Writing & Technology in the Classroom

Date of training session: December 2, 2010 4:00 - 6:00 p.m. in PAHS Dell Lab 216
Session Description:external image writing.GIF
Writing & Technology in the Classroom
Integrate technology into your language arts courses to reach, inspire, and motivate students to learn sound writing skills the 21st century way. In this session you will learn about websites, online writing tools, and language tutorials for you to add to your Moodle course or your class lesson. Offer your students digital opportunities to relearn and review outside of class, additionally helpful for the absent student. Also teach students how to improve their writing by using plagiarism checkers and online writing tools.

Essential Questions:

  • Why should we make the effort to connect students to writing through the technology integration?
  • How can technology be used in the classroom to increase the quality and quantity of student writing?
  • What technology tools are specifically designed for the classroom to teach and practice writing?
  • What technology tools could be used to teach and practice writing classroom?

Writing Research and Best Practices:

Students Believe that Using Their Technology Helps Their Writing Skills - found in New Zealand Interface Magazine, March 2010
Writing Articles with Six Traits of Writing - by Smekens Education Solutions
How to Teach the Six Traits of Writing - blog posting on Effective Teaching Articles blog, plus more good postings on writing in the classroom
Writing, Technology, and Teens Report 2008 - by Amanda Lenhart, Sousan Arafeh, Aaron Smith, Alexandra Macgill
Informal Style of Electronic Messages is Showing Up in Schoolwork, Study Finds - New York Times article by Tamar Lewin, April 2008
Teach Writing without Handwriting - by Janienne Jennrich

external image writing_process.gifWriting in the Classroom Across the Curriculum with the Help of Technology:

Encourage Students to Write More Reflectively - by Teaching Saggitarian
Google Docs - Also see my wiki page on Google Docs
Improve the Writing Process with Google Docs - by Google
Penzu - Personal Journal and Online Diary

Digital Examples of Writing in the Classroom:

The Interactive Textbook - by Mr. George Engel's classes in Clarkstown School District South in New York
Mixbook - education photo gallery
Digital Storytelling - see my wiki page for examples & ideas for students to create their own digital stories beginning with writing scripts

Technology Tools Designed to Teach and Practice Writing in the Classroom:

Figment - a new writing site that helps build literacy in our students
BBC The Writer's Room - many resources to help writers
Young Writer's Workshop - by the University of Virginia
Ten Great Sites to Create Digital Newspapers/Magazines - by Technology Tidbits: Thoughts of a Cyber Hero blog
NewsCred Platform - create your own newspaper in 60 seconds
Diagrammr - "create and share diagrams by writing sentences"
Writing Fun - by Jenny Eather; full of text organizers to help students with the writing process
Issu - publish and share your writing
Interactive Writing Tools - over 25 Web 2.0 tools!
Instant Poetry Forms - by Brian Markward, Brandon Steigerwald , Joe Merlino, & John Burton, with lesson plans!
Kerpoof Studio - elementary students can publish a variety of writing with this web site
VoiceThread - students can write and present information while allowing peers to comment and add content to the story
Dipity - students can create a timeline prior to writing
Glogster - Two Writing Teachers blog posting about using Glogster to teach and practice writing
Writing Tools and Technology-Rich Learning - by TeacherTap
Blogs - see my wiki page on blogging in the classroom
Wikis - see my wiki page on creating wikis in the classroom
Evernote - keep track of notes through the writing process
ABC Teach - writing graphic organizers

Media and Interactives to Teach Writing & Literacy:

Children's University of Manchester: Welcome to Literacy - complete with World Languages Map, English Language Timeline, Naming Nouns, Adjective Detective, Math the Eponyms, Idioms Game, Word Classes Jigsaw, & More!
Poetry Writing - by Jack Prelutsky, Karla Kuskin, and Jean Marzollo
ReadWriteThink - writing results for lesson plans, student interactives, calendar activities, and resources
Classroom Blogging as Writing Instruction by mysterbee06 on YouTube
Library Graffiti - by ReadWriteThink
Scholastic Online Activities & Interactive Learning
Free Writing SAT Resources - majortests.com

Dictionaries & Word Finders:

Word Central - by Merriam-Webster
VisuaWords - online graphical dictionary
Lexipedia - visual mind map dicationary
Dictionary Links - also bilingual dictionaries for ESL students
Ten Best Online Rhyming Dictionaries - by All Sharing: Web 2.0 for Educators
Rhymr - free online rhyming dictionary
Synonyms with Antonyms - synonyms.com
Word Sorter - find just the right word
Vocaber - learn and remember vocabulary

Parts of Speech:

Identifying Adjectives - by EnglishZone.com
Parts of Speech - by Enchanted Learning
Transition Words - by Jefferson County Schools
Parts of Speech Video - by Teachnology
Grammar Quick & Dirty Tricks - Check out this site for easy tips for correct grammar from the Grammar Girl blog

Prompts & Brainstormers:

The Brainstormer - by Andrew Bosley
Easy Street Prompts - video prompts, visual prompts, random words, sites of the week, & resources for writers
Writing Activities - by Enchanted Learning with Essay Topics
Writing Fix - "home of interactive prompts", the six traits of writing resources
Writing Prompts - by the Writer's Digest
Inspire Young Writers - by Scholastic
Soul Surfer Video Writing Prompts - clips from the Soul Surfer movie

Six Traits of Writing:

6+1 Traits Writing - by Education Northwest, formally by Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory
Six Traits of Writing for Elementary Students - by Edina Public Schools
Six Traits Writing Assessment - by Ginny Hoover
Six Traits of Writing - by Phillip Martin
Interactive Six Trait Writing Process - by Steve Gardiner and Vince Long, Billings Senior High School, Billings, Montana
Elementary & Secondary Writing Resources (six traits writing process) - by Kent School District, Kent, WA
Six Traits Assessment Rubric - by Arizona Department of Education
Adapting Six Traits Writing with ESL Students - by Margaret M. Williams, June 2010

Different Ways to Publish Online:

Folding Story - a writing game where students take turns writing a line of prose
Ficly - microfiction in a collaborative way
Fabulate - a collaborative book project
Wikistory = wiki + stories
One Million Monkeys Typing - Threaded discussions galore!
Story Mash - the future of collaborative fiction
Novlet - collaborative writing in passages in any language

Universal Design for Learning/Assitive Technology for Writing Success:

UDL Toolkit - free technology toolkit for UDL in all classrooms - Writing Tools
CAIU Assistive Technology Wiki - by Beth Panek
Assistive Technology Writing Tools - by greatschools.com
Assitive Technology for Writing - by AdLit.org
Assistive Technology Devices for Writing and Spelling by Georgia Project for Assistive Technology

Research Topics:

Questia Online- provide a list of research topics and resources for each topic
Research Guide for Students - MLA, APA, plus more! by Online Computer Library Center
How to Tackle a Research Paper - by the University of British Columbia
The OWL (online writing lab) at Purdue - an online research guide like no other!
Resources for Research - by C. Munzenmaier, Urbandale, IA
Thesis Builder - "online tools for thesis statements and outlines" by Tom March
Encyclopedia.com - search many encyclopedias and dictionaries on various topics

Elementary Reading & Writing Tools:

Turtle Tales
My Little Book Project - young students can create a digital book which families may order
StoryJumper - publish children's books

Lesson Plans:

Lessons on Literacy: Stories from School - A Great Simile Lesson - by the Literacy Coach; search for more writing lessons on this blog
ReadWriteThink - writing results for lessons, student interactives, calendar activities, and resources
TIME Lessons for Writing - across grades 4-8
Writing Lessons, Graphic Organizers, & Handouts - by Ray Saitz and contributors to his website Outta Ray's Head
30 Ideas for Teaching Writing - by the National Writing Project


Write On - professional development opportunity to help teach writing composition for grades 3-5; complete with PowerPoints, prompts, activities, & more; by Jefferson County Schools
Goal: Create ~ Writing Resources (scroll down to Writing) - by Shelly Terrell
Traci's Lists of Ten - by Traci Gardner; full of writing resources
AdLit.org - writing resources topics A to Z!
Teaching that Makes Sense - the free learning project; full of good writing tips and advice for teaching writing
edHelper - full of writing resrouces, graphic organizers, lessons, actitivites, prompts, plus more!
National Writing Project - "improving writing and learning in the nation's schools"
Enchanted Learning - complete with book or discipline report writing, graphic organizers for the writing process, topics, writing activities, & parts of speech
Creative Writing - by Awesome Library
Writing Tools - by allwords.com
The Tools of a Writer - by Roy Peter Clark
The Five Steps of the Writing Process - by Stacey Blanchard
The Writing Process - by Dr. Janette M. Hughes
Ideas for Teaching Writing - Kim's Korner for Teacher Talk
Supporting New Literacies - presentation by dogtrax in New Literacies Initiative

Best of....by Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day Blog for Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL - scroll down to Writing - One of my favorite blogs! (@Larryferlazzo on Twitter)

The Best Websites For K-12 Writing Instruction/Reinforcement
The Best Places Where Students Can Write Online
The Best Sites For Grammar Practice
Not “The Best,” But “A List” Of Mindmapping, Flow Chart Tools, & Graphic Organizers
The Best Resources For Researching & Writing Biographies
The Best Resources For Learning How To Write Response To Literature Essays
The Best Places Where Students Can Write For An “Authentic Audience”
The Best Places Where Students Can Create Online Learning/Teaching Objects For An “Authentic Audience”
The Best Places To Read & Write “Choose Your Own Adventure” Stories
The Best Sites To Learn About Advertising
The Best Websites For Developing Academic English Skills & Vocabulary
The Best Online Interactive Exercises For Writing That Are Not Related To Literary Analysis
The Best Online Resources To Teach About Plagiarism
The Best Resources For Learning Research & Citation Skills
The Best Sites For Students To Create & Participate In Online Debates
The Best Online Resources For Helping Students Learn To Write Persuasive Essays
The Best Spelling Sites
The Best Sites For Gaining A Basic Understanding Of Adjectives
The “Best” Sites For Helping Students Write Autobiographical Incident Essays
The Best Sites To Learn “Feelings” Words


DraftBuilder6 - propriety software by Don Johnston; helps struggling writers
WordQ Writing Software - "helps students writing independently and with confidence"

Teaching Students About Plagiarism:

The Ultimate Plagiarism Resource: Detecting Plagiarism and Preventing It - by GuidetoOnlineSchools.com, complete with resources, tips, tutorials, & plagiarism checkers


English Central - Good listeners help make good writers when learning proper English
Gaming in the English Secondary Classroom - a wiki on virtual worlds and games for the secondary English classroom, complete with lesson plans
FREE: Federal Resources for Educational Excellence - free language arts resources by federal agencies
The Writing Process Glog - created by tinybunny
Writing Traits ~ Writing Process Glog - created by TeacherMiranda
Glogster Professional Development - by Howard High School on YouTube about Glogster

Writing Support Information from Wilkes University Educational Leadership Doctoral Program (for teachers who are writing in graduate classes):

Free Resources:
Product Info.
APA Referencing Macros v2.0
FREE software
APA formatting software.
Uses Word as the template.

APA Research Style
FREE site
APA Research Style Crib Sheet
Contains links to other helpful support sites

Guides to APA Styles Research Papers
FREE Site with downloads
APA quick reference, crib sheet, writer’s guide, APA101, reference manager

Citation Machine
FREE site
Formats References into APA format
Also provides MLA, Chicago, & Turbian Styles

APA Styling Tips
FREE site
Contains APA tips’ especially useful information on removing biases in language

APA Style Resources
FREE site

APA Format & Style guide
FREE site

Knowledge Base

Propriety Resources:
Product Info.
APA Wizard
APA formatting software.
Can upgrade to Wizards for Students which includes the APA formatting software, plus MLA.

Eazy Paper
APA formatting
2 day free trial download available!

APA Format Made Easy
Dr. Paper

Writing Support
Varies by service
1-1 tutoring available; writing submissions; & other great services geared at improving your writing skills

Need Help?

  • Email Melanie Wiscount (melanie_wiscount@pasd.us) with any questions you may have about using these technology tools in the classroom.
  • Check out my teacher website at: http://www.melaniewiscount.com