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Poetry Idea Machine

What it is: April is national poetry month, the Poetry Idea Machine is sure to help you infuse your classroom with some inspired poetry writing.  Students learn about different kinds of poetry by selecting from Haiku, Limerick, Cinquain, or Free Verse.  The Poetry Idea Machine takes students through the steps of making each type of poetry.   The Poetry Idea Machine makes an excellent introduction to types of poetry and will have your students writing their own in no time.   How to integrate Poetry Idea Machine into the classroom: The Poetry Idea Machine does a fantastic job of introducing students to different kinds of poetry.  After students learn about the poetry, they have a chance to create their own poem with the Poetry Idea Machine interactive.  In my classroom, I use the Poetry Idea Machine with the  whole class using the interactive whiteboard or projector.  I invite students up to create their own poems as we talk through the process.  Choose one type of poetry each week so that students have an opportunity to practice writing the poems.  During the week, give your students time to write their poems, allowing them access to the Poetry Idea Machine on classroom computers as an idea center.  Let students work in small groups to create unique poems using the Poetry Idea Machine. Tips: Read poems by Jack Prelutsky, Karla Kuskin, and Jean Marzollo for inspiration.  Ask students to determine which type of poem each is based on what they have learned with the Idea Machine. Please leave a comment and share how you are using the Poetry Idea Machine in your classroom.

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Piki Kids Comic Creator

Posted by admin | Posted in Art, Character Education, Fun & Games, History, Language Arts, Math, Middle/High School, Phonics, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Social Studies, Websites | Posted on 06-10-2008

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What it is:  Piki Kids Comic Creator is an online comic creator for students.  Students can upload pictures from their computers, or search Flickr for images to use in their comic strip.  The comics are very flexible so students can make them uniquely their own.  Students can choose the number of panels, the look of the panels, color choices, and much more.  When students are finished creating their online Piki Kids comic, they can save them to a gallery, or print out.


How to integrate Piki Kids Comic Creator into the classroom:  Students love reading comics, there is something about the interaction with a comic that makes even struggling readers willing to try.  I find that the same is true with writing.  Many kids who struggle to write would dread writing out a story or series of events after reading a book.  But, introduce a comic and suddenly those kids who don’t like writing are writing full stories.  Piki Kids Comic Creator is the perfect way to get your students writing about anything.  Studying dinosaurs?  Have the kids find some clip art of dinosaurs that they can upload to Piki Kids and have them write about what they are learning comic book style.  Learning about the Civil War?  Have the students retell the story as a comic strip.  You will see creativity that you didn’t know your students possessed!  Comic strips are also an excellent place for students to “write” a book report after finishing a book.  Comics can be used in science to show processes (like plant cycle…give those plants a voice!)  Comics can be used in math for students to create word problems for fellow classmates to solve.  Use comics in character education, after teaching a lesson, students can illustrate, comic-style, what that might look like.  From the technology side of things, Piki Kids Comic Creator is a great place to teach kids skills like uploading to a website, searching flickr for pictures, changing font, size, and color.  


Tips:  Piki Kids Comic Creator is an excellent tool.  Be aware that there are adwords on the website.  I use these as an opportunity to help my student spot advertisements and talk about why sites include ads on websites.  Everything can be a learning experience!


Leave a comment and tell us how you are using Piki Kids Comic Creator in your classroom.

Comments (2)

Hi there,

Comics are truly a great tool for educators. You seem to have captured various ways in which they can be used in the classroom!

You could also check out http://www.toondoo.com, an easy-to-use comic strip creator with loads of inbuilt characters. ToonDoo is currently being used by educators from all over the world.

Have fun teaching and learning with comics!

Hi! I just found your blog and after reading post after post, I’m amazed at all of the great resources you have shared! I too am a technology teacher and many of these I have not heard of. I am going to be teaching a technology enrichment class and I love the Piki Kids Comic Creator. I can’t wait to show it to my kids, they are going to have a blast!

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