Some students really struggle with narrative writing. Some struggle with writing in general.
This week I began working with a class to create some interest around writing stories. We used technology to help us create our own picture books. Some students chose to find and use pictures from the Internet. Some choose to draw their pictures using the Doodle Buddy App. Some used Tux Paint (on the computers). Some even created their characters using a Minecraft Skin creator (www.minershoes.com). Once pictures and plans were created, we used Book Creator to compile and write the story.
This particular class is often unmotivated to work but once we introduced this innovative way to write a story, the attitude changed ten-fold! We found almost everyone of the students in this class were/are engaged throughout this writing process.
These stories are certainly not going to be perfect narratives but this was an excellent way we could get them to buy-in to the writing process and begin to show some interest. From here, we plan to take it a step further and create some success criteria for writing a story. At that point, we can work on improving their writing.
The ProcessThe students were to plan their story with your typical mind-map style graphic organizer. Then they worked on planning the sequence of events. Once these were completed they started working on the making and compiling part.
Doodle buddy - Those that chose this app, drew their pictures then saved to the camera roll. The images could then be imported into Book Creator.
Tux Paint - Those that chose Tux Paint on the computer would draw their pictures in Tux Paint, then export the image to their Google Drive, then - A fairly easy process once you've done it a couple of times.
Minecraft Skin creator - These students created their [Minecraft looking] character then took a screen-shot of the finished person. They then uploaded to their Google drive, logged into Google drive on the iPad and then imported into Book Creator. There was also an option to then import Minecraft character into Doodle buddy to add more details or accessories to their character.
The interesting thing about using this website was that a lot of students who decided to find and copy their characters from Google changed their mind and began creating/making their own characters. What an amazing way to utilize a 'gaming' website.
The books are still a work in progress so will try to post more pictures as we go.