Common Sense


10 Best ELA Tools for High School

Analytical skills come to the forefront in high school ELA -- boosting independent and informed thoughts, encouraging appreciation for literature, and allowing for creative self-expression through writing and discussion. High school students need tools that challenge them to dig into text and media for deeper meaning, produce college-ready writing, and improve their organization skills. These 10 great ELA apps and websites accentuate all these areas and more, equipping high school students with the communication skills they'll need to become critical citizens and to succeed in college, careers, and life.

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Absorbing daily news stories offer kids just-right learning content

Bottom line: Up-to-date, high-interest articles meet students right at their level: Use this robust tool to bolster students' nonfiction reading practice.


Smart writing platform places focus on feedback and revision

Bottom line: While there's some room for improvement, this tool is rock-solid pedagogically and can be the engine of your classroom's writing process.


Well-structured lessons encourage deep analysis, thoughtful writing

Bottom line: This is a ready-to-go, research-backed resource that focuses intently on CCSS-aligned and AP-level critical reading and writing skills.


Feature-rich literacy resource offers superb support for readers

Bottom line: Access a hefty collection of reliable, ready-to-print, leveled passages that allow you to tailor lessons, assign online reading, and track progress.

Actively Learn

Empowering social ereader keeps kids actively, independently engaged

Bottom line: Far beyond the average ereader, this tool helps students connect and stay engaged while teachers easily measure progress.


Helpful tips support the writing process and build confidence

Bottom line: A helpful site to check grammar and plagiarism, and a good tool for understanding errors and how to fix them.


Bring real-world stories from public radio into the classroom

Bottom line: A fantastic resource that brings both historical and current event public radio stories into the classroom.


Superb ELA resource has comprehensive coverage, tons of supports

Bottom line: StudySync offers a complete core literacy program for secondary schools, making it easy to recommend, especially for teachers new to digital platforms.


Nifty add-on enables audio and text feedback in Google Docs

Bottom line: If your classroom relies a lot on Google Docs, this might just be the feedback tool you're looking for.

Walden, a game

Thoughtfully designed game illuminates Thoreau's writing, philosophy

Bottom line: It's rare to be so moved and permanently transformed by a work of art; that this game manages to (re)create these experiences is a triumph.

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