Most of us write differently depending on what we are writing and, importantly, who we are writing for. While we regularly give students different writing tasks to develop their writing skills and to expose them to different genres, too often the only audience for their writing is their teacher. A recent Edutopia article discussed how giving your students an authentic audience for their work can increase motivation and creativity. The article made me think about ways that Clicker could be used to support students in writing for different audiences.
Sharing work with other classes is an easy way to give students a purpose for their writing. Get your students to create Clicker Books for younger children. They can create nonfiction books or write imaginative stories that can be saved to a digital reading corner. The speech support built into Clicker will make the stories accessible to the younger readers. To further strengthen the sense of audience, your students could read the books to the other children, either in person or using the sound recorder in Clicker.
Writing to school administrators or city officials can be a great way for students to connect with persuasive writing. Let students come up with topics that are relevant to them, such as making improvements to the school playground or adding a bike lane to city streets, and then get them to write to the appropriate school or community leaders. Our Persuasion Planner and Writing Frame provide support for students as they create their persuasive arguments.
Students’ own classmates can also be a highly motivating audience. Have them become class experts on a topic and then share their work with the rest of the class – through classroom displays or in oral presentations to the class. With Clicker Board, students can create digital posters to use as part of their presentations. For students who are less confident presenting to an audience, they can use a Talk Set to pre-record their presentation and then play the recordings to the class.
For an even larger audience, get your students to submit their work to national (and global) showcases and competitions such as our Summer Story Share. The Clicker Summer Story Share is an opportunity for elementary students to tell us a story that excites and inspires them. The theme for this year is: “If I could go anywhere…” To help write or tell their stories, students can have unlimited home access to Clicker throughout the summer break. We’ll be showcasing their wonderful stories online, for the whole world to enjoy!