Category : Uncategorized

ThingLink Teacher Challenge June Update

The ThingLink Teacher Challenge is going strong at the end of June. If you haven’t joined us yet, this would be a great time to get started! We’ve launched 3 activities to date. Participants will find they can complete all three of them in about 2-4 hours, depending on your experience level, and the depth of the activity you design. Here is a summary of resources to help everyone stay on track during this self-paced PD opportunity in June and July.

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ThingLink Teacher Challenge Week 3: Designing a Virtual Audio Tour

What is a virtual tour or an immersive story?  A virtual tour takes the viewer to a real or imaginary location or place that is captured in a 360 image or video.  A tour that consists of multiple images typically has 1) a theme and 2) a storyline that defines how and in which order the images connect to each other.

Starting from documenting student projects at the school grounds to traveling around the world, here are examples of the most common 360 tour themes from ThingLink users:

  1. Documenting a student project
  2. Documenting a field trip
  3. Introducing your school or library
  4. Introducing your community or neighborhood  
  5. Introducing your country
  6. Creating a tour around the world
  7. Creating a virtual lesson for students
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May 17th celebration: A Virtual Field Trip to Norway

To celebrate the Norwegian Constitution Day, we decided to send a special greeting to our dear Scandinavian neighbors who are almost as happy as the Finns.  With love, we put together this virtual 360 degree tour to the stunningly beautiful land of fjords and fells. The tour starts from Laedal, goes through the longest road tunnel to Bergen, then takes a ferry to North, and ends up at a Constitution Day celebration party after a quick visit to Oslo.

Now, the only thing missing from this tour are the people! Do you have a story or memory from Norway? Here is what you can do:

a) Open the voice recorder on your phone and record an audio clip telling a special memory or story from Norway 

b) Open the ThingLink editor, clone any image from this tour to your own account, and make your own version of the trip! Add audio clips, notes, music, photos, videos, or anything you like –and share it onwards!

If you don’t have a ThingLink account yet, check out our new Premium Teacher plan!

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New Deals on ThingLink & Ricoh Theta


We are happy to share that ThingLink users can now purchase Ricoh Theta cameras with a partner discount code that gives 15% off any new purchase on the Ricoh US website. This means $30 off on the Ricoh Theta SC, and $60 off on the new Ricoh Theta V.  

Individual teachers and schools can use ThingLink and Ricoh Theta 360 camera to:

  • Take 360 images with students during field trips
  • Upload 360 images from computer hard drive or tablet directly to ThingLink editor
  • Easily add notes, audio, closeup photos or videos to 360 images
  • Copy and edit thousands of 360 presentations and tours created by other teachers
  • Embed interactive 360 images on any website
  • Directly record narration to 360 images on iPads

Planning for the new school year? ThingLink’s new starter account for schools ($500) lets teachers try 360 photo editing at $1/user. Sign up your school today and get started with immersive storytelling on thinglink.com/edu!

 

 

 

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Introducing our $35 Premium Teacher Plan for New Users

A new Premium Teacher plan: all features for one classroom

The new individual teacher plan includes all features, such as 360 editing, for one classroom (35 students) at $35 per year. The plan is available for new signups. Read more about who should sign up or transition to the new plan. 

UPGRADE TODAY

 

 

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Upcoming: Five Major Product Updates

We have very exiting news: in the next couple of weeks ThingLink is launching:

  • a new Premium teacher plan
  • a new school package
  • a new student management interface
  • a new version of the image editor, and
  • a new mobile creation experience.

Here are the main highlights for each:

A new Premium Teacher plan: all features for one classroom

The new individual teacher plan includes all features such as 360 editing for one classroom (35 students) at $35 per year. The plan will be available for new signups already this week! Read more about who should sign up or transition to the new plan. 

 

A new school package

Our new school starter package at $500 includes 500 accounts for use by teachers or students. This means new teachers in a school can now try ThingLink at much lower price ($1 per user). The school plan is designed to grow throughout the adoption phase, with the option to purchase additional accounts in increments of 250, or professional development on demand.

A new student management interface

The new interface offers more flexible ways to manage students and groups for individual teacher and school accounts. For example, teachers and school admins can now easily add more students to their account and see how many students have signed up. The new interface is available for teachers on Wednesday, May 2nd. 

New ThingLink editor

This new streamlined editor supports flat and 360 images with the same feature set. It features a new selection of layout templates for different types of content, which makes the creation flow faster and easier. The new editor will be available to our beta users users in May and all users in June.

 

New mobile creation experience

In addition to a new look and feel, the mobile editor supports direct audio recording to camera images. The iPad version that will be in the App Store in May, will support  audio recording to 360 images as well!

 

This is a lot to digest, but we believe these new features, packages and improvements will make ThingLink the most flexible and affordable immersive storytelling tool to improve digital literacy skills.

In the next weeks we will be writing about each feature in more detail based on the questions we get. We would like to invite you to join the discussion about new features on the ThingLink Education group on Facebook!

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360 Tours to Introduce Your School or Classroom

360 tours are a fantastic way to bring new students, parents, and community members into your school for a closer look. There’s no need to hire an expensive designer or photographer, just snap some pictures with your phone or an entry level 360 camera and upload to ThingLink.

Below, we’ve compiled some of the best examples of teachers, libraries, and schools that have created 360 virtual tours. Explore for inspiration and ideas!

Nelle Shean Junior High Media Center

via Nelle Shean Junior High

In this tour of the media center from Nelle Shean, students can find different reading sections and learn what the process is if they forget their iPad.

Mrs. Stumpf’s Classroom Tour

via Lisa Stumpf

New students can learn everything from what to do when they first walk into class, to where to find the week’s assignments, to the process for no-name homework. Mrs. Stumpf has done a fantastic job pointing out all the resources of note in her classroom, hopefully alleviating new class jitters for some students.

21st Century Cyber Charter School

via 21st CCCS

For an online school like 21st CCCS, a virtual tour of their offices may help students and parents feel more connected. A calendar tag is updated monthly to keep everyone up to date with what’s happening.

A. K. Smiley Public Library

via A. K. Smiley Public Library

Though we’re not in a school, this Library makes excellent use of transition tags to guide us from one room to another. We get to explore through video tours, written histories, slides showcasing the art, and a Google Maps tag to get us there. A combination of media types lets the viewer learn in as many ways as possible.


Tips and Tricks

  • Use many media types to give your viewers a rich virtual experience. A combination of videos, images, text, audio, and embeds keep them engaged and exploring.
  • Combine images from multiple rooms with transition tags. Additional spaces let your viewer getter a better sense of context and let them explore even more of your amazing space!
  • Add custom icons instead of the default transparent and image icons. Just click the blue circle in the editor to upload any image you want.
  • Click-through links in captions mean that students and parents don’t need to copy and paste to access your links. Learn how.

Ready to create your own tour? Try it out with a 14 day trial of Premium Education and start uploading.

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Celebrating a Total Solar Eclipse!

total solar eclipse will cross the United States today, starting just after 10 a.m. PT in Oregon and ending just before 3 p.m. in South Carolina. Depending on your viewing location, the eclipse will last between 1  and about 2 1/2 minutes. Those gathering outdoors to catch a glimpse of this rare occurrence need to prepare for viewing. The ThingLink above is a curated collection of information and resources for making the most of the moment. Be sure to check out directions for capturing the eclipse with the camera on your phone!

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Create an Interactive Historical Art Lesson

It can be hard to remember history and to keep track of all the different facts and events – and art history even more so! There is a lot of meaning and significance buried in art, and extracting these is key to the learning experience. What better way to do this than by making the art interactive?

Extract meaning from the art by focusing on specific parts of it and creating explanatory tags. You can make use of our different pre-made icons for different corresponding tags – or even create your own icons with one of our paid plans. 

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Take A Deep Dive Into Cell Anatomy

What better way to learn cell anatomy than to make it interactive? Take anatomy in your classroom to the next level by having your students tag diagrams with informational materials and descriptions.

Since anatomy can be incredibly complicated and detailed, students can take the time to clearly and purposefully label and tag diagrams for a deeper learning experience. ThingLink images can be tagged with a wide variety of rich media tags to make them even more engaging.

Explore Our Example

This great example of hands-on learning was created by a student, and includes text tags and video narration for a thorough learning experience.

 


Now that you’ve explored this great example, it’s time to get started!  If you want to learn more about how to use all our other features, schedule a demo with a ThingLink expert or sign up for one of our free webinars. You can also check out some other great education examples here. Happy Tagging!

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