5 Awesome Excuses to Publish, Publish, Publish!

In an earlier post I wrote about publishing for a purpose, and giving students the opportunity to choose from a range of publishing tools/types to suit their writing. I have received some amazing feedback on Twitter and Facebook from my loyal PLN, and from my colleagues too. Here are some of the most talked about publishing resources I have discovered in the last few days.

Answergarden – Probably the best brainstorming, jigsaw tool that I have found all week. This site allows you to create a question for students (or staff!) and monitor their answers using the generated link. I love having this on the smartboard while small groups of students add to the brainstorm via a shared netbook. No sign-up, no obligation. Try one out here!

Flipbook – This tool is awesomely simple to use: create, export. It is as simple as that. Students can create a digital flipbook and export it as a GIF file to their email. I love the idea of this being integrated into a mixed-media publishing approach – e.g. students publish their flipbooks to their wiki or blog page.

Piktochart – An infographic creator tool that offers three basic templates and a video tour for students, which I think is a great starting point to introduce the topic. I am really excited to try this one out in the first week of Term 4, I’ll keep you posted!

Glogster – A big thank-you to Hana who posted this on the OpenEdToolbox Facebook page! I have not used Glogster in the classroom (yet!) but their .edu address offers simple templates which students can use to create an interactive poster including music, video, text and even data-attachments. Thanks again, Hana!

Sock Puppets – I owe another thank-you to Mary (Follow her @Mj0401Mary) who shared her experiences with this app in the comments on one of my posts. There are heaps of similar apps out there for iPad to animate and record, but I’m sharing this one because it looks great and I think Mary deserves a mention!


Search Cube – This one is a research tool, not a publishing tool. It is extremely cool though. My students love it! Give it a click!

I am also looking forward to posting about the shake-up of my classroom design and changes to my literacy block in Term 4, I’ll keep you posted!

Enjoy the last days of Term 3, Aussie teachers! To everyone else, keep up the good work!



Have you successfully used any publishing tools in your classroom that I haven’t discussed here? Share them in the comments section below.


6 Comments on “5 Awesome Excuses to Publish, Publish, Publish!”

  1. lifeoflottie says:

    ‘Storybird” is a hit in my class. A strong emphasis on visual literacy as the students choose artwork that they like and make up a story based on the pictures, creating a digital picture book. They have to order them, have had some great simple stories come out of this. Teachers can create class lists, so students get their own password but don’t need email. I love this web2.0 tool. Teachers can set class assignments, and it is private to the class. Also students can enter compositions within the site and comment on other peoples books. Teachers can also comment 🙂 I have used students books on the IWB and we have talked about editing and improving the story as a whole class before the student publishes it. It is publishing for the world. The only negative is you cannot download students work for free. A PDF costs $2, however if a student creates a fantastic book you can buy it in hardcover or softcover.

    Glogster is cool as well, however the EDU part has a charge, but I have used this in the classroom and set up an account under my name.

    Wallwisher kinda like the description for Answergarden but requires twitter length sticky notes. Mainly used for collaboration.

  2. Courtney says:

    I’ve used PrimaryPad and that worked well but that was in a secondary classroom for essay stuff, unsure how it would work in a prim classroom but might be worth checking out…

  3. Laura says:

    I use Kerpoof to explore narrative and creative publishing in my classroom. It allows the opportunity for the children to create their own stories and promotes visual literacy. You can also make movies or comic strips using ideas presented during your Writing Block. The children have even started to use this program at home and have printed their work to share in the classroom.

    Another great tool is Domino Animate. It is designed for years 3-6 but my 1/2’s used it with their buddies. Lots of creative animations and amazing story telling. It really brought the children’s writing ideas to life.

    I used this site to help me further explore creating and publishing Digital Stories online. http://ilearntechnology.com/?p=3190

    • teddymercer says:

      Thanks for your comments and for sharing those resources, Laura. I’m really looking forward to checking them out! I think visual literacy has so many wonderful advantages, namely drawing kids into the real writing that usually comes afterwards – a skill that we must continue to practice and provide purposeful feedback on.

      Great to see you getting so active on Twitter and Pinterest too, I’m looking forward to sharing more ideas with you in the future!



      • lmgodden says:

        I am learning lots and enjoying connecting with other people who also have so many wonderful ideas to share. Agree with you about using these resources to stimulate the writing process and provide engagement particularly in the area of Boys Education. Boys Education and engaging boys in Writing is a big focus for us at our school this year with Lynn Watts suggesting that if we engage boys then the girls will be engaged too. We used these resources along with implementing some of her lesson ideas to create a more meaningful writing experience for everyone in The Junior Level. Look forward to reading your next blog Teddy!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s