Every student seems to have a different opinion about writing. Some love to get their thoughts on paper and could write for an entire period, thoughts flowing out full of creativity. Then there are students who struggle to get started, find any words, or even finish a sentence.
The tech tool that I am highlighting this month is Write. It is a simple writing tool that could be useful to all students from your struggling writers to those who can’t put down the pencil (or close the laptop, in this case).
To get started, students click on how long they wish to write. Choices include 1 minute, 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or 60 minutes. Hit enter to start and you are on your way. This is not a tool to use for editing, just writing and getting your thoughts on the “paper.”
Here is the catch: this tool has taken writing and gamified the challenge. If you stop typing for more than 5 seconds, all of your work disappears. This motivator keeps students writing. When your time is up, you can save the writing to edit later. Copy/paste your work into a Google doc, Word, or another program of your choice to complete the editing.
I tested out this tool myself and found it quite engaging. The hardest part for me was that I couldn’t go back and correct any spelling or spacing errors. That really tested my OCD! But I can see many benefits to using this tool during quick writes or even drafts at the beginning of the writing process.
If you have a student who is easily distracted, knowing they have 5 seconds before it disappears is a great motivator. This is also a fabulous tool to help students just focus on writing, not spelling or mechanics. Start each class with a quick 15 minute (or even 1 minute) write-up to get creative juices flowing. In content areas, consider having students reflect and demonstrate understanding by doing a quick 1-minute writing about the topics learned in class.