If you're a teacher and you're really interested in getting your kids to love to write and to deeply understand math concepts, you have to come to terms with the fact that there are no quick fixes.
I'm a writer, so let's go there...
If I want my kids to love to write, I have to be an authentic model of what that looks like. I have to make my writing life visible to kids. They need to see my writer's notebook:
They need to see inside, too, and see that it's messy and not perfect. I need to tell them about my writing process and my writing preferences - how I like to keep my notebook with me and in the instance I don't have it, I make lists on my phone of things I want to write about. They need to know about my obsession with writing utensils, including these new Ticonderoga pencils that are now in colors, colors people!
I need to "go there" in my own writing - you know, that scary place where we investigate tragedies and conflicts? Then, I need to let them see what that's like. I need to take the time to research mentor texts and show kids how I study writers so I can mimic what they do, so I can help myself find my own way as a writer. I have to let them in on my own writing insecurities (I'm not as eloquent as I'd like to be) and work to make my classroom a place where they feel safe enough to share theirs. I need to keep up with PD in writing to bring fresh strategies to my students so both they, and I, can write in newer and livelier ways. I need to take time to plan Marathon Writing days so we can marvel in and be inspired by our surroundings and facilitate their planning of Author's Chairs so they can share their best work to a real-life audience.
Friends, there's no app for this.
While I totally appreciate all that technology does for us: lets us share, allows us to respond to others we normally wouldn't have the opportunity to, and publish our work in new and creative ways, I also understand that it takes more than that to put thoughtful, insightful, beautiful works out into the world.
It takes a writer.