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Saturday, September 7, 2013

Word Collages and Wriggle Writing Make Writing Fun and Engaging

Bringing creative ideas and images into the writing process can make class work and homework assignments fun and memorable for students.  I love teaching my students how to create word collages in the shape of an image.  In addition, I find that my students love wriggle writing, too, which allows them to write their stories and poems in a nonlinear fashion.

The Process of Creating a Word Collage:
By Erica Warren Copyright 2013
      1.     Provide your students a theme, such as their favorite animal, a friend, a self-portrait, an event, a concept and so forth.  
      2.     Share with them that they will be creating a word collage using phrases, sentences and/or words that they can type, write or cut out of magazines.
      3.     Indicate that they can place their words, phrases and sentences randomly, or they can organize them within a traced image on a piece of poster board.  Then, show them some examples.
      4.     As an added option, students can be encouraged to add small objects and designs.  

* The image to the right was done about the concept of learning.

The Process of Creating Wriggle Writing:
      1.     Provide your students a topic, such as a description of    
By Erica Warren Copyright 2013
themselves, their favorite animal, a friend, an event, and so forth.  This can be written as prose or as a poem.
      2.     Share with them that they will be taking a short writing piece or poem and rewriting it on the outline of an image, on a squiggle, inside a maze and so forth.
      3.     Share that they can trace an image or design on a piece of poster board and then write their story or poem on the outside of the image.  Then, show them some examples.

 * The image to the right illustrates wriggle writing on a squiggle.

Two Websites Make Word Collages and Wriggle Writing a Breeze
If time is an issue, you can let your students use one of these internet sites to help them create their word collage or wriggle writing projects. 

The online site, Tagxedo, makes wonderful word collages from your own file, a website, a blog and more.  It allows you to pick a shape, the color combinations and it will generate the image for you!  Your students can also get their creations placed on a T-shirts, mugs, bags and more. 

 * The image to the right one that I did about my dog Butter:

The online site, Festisite, allows you to paste your text into a text box and it will create a PDF file of your written work into a spiral, a heart, a wave pattern, or a maze. 

If you pull the PDF image into a word document you can then change the page background, and then take a screen shot to add color. 

 * The image to the right is one I did from a poem I wrote:

If you decide to use these fun methods, I would love to hear your thoughts!
Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning and Dyslexia Materials.  She is also the director of Learning to Learn and Go Dyslexia, in Ossining, NY.  To learn more about her products and services, you can go to https://godyslexia.com/www.goodsensorylearning.comwww.dyslexiamaterials.com & www.learningtolearn.biz  
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