers

It is very decent to give credit where it is due. The fully automatic bibliography maker that auto-fills.
It’s the easiest way to build a works cited page.
The free automatic bibliography and citation maker, save time by creating a works cited instantly in MLA, APA, or Chicago!
EasyBib App
You can create accurate MLA, APA, and Chicago style citations in seconds by scanning a book bar code or by typing the name of a book. Build and manage your works cited list on the larger screen of the iPad. Once done, email your citations and then export your citations to's popular bibliography management service.

Grammar, Plagiarism and Proofreading

Paper Rater
Online grammar checker and proofreader
An online visual semantic network with dictionary and thesaurus reference functionality built on Vantage Learnings
Multilingual Concept Net. Lexiedia presents words with their semantic relationship displayed in an animated visual word web.
Free rhyming dictionary.
Grammar Up App
Grammar Up can help learners to improve their grammar, word selection and vocabulary.
Grammar Wonderland App
Fly, swim, feed, and toss your way to grammar mastery. Who knew grammar practice could be so much fun? Lead your character through many wonderful adventures as you practice using nouns, verbs, adjectives, and more!
Grammar Lite App
This is LITE version of "Grammar Basics and Advanced". Contents are in the form of drag&fill blanks, crossword, multiple choice questions and subjective question. Lite version covers 5 topics:
The Grading Game App
The Grading Game: Race to find typos and grammar errors!
Proofreader App
This is a simple app that gives examples of common mistakes that proofreaders often have to correct.
Grammar Express - Tenses App
Grammar Express : Tenses is the course in mastering English grammatical tenses.
Grammar Express - Parts of Speech App
Grammar Express : Parts of Speech is the complete course in mastering usage of different parts of speech. It contains over over 130 pages of lessons explaining each part of speech with several examples.

Other Writing Resources

Wordle is a toy for generating "word clouds" from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that
appear more frequently in the source text.
Tagxedo turns words, famous speeches, news articles, slogans and themes into a visually stunning word cloud, words
individually sized appropriately to highlight the frequencies of occurrence within the body of text.
Word clouds for kids. Recommended for grades 2, 3, 4, 5.
WordItOut is the word cloud generator that gives you control with many custom settings. Free to use and no sign up required.
Word Cloud generator.
Create your own tag cloud from any text to visualized word frequency.
Your 3-ring binder for the web, collect your resources, organize them neatly and easily and make an impression.
Linoit is a colorful collaboration tool that uses a canvas and sticky notes. Great for brainstorming.
Google Docs
Google docs has many templates that can be used with writing projects. You will find templates for student newspapers, student reports, press releases, newsletters, class notes and many more.
Creative online multimedia posters which you can include text, audio, photos, video and graphics.
Sight Words Free App
Features: 1) 300 sight words from Dolch list 2) Presented by grade level 3) Two modes available: - Read the sight words, - Spell the sight words! 4) Once the word is read/spelled correctly it can be marked off by touching the checkmark agains the word. This helps to filter out the words that have already been mastered and the ones that need to be practiced.
5) Once all the words in a level are checked you get a checkmark against that level on the main menu. 6) In read mode: you can also review all the words together on the review screen where the words are presented in list format. Very useful for parents to go over the list and quiz the child.
Big Trace App
Learning tracing of letters and numbers with oversized large numbers.
Sight Words 1-25 HD App
Give your child the building blocks needed to learn to read. Combine fun, easy-to-follow activities with hands-on and audio features to jumpstart the learning process.
Fry Words App
The Fry 1000 Instant Words are a list of the most common words used for teaching reading, writing, and spelling.
Sight Words App
Sight Words, also known as the Dolch List are an integral part in learning how to read. The Dolch Word list contains 315 words that are broken down into appropriate age groups. It is important for young readers to be able to instantly recognize these high frequency words in order to be proficient and fluent readers.
POW Words App
Form as many words from the given set of 6 jumbled letters in each round. Your score is carried forward until you are unable to form a six letter word within a round.
Linoit App
Lino is an online stickies service that offers stickies and canvases. You can post, see and peel off stickies on canvases freely. Stickies posted from this iPhone/iPad App can be accessed with PC browsers.
My Spelling Test (Spell Free) App
Do you want your child to be a better speller? Imagine your kids begging you to practice for their next spelling test. This app is like creating your own spelling bee and is a great way to save time on homework.
Free Exam Vocabulary Building Accela Study App
Using AccelaStudy's intuitive flashcard-like approach on your iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, you can quickly expand your English vocabulary for graduate school exams, university entrance exams, professional advancement, or simply increased language proficiency. Many commonly tested vocabulary words from college and graduate school entrance exams are included with definitions, synonyms, and example sentences. Easily learn new terms with four different ways to study, including a powerful quiz feature which helps you test your progress and a spaced repetition mode which helps you memorize words in the shortest possible time.
Vocabulary Spelling City App
VocabularySpellingCity is a fun way to learn spelling and vocabulary words by playing engaging learning gamesusing any word list.
Sight Words for Reading HD App
This app helps students learn sight words, the most common words in children's literature. It covers a few words from both the Fry's and Dolch lists. Words are presented in context in fun videos. This helps learners understand the meaning of the words, which aids in reading comprehension.