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Short stories Site Learners can not only upload fictional short stories which can be read by their peers, but they can be encouraged to review and critique their peers' stories encouraging peer assessment. After reading each other's stories contributions they can choose their favourite story and reply with comments and responses to their peer. This not only enhances creative writing skills, but also expands critical thinking skills and fosters learner interaction.

Online Weekly Diary or Blog Learners can be encouraged to keep a weekly blog or fictional story diary online. This could describe their own daily experiences, or detail a fictional character's feelings or weekly life events. Blogs can also be used as leaning journals for learners to reflect on what they feel they have learnt during literacy classes.

Online Research Ideas Learners can be encouraged to use the internet to research a famous celebrity of their choice to find out five facts they did not know about that person. They can use this initial research to write a brief biography of their celebrity, attaching pictures and relevant visuals. They can upload these to a VLE site and read each other's posts commenting on whether they found the information interesting or if they like/dislike this celebrity. They could even create a fictional celebrity blog which other learners can 'follow' on line. More ICT literate students can work together to create web pages on their chosen topic focusing on an area of interest, current event or news story.

Soap Opera or Murder Mystery Wiki Soap operas or murder mysteries can be good creative writing projects for a collaborative class writing task, as most students are familiar with their structure from watching television. This can generate good discussion, developing understanding of a literary genre. Writing a murder mystery story or soap opera can be written collaboratively, the class deciding on the characters or murder victim, the location, motivations for the characters' actions etc. for their story. The students could either write in small groups or even produce the story on a wiki site, writing the unfolding plot line over the course of a week. Students can edit each other's writing, add on and insert new events into already, or add to the story sequentially.

Producing a class magazine/Facebook page/ website Literacy learners can often be encouraged to write creatively if they are creating a real product of some kind such as a class magazine, class website or Facebook page. Learners can be divided into groups to create a written article on a topic of particular interest to them; poems and short stories can be 'published'; learners who more proficient or artistic in the area of ICT or graphics can work on layout, visuals and pictures to enhance their peers' written pieces.

Collaborative class profiles can be created by each learner writing a brief autobiography of their life.

Conclusion The inspiration and ideas for the activities given in this article come from the trainee literacy and ESOL teachers at the University of Bolton, who endeavour to use imaginative and innovative teaching methods to engage and motivate their leaners to write creatively in collaboration with their peers.

In their post-lesson reflections trainees have described how collaborative creative writing tasks acted as a springboard to engage learners in interactive classroom activities, creating an enjoyable 'community' class atmosphere conducive to literacy language development and learning.


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