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66 Writing Tools for the 21st Century Classroom

Posted by on January 30, 2015

Here’re a wide variety of writing tools for students. Some practice good habits, others offer options for writing requirements. See what works for you:writing

  1. Character Trading Cards
  2. Context Clues Millionaire
  3. Friendly Letter Maker
  4. Garfield teaches Writing Skills
  5. Identify the Main Idea
  6. Letter Generator
  7. Main Idea Battleship
  8. Make another story
  9. Monster Project
  10. Newspapers, posters, comics—learn to create
  11. Using a table of contents
  12. Videos—using Sock Puppets (iPads)
  13. Writing games


  1. Bloggerblog
  2. Class Blogs
  3. Edublog
  4. Kidblog
  5. WordPress


  1.–simple to use, no log-in, free–but a bit quirky (IMHO)mindmap
  2. Inspiration–as an online tool or an app
  3. Mind42–online, free
  4. MindMaple—free or fee
  5. MindMeister–free trial for education
  6. Pearltrees
  7. Popplet—for iPads and the web
  8. Spicy Nodes
  9. SpiderScribe–add text, pictures, files; free sign-up,


  1. Comic creator–Arthur
  2. Comic Creator–Boy’s Life
  3. Comic creator–Bubblr
  4. Comic creator–Garfield
  5. Comic creator–ReadWriteThink
  6. Comics, newspapers, posters—learn to create
  7. Make Believe Comix
  8. Pixton–comic creator created specifically for schools
  9. Toondoo–for olders, professional look, but intuitive for students
  10. Writing with comics


  1. Tackk–picture and text
  2. Thinglink–creative approach–click hotspots to get topical text–available to <13 yo, no email required


  1. Evernotedigital note-taking
  2. Notability–quickly take text, draw images, record sounds, all with a few clicks
  3. NoodleTool–3-step note-taking process that helps students takes notes while they learn the process
  4. Note-ledge–app for note-taking
  5. Penzu–create a private online journal


  1. Hemingway App--paste your writing in; it highlights areas of improvement

Storiesdigital storytelling

  1. 30 Hands–digital storytelling app
  2. Bookr—create stories from photos
  3. Create a story
  4. Google Storybuilder (see how-to video here)
  5. Little Bird Tales–upload drawings, add student voice to them–K, 1 best
  6. StoryBird—-storytelling with art–beautiful
  7. StoryJumper–build a book

Social MediaFake Tweets

  1. Fake headline
  2. Fake IPhone Text
  3. Fakebook–fake FB
  4. IFakeText–fake SMS text


  1. Storyboard That–intuitive interface for creating a ‘story’–or a sequence of events


  1. Spelling practice—use with spelling words
  2. TagCrowd
  3. Visuwords
  4. Vocabulary Fun
  5. Word Central—from Merriam
  6. Words in Context

Lesson Plans (fee)

Quick Stories in Class

Digital Quick Writes in Your Class

Write an Ebook Lesson Plan

Common Core Lesson Plans (fee)

By strand

More about the 21st Century classroom:

What’s Tomorrow’s Student Look Like

7 Education Trends You Don’t Want to Miss

What’s the Classroom of the Future Look Like?

Common Core and Writing

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor/author of dozens of tech ed resources including a K-8 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and dozens of books on how to integrate technology into education. She is webmaster for six blogs, CSG Master Teacher, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing Teachers, CAEP reviewer, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, a tech ed columnist for, and a weekly contributor to TeachHUB. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.

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