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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation
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6 iPad Apps for Creative Writing

Creative writing can be a daunting task for students who struggle to think of story ideas or who don't love the writing process. For kids who have trouble putting pen to paper, there are a handful of fantastic iPad apps that just might inspire them to tell a story. Your students will be able to gather ideas, brainstorm and publish writing straight from their tablet.

For students at all levels, creative writing is an important part of English language arts curriculum. Not only do the Common Core State Standards specifically outline the expectation that students should be able to express themselves through the written word, but this is also an essential real-world skill. Students should have the ability to write narratives that tell a story from their own life or a story that they've imagined. The following apps will inspire young writers and give them a vehicle for sharing their work.

Writer's Studio ($4.99)

Writer's Studio is a dynamic app that gives kids lots of flexibility for creating storybooks. Perfect for upper elementary and middle school students, this app has lots of features that allow it to double as a presentation tool. Kids can add clip art from within the app and import pictures to each page. They also have the ability to add audio recordings to their final product. This app gives them a handful of options for exporting their creations.

Writing Prompts for Kids ($1.99)

If your students are having trouble thinking up an idea for a story, you'll definitely want to check out Writing Prompts for Kids. There are four buttons on the screen that kids can press to set the stage for a new story. With a tap on the screen, they can combine a random situation, character, setting and object to inspire their creative writing.

Foldify ($3.99)

A fun idea for inspiring student writers can involve the super cool iPad app Foldify. With this tool, you can create a cube with images on each side. After printing out your three dimensional creation and assembling the cube, have children roll it across their desk and write a story inspired by the image that it lands on.

Write About This ($3.99)

Write About This will help students find story ideas and give them a space to record their thinking. Great for elementary school students and English language learners, this app generates images and writing prompts that should inspire students to write a story. They can choose from a range of ideas that fall into different categories. Kids are also given the space to free write within this app.

Book Writer ($4.99)

An easy-to-use app, Book Writer will let students of all ages create high-quality eBooks that show off their creative writing. If your students are familiar with Keynote and Pages, they'll have no trouble navigating the layout of Book Writer. In addition to letting them work with pictures and text, this app also lets kids add audio, video and songs to each page. Your students' eBooks can be read as PDFs or in iBooks.

Writing Challenge ($0.99)

Writing Challenge lets teachers turn creative writing into a game for students. Whether this app is used as for whole-class, small-group or individual activity, you'll immediately see the potential of this powerful writing tool. Children will be given a writing prompt and a countdown clock. The goal of this challenge is to have students incorporate the prompt into their story before the time is up. As soon as the timer finishes, they'll be given something new to add to their story.

Have you used iPads to promote creative writing in your classroom? Share your favorite activities and apps!

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Comments (8)Sign in or register to postSubscribe to comments via RSS

Jeanette Stickel's picture
Jeanette Stickel
I'm a speech therapist in public schools

I use Book Creator. My students love creating stories with this app. They can import images or take photos and then add text. The app costs $4.99. I often pair it with Photogene ($2.99) to crop images I obtain from the Internet - that allows the students to choose topics from animals to super heroes. They can easily drop in images in their ebook to accompany (and often inspire) their stories.

Jose Servin's picture

I believe one of the best tools we have as educators is each other. Being able to share our thoughts and discoveries allows us to expand our tool box. As I researched each app I discovered many positives that my students can learn from. As always the concern is how to let my students have access to these wonderful tools.

Keith Heggart's picture
Keith Heggart
High School Teacher from Sydney, Australia
Facilitator

There are some great suggestions here. I've got a few more that I use:

CELTX allows students to create scripts for plays and films.

PENZU is kind of like a free-writing journaling app. Very useful for the start of creative writing.

Max's picture
Max
Third Grade educator in Northern California

I love Story Dice as a conversation starter for creative writing.
Story Dice, by Thinkamingo, inc. (iOS)

Dr. Stephanie Hatten's picture
Dr. Stephanie Hatten
District Technology Specialist, Narrative Researcher, Mom of 4 teenagers,

I feel that apps that help students publish their writing are motivating as well such as Toontastic. Students are motivated to write stories using a story arc framework and then produce the story into a movie. Slide show apps like 30 hands where students can read and illustrate their work have the same benefits.

Dr. Stephanie Hatten's picture
Dr. Stephanie Hatten
District Technology Specialist, Narrative Researcher, Mom of 4 teenagers,

That is true, we always have to use free apps in our district. That is why I recommended Toontastic. We use the free version of this app to inspire students to write. They create their story and script and then get to make their own characters, settings, and record movement and their voices. I use the free version of Popplet to help them plan their story.

Monica Burns's picture
Monica Burns
Educator, Consultant, ADE , ClassTechTips.com
Blogger

Thanks everyone for sharing some more of your favorite apps!

I love Toontastic! There is a new free storytelling app that is definitely worth checking out - it's called Adobe Voice and I've written about why I think it is perfect for classrooms (and even made my own example!) http://wp.me/p42mcK-RG

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Monica Burns's picture
Monica Burns
Educator, Consultant, ADE , ClassTechTips.com
Blogger

Thanks everyone for sharing some more of your favorite apps!

I love Toontastic! There is a new free storytelling app that is definitely worth checking out - it's called Adobe Voice and I've written about why I think it is perfect for classrooms (and even made my own example!) http://wp.me/p42mcK-RG

(1)

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