Some odds and ends: How Students Think We Can Use Comics

I have a few posts here and there that I never got around to publishing before the school year ends and this is one of them. While we were using our closed ToonDoo comic space for Comic Strip Poetry, I asked my students in a survey for some suggestions on how I could integrate the use of comics into various projects throughout the year. I enjoyed reading their suggestions.

On a side note, I also came across this great resource for comics in the classroom (I think it was put together by my friend, Glen) with ComicLife software. Whether you use ComicLife or not, this site has a ton of ideas and possibilities, and includes some great links. Take a look.

And now, my students’ ideas:

  • Use it to design Quidditch logo (use shadows and shapes)
  • You could make a mystery poem; since there’s black and white slides.
  • making a comic book project
  • make story books
  • make an end of the year book.
  • We could do something on how to write a poem, because everyone seems to think that they’re so hard, even though they’re really not (especially if you use an online rhyming dictionary).
  • for plays
  • Have a writing period where we can show what we have made in ToonDoo.
  • Writing digital story books for next year
  • Next year you could have an adventure comic rather than an adventure story.
  • Science-mitosis
  • Social Studies-Egyptians
  • We could do a story on how your last year at Norris was.
  • We could use it in math and make toons to show how to do a certain equation.
  • To make your own wanted posters on toondoo about a criminal.
  • We could take any of the prompts we have wrote this year and make then into books. I also think it would be cool to make books about things we a learning to help us remember things.
  • I think it would be a good idea to use it in writing class but also maybe in literature class. I think it would be fun to use in literature.
  • I think you should do a mystery comic strip poem or on the Harris Burdick story. That would be cool. You should also introduce this site to the younger kids.
  • I think we can use this site for many different things for ex. you can probably use this for just an activity after MCAS and create a comic strip of what they thought of MCAS and if they thought it was easy or hard for them and that kind of stuff.
  • For songs.
  • Maybe we can make multiple strips and put them into a book so after each comic is done, it will be like one giant book.
  • We could use it to show our favorite part of Norris School.
  • We can use them with the comic book thing to create mini graphic novels and of course more poems and our freewrites in our notebooks.
  • We could use them to make stories (a short story writing prompt) into a funny comic that still shows the story.
  • I think we could make our own book- maybe a story about how our elementary years at Norris have been.
  • I think we could use the toon do site for making a book about our favorite thing that we did in writing. 🙂

Peace (in the frames),

It’s Just Another Music Monday …

Today, I offer up my second installment of my new Webcomic series about my life in music called Making Music, using ToonDoo as my composition site. I made some changes this week, as I started to use ToonDoo’s Traitr program to create my own comic version of myself, instead of using one of the prefab characters. It was fun but tricky to try to try to mirror myself as a comic character, particularly as the character needs to get older as the comic strips develop. The art element of comics has always been my weakest link (ie, see Boolean Squared).

And here is the Making Music book itself:

Anyway, here is this week’s Making Music comic. If you are looking at this in your RSS reader (hey, there!), then you most likely can’t see the comic, so here is a link to this week’s comic, entitled “Six Strings” in which my mom tried her hand at guitar. And here is a link to a ToonDoo book that I am creating with the comics.

Peace (on the funny pages),

Making Music: A New Webcomic Adventure

With Boolean Squared winding down for the year (the comic will end temporarily next week, but I will reflect more on that project on another day), I have been interested in creating a series of comics about my life in music (so far).
So, I am turning to ToonDoo to create a series of comics and see how it goes. I’ll be putting the comics in a ToonDoo ebook as I go along. I hope you enjoy them. I’ll be posting the comics — called Making Music — on Mondays, to keep the alliterative theme going.

Peace (in comics),

Your Days in Haiku as Comic Book Collection

Some of you know I sing the praises of ToonDoo regularly. I find it easy to use, with a wealth of resources. And I had my students do Comic Strip Poetry recently, so it made sense to take all of the wonderful Day in a Haiku submissions and use ToonDoo to create a comic book of your words. I hope you enjoy it and that I was respectful to your ideas (I worried about the tone of the comics for some of the poems).
Here you go:
object width=”425″ height=”344″>

direct link to the comic book is here.
Peace (in frames),

Boolean Squared versus Google Squared

So, Google has a new search tool called Google Squared, which presents search information in a grid formation of related concepts. Given its name, I thought it would be fair to square off (excuse the word pun) the search engine with my webcomic, Boolean Squared.

Alas, my comic didn’t even show. Too many math references to Boolean Logic, I guess.

Here is one of this week’s comics:

Peace (in the engine),

The Comic Protest of the Five PP Essay

This week begins a series in my Boolean Squared webcomic about the Five Paragraph Essay and its relevance for young writers. In a world of communication and connectiveness and authentic writing for real global audiences, isn’t it worth a wonder about why we still teach this style of rote form writing? (Of course, I know why – organization, development of thought, etc).

You can read the comics as they are published at the local newspaper or grab the RSS feed or go to my homesite of Boolean Squared for all the comics from this year. I have about one more month of comics and then I will end Boolean for the school year. I am not sure about the future, but that is fodder for another post soon.

Peace (in protest),


ToonDoo Comics for Education

ToonDoo - the online comic cartoon strip creator!I have written about the ToonDoo comic site before, but they are now experimenting with a beta version for students. It is a closed-off classroom site and this morning, I got my administrative information and I am in the process of setting things up for my students to use. I imagine it will be a fee-based system later, but I love the many aspects of ToonDoo and see many possibilities.

Here is my classroom ToonDoo site — — and as I progress with it, I will report out on how it is going.

One of the things I like about ToonDoo, besides its simplicity, is that it is more than just a comic creation site. You can alter photographs, create your own crop of characters, re-edit your comic (or a friend’s comic), and think about art and writing together in new ways. ToonDoo is not the only site doing this, of course, so you may want to explore around a bit. My complaint with ToonDoo has always been that I did not want kids to be able to search around the public forums for adult comics (not that I ever found anything inappropriate, but still …) and this walled-off community for just the classroom seems like a good answer.


Peace (on the virtual funny page),

Want to learn Linux? Read the comics.

Linux is the open source software platform that continues to make inroads in the computing worlds. And many schools are now considering it as a no-cost alternative to Windows or Apple, too.

A site called Intrawebz (I am not sure if that is name of the publisher or the name of the site) has apparently put together some comics that explain the Linux operating system and the first issue about Ubuntu is available as a free ebook download. The second edition costs a few bucks, but there seems to be a way to bulk order for the classroom at some discount.

I am hoping to review the books for The Graphic Classroom in the future, but if you interest is piqued, go download the ebook yourself.

Peace (in comics),