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Writing, Journaling, and Blogging Websites for Students

It's critical for students to learn to write clearly, communicate effectively, and express themselves. In today's classrooms, it's especially important that students practice these skills in authentic digital contexts that help them become good digital citizens who can contribute ethically, critically, and responsibly in online communities. Students, however, can find it hard to write what they mean, or they might find writing flat-out frustrating and boring. To help, we've curated some of the best student-friendly tools for writing, journaling, and blogging. These websites will help students get practice writing informally in settings that aren't too daunting. Since reading is key to writing, many of these websites also connect students with writing from other young people or articles aimed at classrooms. Look out for a few tools on this list that also help students collaborate with peers and share their work privately or publicly.

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QuadBlogging

Group blogging can help kids build teamwork and communication skills

Bottom line: QuadBlogging can help classrooms strengthen their blog readership while kids build communication, collaboration, and social media skills.

PrimaryPad

Peer editing a breeze with adequate teacher modeling

Bottom line: Valuable tool offers a fun and interactive way for kids to collaborate and practice writing.

Twiducate

Safe social network for classroom communication somewhat limited

Bottom line: Twiducate has a few limitations, but the site provides a secure system for teachers and students to share work and communicate.

BoomWriter

Collaborative writing platform has the potential to motivate

Bottom line: There's creativity possibility in this tool's unique brand of collaborative and competitive writing, but teachers should take care to keep things positive, especially for less confident students.

Edublogs

Customizable classroom blogs get students writing and collaborating

Bottom line: This rich and safe blogging tool makes it easy for teachers and students to extend the classroom into a wider community.

NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program

Wildly engaging contest turns students into novelists in 30 days

Bottom line: A thoughtful adaptation of the famous and fun grown-up novel writing contest, NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program is brimming with advice and encouragement as well as classroom support.

Weebly

Impressively easy-to-use website-creation tool

Bottom line: Helpfully walks students through each step of website creation, and teachers can control access and monitor progress.

Evernote

Impressive organizational tool has limitless uses

Bottom line: This free information-management tool can help kids become tech-savvy and learn to better organize their digital lives.

Penzu Classroom

Journaling site motivates student writers, has strong teacher tools

Bottom line: Penzu Classroom provides awesome teacher tools for managing writing assignments, while making it easy for kids to create and submit their work.

Postach.io

Seamlessly turn Evernote notes into blog posts with paid service

Bottom line: A solid, simple tool for turning notes in Evernote into polished-looking blog posts.

Bulb

Slick portfolio tool has cool features, limited feedback options

Bottom line: A neat tool for publishing online, possibly better suited to teacher content creation than student publishing.

Story Wars

Read, write, and vote on engaging collaborative storytelling site

Bottom line: A cool, competitive approach to online storytelling with a lot of learning potential -- just be aware of the iffy content and licensing risks.

Underlined

Major publisher's writing platform has some potential

Bottom line: If the community ever takes shape, this could be a good publishing platform, but there are better, less commercial options.

Youth Voices

Vibrant online community hosts authentic student writing

Bottom line: Supported student writing, collaboration, and communication make this a healthy space for kids to express themselves.

Teen Ink

Get kids writing, publishing, critiquing in this valuable network

Bottom line: Teens will find a wealth of information and many opportunities to further interest in writing and the creative arts.

Write the World

Global community helps young writers write, revise, think, and grow

Bottom line: With interest-based writing prompts and thoughtful feedback from peers and pros, this is a great tool for writing for authentic audiences.

Twitter

Smart classroom tool if used with care; priceless for PLNs

Bottom line: Twitter offers something for everyone: information, resources, and an easy way to connect with just about anyone.

WordPress.com

Solid blogging tool and content management system offers DIY blogs

Bottom line: This is a great tool to get kids blogging and creating online content.

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