What to do with Web 2.0 tools: An introduction to Thinglink

In this post we hear from Matt Stockman, who is sharing another handy free Web 2.0 tool and some ideas for using it in your classroom. Learn more about Matt at the bottom of the article.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but when you need to convey a lot of information to your students, supplementing that picture with related facts, information and other resources, becomes very powerful. Traditionally this is often done using PowerPoint slides or handouts, but ThingLink has made it possible to get a wealth of information on just one image.

ThingLink is a tool for creating an interactive image (or video) that links other content to it, such as videos, web links, documents and other images. It can transform a simple image into an informative engaging fact file. It can be used on both images and videos, and has now launched a feature for VR / 360 images.

You will need to sign up for either the free or subscription versions. The paid version offers more customisation and extra features.

The interactive mouse-over element makes it neat and professional, so the image is not crowded or difficult to read. The links to other resources to extend the learning (such as video, Google maps, web pages or a poll) are easy to navigate.


This simple image of a T.rex was taken from Discovery Education Espresso and made interactive with ThingLink. There are now five hover points, A – E, which expand to give more information, including further images, a video and a map.

ThingLink can also be used by your students effectively to annotate an image as an assessment of what they have learnt about a particular topic, with the evidence presented in an engaging visual way.

You’ll find lots more great ideas on using ThingLink in these links:

Leave us a comment if you try this, or find new ways to use ThingLink with your students — or you have found other similar tools that work well.

Matt Stockman Bio Pic

Matt has worked in education for over 12 years, both as part of the Discovery Education technical support team and as a Network Manager in two London secondary schools. He has a great interest in technology and in particular how it can be used to support teachers and engage students, making learning as fun and exciting as possible. Matt hopes to be able to share some of his experience through these posts and explain why he thinks certain technologies work well in education. Another big passion of Matt’s is attempting to close the gap between “techies” and teachers , to make sure they speak the same language to achieve the same goals of improving students learning — so expect to see this discussed in other posts.