The Parent-Teacher-Child Connection: Boomwriters

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Boomwriters

Looking for a new way to energize your budding authors into submission? (Hah - I actually planned that pun for this post!)  Started in 2010, Boomwriter is an engaging creative writing website that has students reading, writing, and assessing content in ways they’ve probably never done before. 
Here's how it works:
  1. The teacher selects or produces his or her own story start, and the students let their imagination and writing skills take over.
  2. One chapter at a time, the students write, read, and then vote on the submissions they like the most. The winning chapter is then added to the story and the process continues.
  3. The teacher determines the total number of chapters to be completed, and when the competition is over a new book is ready to be published
In Bloom’s Taxonomy of cognition, the highest levels of thinking and learning are “Creating” and “Evaluating.” BoomWriter guides students to do both... and have fun in the process!

Teachers also have the option of providing instruction for students in the form of “Guiding Notes” prior to the creation of each new chapter.

BoomWriter is standards-based and can be used for “in action” practice of specific genres (from Science Fiction to Drama), and even for test preparation: collaboratively creating a top-scoring essay.

NOTE TO PARENTS AND HOME-SCHOOLERS: BoomWriter is extremely safe for your children. The site is password protected for teachers and students, and only the teacher is able to have direct communication with the students (for the purpose of instruction). Students’ individual identities are protected by the avatar that they create, and this allows them to have a persona without compromising their identity. All student chapter submissions are screened by the teacher before being submitted for the peer voting process.

If I were still teaching 7th grade language arts, I'd definitely use this program to motivate my students.

And did I mention this is a FREE website?  They make their money by selling the books that kids create.  What fun!  I can also see this being used in other classrooms to satisfy the writing across the curriculum requirement.  The possibilities are endless!

Watch the video of real teachers using this program with real students: 


Happy Teaching!

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