15 Great Tools to Publish Student Writing

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Why do kids give their best when playing baseball? It isn’t a test, and nobody is going to invite them to join the Major League only because they performed well in one game.

Why do children love devoting themselves to a baseball game, even though, it is not being assessed?

Simple, because everybody is watching them play. They play for the cheers, shouts and the boos. Children play to show the world, that they are as good as everybody else.

What makes baseball more interesting than writing an essay?

Most of the students start studies with enthusiasm. But sooner or later, students figure out the tricks.

They find out the tricks to earn an easy A. Once this goal is accomplished, they only write what teacher appreciates. Those who cannot learn the trick, they detest the assignments.

Here is an interesting article exploring why students hate writing.

As a passionate educator, you should earnestly look into publishing student writing. However, publishing isn’t as easy as sticking an assignment on a notice board.

Here is an article exploring why schools avoid publishing student writing

How do you make your student’ writing available to the world in a readable, shareable and attractive format?

The reason that publishing is one of the least used aspects of the writing process in schools is that the schools lack an easy and effective way of publishing student writing.

The Internet can fill that void.

 

Why to share student writing?

  • Publishing puts emphasis on a completed assignment, and creating a quality assignment.

  • It makes writing a social process – students exchange ideas among themselves, and with readers around the world.

  • Best part is feedback. Feedback from readers like authors, or a teacher from another school or a student away in Okinawa can help develop creativity and text organization.

 

Earlier, even, I never used the Internet, for anything except for reading mails, or searching for information on Google and Wiki.

Once I realized that even students can share their creativity, their stories and songs with the world, it changed my prospective towards Internet.

To say that the Internet is Google or Wikipedia is being ignorant.

On further investigation, I realized, ‘how to share student writing’ is a very limited use of vocabulary to define the available tools.

The encouragement that publishing student writing offers is phenomenal.

It boosts student confidence, rewards their interest, and fosters a positive attitude towards literature and writing. Publishing online does not mean posting your written assignment on a blog page.

It can transform broader experience than merely typing and sharing articles.

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How can technology enhance student creativity:

  1. Students can create animated stories; for those who have handwriting, spelling, or fine-motor difficulties, or need visual support for building ideas.

  2. They can create comic books from photos and images. It is best for students who prefer to put themselves in the story, and for hesitant writers.

  3. Students can compose storybooks based on a collection of original artworks; best for students who are reluctant writers, and are fearful of composing whole story themselves, or need visual-support.

  4. Create multimedia collages; helpful for students who are creative learners or need to learn to organize primary sources.

  5. Create posters; useful for students who have an artistic flair.

  6. Students can also enter writing contests; best for students who need specific goals.

  7. Write and manage Newsletters.

  8. They can create complete books with cover, and even get them printed.

  9. Join web-based projects encouraging them to take part in large-scale projects

A major problem for teachers is how to manage students write on computers when there is a crunch of resources at schools.

Today, apps are available for students to write and publish their assignments directly from their mobile-phones.

There are a lot of tools that teachers can use to enhance the value of student writing, and share them with their class, parents, the school, and the world.

In this article, we share a list of 15 free internet resources to help teachers publish student writing.

This list is not a list of blogs, but they are resources to express, and share student creativity.

They provide features to encourage writing and to publish student writing. The following list is classified in two sections, creating content and sharing content.

How to create books, magazines, posters, presentations and newsletters:

Following tools allow students to use their imagination, and reproduce their thoughts digitally. Trust me, online submissions don’t have to be boring, long thousand word document files.

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Students can create attractive flipbooks, and add beautiful pictures to their assignments.

Some of the featured tools are perfect for creating picture-books, magazines, audio, and video presentations.

All the applications listed below have a free service.

Teacher can use them for classroom purposes without making any expenses. Although several of these tools, do require signing in order to publish a book.

 

  1. Flipsnack:

FlipSnack is an all-that-you-need tool for publishing captivating online-magazines, and transforming your pdf-files into online flip-books.

It also allows you to convert images into digital books with professional looks.

They have several templates available for book creations, with adjustable settings. It works across all digital platforms, and is easy to use.

Teacher can use the free version to convert student writing into beautiful flipbooks.

  1. Tikatok:

It is a special website dedicated only for school book projects. It is a Pearson product.

Students can create E-books using pictures and words. They also have an assortment of free templates which students can use to create E-books.

Tikatok is easy to use, and even elementary-level student can use it with little guidance. The templates available are best suited for children of K6 and below.

TikaTok Classroom Book Publishing

  1. Mixbook:

Mixbook is useful to make customizable photo books, cards, and calendars on the web.

Since it does not enforce any kind of templates on users, students have the full liberty to create as they want.

You can allot individual projects or encourage collaborative projects. Students can share their thoughts using photo-books, or create pictorial assignments, or make picture cards.

  1. ePub Bud:

ePub Bud too allows students to create e-books for free.

Children can easily create their own books online, and download them. The process is pretty easy and even elementary-level students can use it.

The only issue is that the website is not advertisement free. Even so, it is a good tool for students who can not afford high speed connections.

Students can use ePub Bud to create assignment at home, and publish them online.

 

 

Captain Ice by Devon Shapiro Epub

  1. Lulu:

Lulu has started with their own online-book creation tool for students and teachers.

It is an easy-to-use tool. Students can create online books on their website, or teachers can upload them in PDF format.

It also gives teachers an option of selecting individual assignments, and allotting collaborative projects, like creating class-books.

It too is a free service, although hard copies of the books are chargeable.

 

  1. Penzu:

Penze is a tool for creating, publishing and maintaining online journals. Students can share their journal entry with the class, and request for comments.

As a teacher you can ask students to create and maintain a daily study-log. Some students prefer to use Penzu as an online notebook.

The free version allows only one journal per person, every student has to create his or her own account.

Penzu

  1. Slideshare:

It is one of the most famous applications for sharing presentations and infographic blogs on the web.

Students can access more than 15 million presentations available on Slideshare and learn from them.

To upload presentations, students have to register with Slideshare. They can also create a presentation on slideshare by registering with Haikudeck(Slideshare).

Teachers can easily embed these presentations on your teacher-website, or shared them on Twitter or Facebook.

 

  1. Google Docs:

Google Docs links with every available ‘Google’ product online.

Students can create personal projects or invite users to collaborate on a single assignment. They can share the result publicly by distributing ‘the link’ to the presentation.

Teachers can access student assignments from their personal Google account; they can leave notes, modify, add users, and share them publicly.

slideshare

  1. Empressr:

Empressr is an Internet-based storytelling tool that allows you to create and share media presentations online.

It is a web-based application that works very much like Microsoft power-point.

Students can add photos, video, audio their power-point projects. They can also invite visitors to judge their creativity by sharing the embedded code.

 

  1. Storybird:

Storybird is another storytelling tool that allows students to create storybooks. They have a good collection of artworks provided by various artists.

Teachers can stimulate imagination into his class by assigning them a group of pictures.

Students can select the one they find interesting, frame a story around them, and add text to the pictures.

  • Storybird

 

How to publish student writing:

When a student knows that the teacher is the only one who is going to judge his penmanship, he writes for the teachers.

The feedback that teacher gives decides the direction of his next assignment, and also, the direction of his life takes.

Feedback is a necessary components of every successful ELA classroom.

However, when they publish their writing on the web for the world to read, else allow the class to peek into their creation, the value and the effect of the feedback multiplies.

Students can publish their finished assignments using the following tools. There are no charges for publishing, or sharing of books.

 

  1. Calameo:

Students can use it to publish digital magazines, interactive-publications, and online documents.

It also allows conversion of PDF documents to html, giving us a prospect of modifying even old assignments into publishable formats.

Although the free version does add ads to the publication, but I found them to be a minor distraction.

 

  1. Scribd:

Students can use it to publish e-books, and share assignment.

It is a well-known platform for accessing online documents, ensuring high visibility to student writing.

The free version allows you to publish a book without any charges.

For Mac OS, Scribd provides non-flash support, but for other OS, you need flash on the computers.

bookrix

  1. Bookrix:

Bookrix allows students to publish their books using their services at no cost.

The best part is it that it also lists their books in all the major e-book stores. Their books are on epub formats, which is usable on almost all the tablets and phones.

Bookrix also hosts a community for authors and readers.

  1. Author Stream:

This website is best suited for sharing power-point presentations. Students can add video, audio, and even use animation on their presentations.

They can import their photographs and documents directly from flicker, Google-drive and other online platforms.

Best part is students can collaborate on their projects, and choose to share, either privately or publicly.

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  1. Issuu:

Issuu is another user-friendly tool for reading and publishing online-books. To publish student writing, you only have to upload their assignments in PDF format and the software modifies them into easy-to-use flipbooks.

Readers can flip through the book seamlessly on a dedicated web page or in a small widget.Once published, you can share their flipbooks with others.

This website is easy to use, and the final results are astonishing.

There is nothing much gratifying for a student than to see his writing published, and appreciated by others. This is highly inspiring and is a strong motivation for them to create more and work harder.

Visualize the happiness of your student, would he be to share his school assignment with his parents in a well-ordered online format.

Do you use technology in your classroom? Do your students submit their writing online? Which tools do you prefer? Please share with us. We’d love to know.

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