Once Upon a Tool

Internet has been a great source for storytelling activities. Here are some of the web tools that you can use as story starters with your learners.

Piclits is web tool that presents you with a random picture and a long list of words such as nouns, adjectives, verbs and universals. You simply drag and drop the words onto the picture that describes it. When you finish, you can email, blog or share your story via different social networks. You can also choose freestyle which lets you write your own words on the picture. In the classroom, decide on the words that describe the picture and use it as a story starter.

PhotoPrompt is not a web tool but a blog where you can find creative writing prompts to motivate your students in writing! Simply, vote for a creative writing idea and let the creative ideas sparkle in your class.

StoryBird is a web tool where you can create your own collaborative story book using professional artists’ illustrations. You can give the first page of a Storybird story that contains a picture and the beginning of the story and ask your learners work in collaboratively to complete the story. 

WordTamer is an interactive virtual carnival where you can develop characters, setting or a plot for your story. In each step, you can print out your story or watch videos to help you as you develop your story. In the class, develop your stories together with your students.

OneWord is tool which gives you one word, as the name suggests, as a story starter. You try to write a story using the given word in 60 seconds. When you finish, you can publish your story and get a link to share it. Use this web tool as a story starter in the classroom.

BuildYourWildSelf lets you create your own wild self by attaching animal parts to a human body. When you finish, you can send the picture as an email. Use the wild safe you have created as a story starter. Ask questions to build your wild self’s character and let the story begin.

TheStoryStarter is a simple but an effective tool that generates story starters. Just click on the button and get the first line of the story. It can be “The grandma was walking in the bank.”. Write the rest in the the classroom.

Wordle is a famous web tool that generates “word clouds” from text that you provide. Copy and paste a story and ask learners to guess the story by asking them some guiding questions. Let them write the story, when they finish, give them the real text and compare their stories. Find the similarities and vote for the best version.

Voxopop is tool to create collaborative and threaded audio discussions that enable users to record their speaking for others to listen and respond to. Simply, record your voice with the first line of your story and ask your learners to leave their audio messages by building on each other’s sentences.

Scholastic Story Starters is an online machine that randomly generates a story starter for you. Choose your theme , grade and then spin the wheel. Your story starter can be “Write three wishes of a giant milkmaid whose tears turn things to stone.” The tool, then, lead you to start writing your story. You can download or print your story when you are done. Spin the wheel in class and get your story starter. Your learners are sure to come up with many creative stories using these prompts.

FiveCardFlickr is a website that shuffles Flickr photos and lets you build a story choosing 5 pictures and write a short story. When you are done, you can save it or share it with other. Use this website to choose your 5 pictures. The rest is in your students’ fingers. Let them come up with their own stories.

Tell a Tale is an iPad app provides you the first and the last sentence of a story with three pictures that you need to use as you tell your story. Get your iPad in class, touch the app and get your story starter and set your imagination free. 

Enjoy the stories!


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