Writing for Authentic Audiences #5: Multimedia Compositions

This year I tried an experiment: Instead of asking for traditional essays at the end of our final two units, I asked my students to create multimedia compositions. They still had to draft scripts to outline what they wanted to say or show. They still had to meet specific standards-based requirements. BUT their final products could […]

Writing for Authentic Audiences #4: Blog Ahead!

What is a blog anyway? In a world of Tumblr, Instagram, Facebook, Google Sites, Wix, Weebly, Twitter and Pinterest, where do blogs fit in? Here’s my own working definition: A blog— Is written using web-based tools. Contains several entries organized in reverse chronological order. Is based on EITHER writer interests or some kind of central theme. […]

How to Create a Class Anthology with iBooks Author

This year I decided to try iBooks to publish student memoirs. Why iBooks? Here are some of my reasons: My school district will probably go 1:1 with iPads for students this year or next, so I wanted to practice using an iOS-specific app like iBooks. While you can only read the iBook version on an iPhone, […]

Print Meets Digital: More on the Blended Writing Workshop

In the last post I mention there has been a lot of talk about teaching writing in 1:1 classrooms. Here’s the problem: What if your school is not yet 1:1? What if your students still don’t all have access to the internet at home? And most shockingly, what if you students don’t all have smart phones? Do […]

Why Student Blogs Are Worth the Trouble

Background My students and I are embarking upon blogging journey in response to California Writing Project’s Upstanders, Not Bystanders writing challenge. We use Kidblog because I can easily monitor posts and comments before they go live. Last year I kept the site password protected because it was our first year and I wanted to see how the blogging […]