Thinking About “thinglink”
Thinglink is a very easy to use platform that allows you to layer videos, music, text, links and even voice to images in order to make them interactive. It can help you and your students present information in a different way.
Because it is visual in nature it may help those students who need that extra support to better understand a concept. Within the site are many examples that could help you with ideas and inspiration for ways to create your own.
You may create a basic account for free, and, yes, there are a few limits, like the type of icons you may choose. There is an EDU account for $39 a year, which allows you to create 5 classes and give access to 500 students. Students can be added without an email, invited via email or they may sign up themselves with an email. If you choose to create classes within the site, you can provide a class access code to the students once they are logged in that will link them to the class.
Once you have created an account, the creation of a “Thinglink” is quite simple.
- Sign into your Thinglink account (can be a personal account or an education account, which allows for classes and students).
- Click “Create” to start a Thinglink; choose a background from your local computer, the web (after reminding students how to safely use online images), or a variety of Cloud accounts.
- Add hotspots that link the viewer to multimedia resources. This includes text, images, videos, and audio recordings. Beware: They must be hosted in the cloud and accessible via a link, not on the local device.
- Save; share; e-mail; embed.
Created for a teacher professional development session:
Created by a 2nd grade student:
Classroom application ideas:
- Create infographics and graphic organizers to visually explain a complex topic.
- Design and share interactive digital posters.
- Curate resources for a topic or project and share with students.
- Share out an image to students and ask them to annotate it with hotspots discussing what they see. This can serve as a formative or summative assessment.
- World language or ESL/ELL teachers can add audio or video links to images that clarify understanding.
- Create a class picture with quick student-written information to share with parents or grade-level teachers. This is best accomplished by creating a class account that students access with a common login.
- Create a digital portfolio of student work over the course of a year, to be shared with parents at open house or the next year’s grade-level team.
- Create a timeline of events that includes appropriate multimedia resources.
- Share student artwork, adding an audio element that allows them to explain their creation or share a story they’ve written to accompany it.
- Social Studies/Geography classes could use maps as the image and have students add facts and details about the location.
The ideas are truly endless with this simple and versatile tool.