Saturday, March 28, 2015

Programs that can encourage your students to write

Practice makes perfect. In order to improve your writing, you need to write. And luckily, today we teachers have more tools at our disposal than in the past to try to coax that writing our of our students. There are LOTS of digital options to use (Googledocs, and CNN iReports, which I have written about here, before) but it is really exciting to get your students to write a book! This can be done on any level (even the  most basic) of language acquisition. Your students can write books that are based on pictures, or they can write books that have more text in them. 

One of the platforms I was aware of before is called Flipsnack, where you can upload files that are written in Word, saved in PDF and uploaded. 

Another option which I discovered more recently, is called OurBoox. It is an Israeli-based platform which claims to be the simplest platform for uploading and sharing books. You can read more about them in their "About" section. In order to make a book with OurBoox, you do not need to use PDF files. You can just have your students write their stories in Word or Googledocs, gather the photographs or graphics they want to use (be sure they have the rights to use the graphics and do not infringe upon others' copyrights) and then easily upload and publish them on OurBoox. 

As a counselor for Digital Pedagogy for teaching languages, I have made a tutorial that shows just how easy it is to make a digital book. The tutorial is in Hebrew. 

Have you ever had your students sharpen their writing skills by producing a digital book? What do you think of the idea? If you DO experiment with this idea, please fill out the feedback form so I know how it goes!

I hope you find this adds to your digital language teaching toolbox!

Digitally yours, 

P.S. If you have any questions about the OurBoox platform , Mel Rosenberg is happy to provide support (in English or in Hebrew). Just drop him a line:

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