Make Belief Comics

Recently, I was alerted to a new comic-making tool: Make Belief Comix. Here is a sample of what you can do:

Passing Notes

And here is a more thorough explanation from the creator of the site, Bill Zimmerman, who emailed me the following:

Dear reader,

I want to share with you news of my newest educational project and also
ask for your help to make it succeed.

I have launched a new web site — http://
where children and adults can create their own comic strips.  They can
select from 15 fun characters with different moods  — happy, sad,
angry, worried – and write words for  blank talk and thought balloons
to make their characters talk and think.  There also are story ideas
and prompts to help users create graphic stories.

This site can be used by educators to teach language, reading and
writing skills, and also for students in English-as-a-Second-Language
programs to facilitate self-expression and storytelling, as well as
computer literacy. Some educational therapists use it with deaf and
autistic people to help them understand concepts and communicate.
Parents and children can create stories together, print them to create
comic books or email them to friends and family.  Others will find the
site a resource to be creative, calm down and have fun.

Because so many Spanish-speaking users asked us for the ability to
write their cartoons in Spanish as well as in English, we recently
upgraded the site to accept words written in Spanish, including
appropriate accent marks. This can be a useful tool for someone who is
learning Spanish as well as someone whose first language is Spanish.
In time, this feature will be extended to other languages.

I am hoping that you will share  with
your colleagues, teachers, students or readers of your publications and
resource lists.  The site is free with no advertising.  Any help you
might offer in getting word out about this project is very appreciated.
If you can suggest other people or groups whom I might contact to make
them aware of the site please send me their names, email addresses or
phone numbers.   Relevant Internet resource sharing groups would be
helpful, too.  It takes a community to build a useful resource like
this one.

As one who learned to read with comic books, I know that creating comic
strips can help people tap into their creativity and practice their
language and storytelling skills.  The site is free and stems from my
lifelong mission to create resources that help people find their voice
and express themselves. The concept for is derived
from my earlier books, Make Beliefs and Make Beliefs for Kids of All
Ages (which can be found on my other web site:  A Make Beliefs interactive feature
appeared for 13 years on my syndicated Student Briefing Page for
Newsday, and in National Geographic’s World Magazine.

I hope you like and will use it in your
work and personal life.  Your feedback is welcome and very helpful.

With thanks and every good wish,

Bill Zimmerman

Along with ToonDoo, which I was introduced to last semester, I am thinking about how I might use Make Belief Comix in my ENG 315 class this semester, so this was a timely email from Bill. Please contact him with questions.

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