In my years as both a classroom teacher and now an educational researcher, I’ve always been a champion of the digital writing workshop approach. Why? Because it puts the emphasis where it should be—on the writing process rather than just the end product. This approach equips students with the versatile skills they need to navigate various writing genres.
But let’s be real, in today’s digital age, you can’t really talk about the writing process without acknowledging the role of technology. It’s not just a nice-to-have; it’s a must-have. So, in this post, I’m excited to share a curated list of stellar web tools that can enhance each stage of the writing journey, from brainstorming to publication.
We’ve organized these tools into specific categories like Digital Storytelling, Comic Strips, Mind Mapping, Story Starters, Writing Mechanics, Graphic Organizers, and Publishing Platforms, to help you find exactly what you need for your classroom.
And hey, if you’re more of a visual learner, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered with an infographic version of this post that you can download right from this page..
Online Writing Tools for Students
Here are some useful online writing tools for students:
There is an infographic version of this post which you can access and download from
I- Digital storytelling websites
3- Zimmer Twins
‘The Zimmer Twins website invites kids to create and share their own animated stories.’
It offers a great story creator tool that allows students to write their own stories and share them with others.
II- Comic Strips tools
1- Storyboard That
Create and narrate your stories using beautiful visuals and storyboards.
Provides you with a set of pre-designed characters, scenes and dialogue boxes to write your story. You need to log in to save your work.
3- Make Beliefs Comix
Create amazing comics using a wide variety of materials including characters, speech bubbles, props, backgrounds, objects and many more.
Create stunning comics using a drag and drop editor. They can choose from ‘fully posable characters to dynamic panels, props, and speech bubbles, every aspect of a comic can be controlled in an intuitive click-n-drag motion.’
III- Mind mappings tools
A good tool for creating visually attractive concept maps. No software download required and maps you create can be saved as an image. It also supports different sharing and collaborative features.
It offers various features including: recording notes in different formats with text, images and drawings; link notes to each other; export your final work as PDF or JPEG; supports several languages and many more.
Lets you ‘create unlimited mind maps for free, and store them in the cloud. Your mind maps are available everywhere, instantly, from any device.’
You can use Lucidchart to design concept maps, flowcharts and different types of diagrams. It also support collaborative features and works across several devices.
IV- Story starters
1- Scholastic Story Starters
Choose from four story starter themes: adventure, fantasy, sci-fi, and scrambler.
2- Cube Creator
Offers you tools to create different story genres including a biography, autobiography, mystery story…etc
3- The Story Starter
Randomly generates tons of story starters to write a short story, novel, play, movie script…etc
Offers practical tools to engage students creative writing.
V- Writing mechanics (Grammar and Style)
Helps you correct spelling mistakes and grammatical errors.
Helps you refine your style and improve language structure and lexicon.
It offers various tools to help students with their writing including Quill Grammar and Quill Proofreader.
‘OWL, which belongs to Purdue University, has a huge online library that features a wide variety of materials covering different writing-related topics such as grammar and mechanics, professional writing, APA and MLA formatting guides, resume writing, research and citation tips, subject-specific writings and many more.’
VI- Websites to publish students writing
1- Book creator
An excellent educational platform to help students create, published share their writing creations.
2- Google Sites
Share your writing in a website you create and publish on the web
3- Google Docs
Another great option to publish one’s writing in various formats including a web link.
Share your writing in the form of blogposts.
VII- Graphic Organizers
1- Plot Diagram
‘The Plot Diagram is an organizational tool focusing on a pyramid or triangular shape, which is used to map the events in a story. This mapping of plot structure allows readers and writers to visualize the key features of stories.’
2- Essay Map
‘This interactive graphic organizer helps students develop an outline that includes an introductory statement, main ideas they want to discuss or describe, supporting details, and a conclusion that summarizes the main ideas.’
3- Compare and Contrast Map
‘This interactive graphic organizer helps students develop an outline for one of three types of comparison essays: whole-to-whole, similarities-to-differences, or point-to-point.’
4- Venn Diagram
‘This interactive tool allows students to create Venn diagrams that contain two or three overlapping circles. Students identify and record concepts that can be placed in one of the circles or in the overlapping areas, allowing them to organize their information logically.’
5- Persuasion Map
‘The Persuasion Map is an interactive graphic organizer that enables students to map out their arguments for a persuasive essay or debate. Students begin by determining their goal or thesis. They then identify three reasons to support their argument, and three facts or examples to validate each reason.’
So there you have it—a guide to some of the most effective online writing tools that can supercharge your digital writing workshop. Whether you’re trying to make grammar lessons a bit more engaging or looking for creative ways to help your students organize their thoughts, these tools offer diverse solutions tailored to different stages of the writing process.
It’s all about making the journey from brainstorm to publication as seamless and instructive as possible. And let’s not forget, these aren’t just tools; they’re opportunities for your students to grow as thinkers and creators. So go ahead, explore these resources, and take your digital writing workshop to the next level.