Using ThingLink for Figurative Language

by Amy Pietrowski

ThingLink is one of my favorite apps, and I have been using it in different capacities for several years now.  Labeling pictures and maps made so much sense to me as a social studies teacher. We downloaded Civil War images from the Library of Congress and added several media assets from sites to sounds. As a technology teacher, we labeled feet with our digital footprints and created tours of our school with ThingLink 360/VR. But now, as an English teacher, I had to do a little thinking…. What would be the best use of ThingLink in the Language Arts classroom?

One day it came to me: figurative language!

First, I created a metaphors channel of images. Each student selected a picture featuring nature and came up with three metaphors. Next, they made a deeper connection with their metaphors by adding corresponding images. This group of sixth-graders picked up ThingLink so quickly, I knew they’d have no trouble at all with 360/VR.

I was right! As we moved through a few lessons on word connotation, I dreamed up the next adventure. Through Google Classroom, I provided students with the link to the Teleport library of 360/VR images. Once they chose an image and cloned it, they were instructed to create at least five tags with sentences containing positive connotations meant to convince prospective visitors to come to “their” city. Some of the results were truly magnificent.  Here is one created for Copenhagen, Denmark!

About the Author

Amy PietrowskiAmy Pietrowski, a Maine native, has taught in several schools around the world due to her husband’s Army career. This has given her the opportunity to teach at every grade level and almost every subject area. In the classroom Amy always infused technology into her lessons and, as a middle school language arts teacher, she strives to create a balance of tech skills and curriculum standards in each lesson. Amy has presented at numerous local and statewide technology conferences, has a passion for helping teachers use technology effectively in their classrooms, and is a part-time, online instructor for Michigan State’s Master of Arts in Educational Technology program.

Thinglink helps us promote visible thinking strategies!”

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