The best gift you can give your child is the power of words to express themselves in all forms of creativity, especially through writing. Creative writing is such a beautiful expression of the imagination, and learning this skill at an early age enhances the child’s ability to clearly communicate in powerful ways.
Scribblitt, which is an online website designed to let your child become the author by creating either a hardcover book or comic/graphic novel, will surely have the creative sparks flying. This program is complete in itself and really easy to use. The child has the ability to write and illustrate their very own book or novel, with images created from the website or images that can be uploaded to the webpage. Designing a 17-page—including cover—8”x8” hardcover book is $24.99 or a 24-page soft cover comic/graphic novel which is $16.99. There are also options to design notecards and notepads using the child’s creative design for an additional cost.
After deciding either to create a hardcover book or softcover novel, getting started is quite easy. The child will then decide on a title and begin writing the story they have created, including adding pages with illustrations, creating chapters and chapter titles, designing a front and back cover page, author’s name with information, and always making sure to save the information when finished. The author will also decide how they want the story displayed with fonts, sizes, underlining, italicizing, or using bold to emphasize certain words, phrases, or sentences. If there is a little apprehension with getting the creative sparks flowing, there is a page called story starters, which lets the child click on a topic and which gives them a writing prompt. There are also some additional resources on the website that helps create the story. Clicking on the planning tool is a great way to formulate a plan of action by creating the characters, setting, main idea, and mapping it all out and then writing it. Another resource tool will teach you how to write the story with formulating the character, problem, and journey. There are also additional help pages for those needing guidance in expression of characters saying something, the five-senses approach with details, and a six-step guide to writing a story from the beginning to end.
Incorporating Scribblitt into your creative writing or language arts curriculum would be an amazing way to either introduce creative expression to the student or let them pursue a natural ability already there. Designing their own book or novel is a great way to stimulate a child who is struggling with creativity by providing ownership of written words. So many positive character traits are enhanced, such as confidence, self-esteem, pride, the ability of using one’s imagination, and expression of feelings. Using Scribblitt will also enhance and reinforce their computer skills, which are quite important by today’s school standards. This program works best for students ages 8-12 or 3rd grade to middle school but certainly could be modified for younger or older students. This program incorporates all types of learners, and the only tool required to use Scribblitt is a computer, which can easily be adapted to school or home use.
My 5th grader so enjoyed creating his own hardcover book and approached this creative expression with much excitement. The best part about using Scribblitt was how user friendly the program was, and anyone has the ability to learn the program in minutes. The story starter topic and prompt were extremely helpful with getting our imagination engaged. Once the creativity started flowing, it became easier to continue creating our story, adding to, changing, and taking the story in any direction we decided. The illustrations were a little limited on what we could add to our story, as there is not an endless amount of objects or backgrounds, and we had to make do with what was provided on the website. We were highly satisfied as to the results of the book we created in the end.
Creating our own hardcover book was such an out-of-the-box way to approach learning, and I am thankful we had the opportunity to do so. Not all approaches to learning have to be the same or from a textbook standard but, in some regard, can be taught in ways that are exciting, different, and even fun. Sometimes the best way to reinforce an important concept, such as creative writing, is by learning with a hands-on approach.
-Product review by Pam Havens, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine®, LLC, September 2017