Explain Everything v Thinglink

ThinglinkExplain Everything

For many projects and assignments, I have often used the iPad app Explain Everything for Year 1 and 2 students to share their thinking. I have used Explain Everything for students to explain the features of 3D shapes and how they have worked out particular maths strategies. Thinglink has been used for students to review books they like or to make a quick comment about an image. After students make these projects, we share their work on the interactive whiteboard. It’s a real thrill for students to see their work displayed for the whole class to see.

Pros of Explain Everything:

  • Pictures, photos, text, symbols (arrows, etc) and videos can be inserted.
  • Students can draw pictures using the tools.
  • Students can record their voice.
  • The final Explain Everything project can be copied to the photo roll of the iPad, and then played on an ordinary computer.

Cons of Explain Everything:

  • It is not that intuitive and not simple to use (for year 1 and 2 students at least). Students need to be explicitly taught what each symbol (i.e. the + one for new slide) means, how to insert a picture or take a picture and so on.¬†Inserting arrows and different coloured text needs some playing around with.
  • I am still not sure how students do this, but sometimes when students draw a picture and then record their voice explaining the image, the picture somehow disappears until the very end of the video.

I recently discovered a great app called Thinglink. This is also an app where students can share their thinking.

Pros of Thinglink:

  • Pictures, photos, text and videos can be inserted.
  • Students can make a video.
  • The final Thinglink can be embedded into a blog.
  • It is intuitive and very easy to students to learn how to use.

Cons of Thinglink:

  • The final Thinglink cannot be saved onto the camera roll.
  • Students can’t draw pictures.
  • Internet connection is required for work to be displayed.

Overall, I feel that if I want students to make a book response or project that doesn’t require it to be saved onto the camera roll, Thinglink will be my preference.

How do you feel about using Explain Everything and Thinglink? Which one do you prefer students to use and why?


Update: the function on tellagami where you can type what a character is to say and they read it aloud is no longer free ūüôĀ

Recently I used the iPad app called “tellagami” with my Year 1/2 students and they loved it!

“Tellagami” is an app that can be used to make videos. This is how it works:

  • Students need to choose a background. They can choose from the ones on the app or take a picture of their own.
  • Students need to choose a person to talk. They can choose whether the person is male/female, what they look like (hair colour, eye colour, clothing).
  • Students then need to record their own voice or choose a voice on the app. There are many different voices to choose from, both male and female sounding voices.
  • The “tellagami” needs to be saved to appear on the iPad’s photoroll.

At my current school, we teach students resilience through the program called “You Can Do It!” or “YCDI!” This term, our YCDI key is “Organisation”. In groups of two or three, students were tasked with choosing a background in the classroom of an area that shows organisation and choose a person on the app to speak. Some students took pictures of their lockers, the book corner and the whole class sitting on the mat. They then practised saying how this demonstrated organisation. Next, students recorded their voices.

I saved these videos onto the iPad’s photoroll and then uploaded them to schooltube. My students loved seeing their work showcased as a video and it made teaching organisation much more engaging!

How have you used “tellagami” in the classroom?