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Using iPads for writing instruction can be
intimidating. Just remember that you don’t have to do all of
it at once. Choose one app or one step in the writing process
with which to begin your infusion of technology. Of the apps
I experimented with, these are the ones I found to be the
Dice is a simple app that can be used to come up
with topics for all ages, even the youngest kids who can’t read
yet, since it’s all in pictures. Simply select the number of
die you would like to have showing, shake, and roll. Kids
could each make a story using the same die rolls, and then could
vote on which had the best character, plot, overall story, etc.
Shake-a-phrase has three
parts: Shake It!, Story Starter, and Quiz Me! Shake It!
generates silly, random sentences where you can tap words for
definitions. Story Starter gives a ‘what if…’, ‘Imagine
if…’, ‘What would happen if…’ sentence that would get students
writing. Quiz Me! gives a silly sentence and asks the
students to tap a certain part of speech (nouns, verbs, adjectives,
prepositions, or conjunctions). You can choose from all or
just one to differentiate.
Idea Sketch allows you to
mind map your writing with curved lines and Idea Sketch allows you
to mind map your writing with curved lines and different colors.
It allows you to rearrange them, too. You can only
share by sending to email, FB, or to your camera roll (which would
allow you to save it for later projection or viewing on the same
Lite is another version of graphic organizer
that allows mindmapping. Export features include emailing as
a .pdf or .jpeg, or it can be saved as a jped on the iPad.
iBrainstorm looks like
post-it notes on a Masonite board. You can change the color
of the Post-it squares and you can draw on the board with different
colored markers. Exporting options are sending in an email
and saving to photos. Corkulous
is similar to iBrainstorm. You cannot write on the
board, but there are a lot of different shapes that can be
attached, and you can change the color of the post-it notes.
Just use the file drawer at the bottom of the page. In Part 2, I’ll go over apps which are good for
making the ‘Sloppy Copy’ and for editing. In the meantime,
try one or two of these this week. No one expects you to
adopt all of these at once (although you are more than welcome
to!), but the only way you will become comfortable and familiar
with them is to play with them on your own and use them with the