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How to Create a ThingLink

How to Create a ThingLink

Author: Paula Dillon

1.  Create a Thinglink with both HTML embedding and URL links

2.  Share practices and ideas around instructional uses

"Every image contains a story and ThingLink helps you tell your stories and create interactive presentations. Your ThingLink interactive images form a channel that other users can follow.

Share your channel with friends on Facebook and Twitter, and follow your friends. Touch and discover."

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My Reflections on ThingLink and Interactive Presentations

Major shifts in the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) require students to have opportunities to practice and master skills in the areas of speaking and listening as well as the ability to compare, contrast, incorporate evidence, understand primary source documents, and create arguments.  In terms of student engagement and creation in these areas, the possibilities are endless.  Unfortunately, there has been an over reliance on the use of PowerPoint or slide shows for presentations, limiting creativity and too frequently resulting in students reading from the screen.  More recently there has been a shift to the use of interactive presentations such as Prezi, which has both its strengths and limitations.  After searching and experimenting with different interactive presentation tools, I found that ThingLink is a great option for teachers to use to share information with students, but even better, to have students create presentations that incorporate a wide variety of media and sources.  

When I was attending the PARCC ELC in Chicago recently, I attended a workshop on close reads using primary source documents.  This particular session pulled in a battle map of Antietam, an excerpt from the Gettysburg Address, a letter from a soldier sent home to his wife, and a Matthew Brady photograph of fallen soldiers along the battle road.  I thought that it would be a terrific exercise to make those sources come to life for students, and ThingLink was a perfect tool!  Below you will see the Thinglink I created.  Essentially, as you scroll over the different elements of the map, you will hear music  from the Civil War, see experts from today discuss the battle, see images of the generals where their encampments were on the map, read the letter from the soldier home to his wife, etc

In a classroom, I would have the students create a Thinglink with required elements.  They can collaborate and create together as well.  Even more importantly, I would have the students explain and show their Thinglink to the class, sharing their expertise.  The public speaking should require the students to cite the evidence that they found and compare and contrast media when appropriate.  They can even create ThingLinks using original pieces of their own art, music and photography.  The options are only limited by their creativity!  To see some examples other Thinglinks, click on the featured button on  

Remember to remind students of copyright and creative commons licensing.  It is important that students follow understand what elements they are allowed to incorporate from different sources and how they should cite those sources as part of your responsible and ethical use policy.

Source: Paula Dillon 3.17.13

My Sample Thinglink: Battle of Antietam

A tour of my first attempt at a Thinglink. This video shows the difference between embedding and linking media to a Thinglink. I will rerecord this video from another computer after our session. The sound quality is less than perfect.

Source: By Paula Dillon via Screencast ousing Thinglink (Image citations within the document)

Related Resources and Articles

Thinglink Tutorial Slide Show by JGoodburn from Burgettstown Area School via HelloSlide

Make Interactive Images on Thinglink Education by Ruchard Byrne via Free Technology for Teachers

Very Cool Interactive Thnglink on What ThingLink Can Do by J Kern via ThingLink



Source: Included above

ThingLink Cheat Sheet

Here is a step by step overview of how to get started with ThingLink.


Source: Paula Dillon 3.21.13

Thinglink OverView

Screenshots to assist you in getting started with ThingLink


Source: JGoodburn Burgettstown Areas Schools via Helloslide

ThingLink How to Video by Richard Byrne

Source: Richard Byrne Free Tech for Teachers on ThingLink via Youtube