Welcome to Website Wednesday! This is one of my "oldie but goodie" sites. I have used Scholastic Story Starters for YEARS. I can't wait to share this one with you!
When you go to this site, you are greeted by a page that allows students to choose their genre, adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, or scrambler (random computer choice!). Upon selection, students will go to a page where they can put in their name (encourage first name ONLY) and choose a grade level. This will change the complexity of the writing pieces - letters, lists, story, news article, etc. - and topics. I like to think there is a lot of differentiation that can happen here. I let more experienced writers go higher and more emergent writers go lower.
They then go to the spinner! This is where they will spin for a story. The first box will give the type of writing. I just spun and got "Write a short poem about". The second box is an adjective or description. Mine says, "fierce". Next is the character, and mine is "servant". Lastly is a situation, which mine is "who has the strength of 500 people". My topic would be "Write a short poem about a fierce servant who has the strength of 500 people". If my writer did not want to do a poem, I can press the button under that box to change it. I did this and got..."Write a short legend about...".
Students then decide which paper would be best for this project, notebook paper, letter, newspaper, or postcard. They can choose to include a drawing. Then they get started. Students can save these pieces, but they cannot come back to edit them.
How Can I Use It?
*Free write day - Let them just create!
*After finishing a piece, allow them to do this until everyone is finished.
*Partner writing - This is a great way for students to collaborate on their writing.
*Many times I have them write and give them a chance to share with each other. They like to show these stories off to each other.
*Class collaboration story - Do one together! There is a Teacher's Guide in the right corner.
*When you have a sub, this can be an easy and fun way to still have writing.
What I Have Learned About this Site
HAVE FUN! The kids love this!
Fifth grade teacher in a 1:1 iPad classroom, sharing my journey with technology in the classroom