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Photo sources for the classroom

 pictur sources chart  
Richard Byrne of Free Tech for Teachers has updated his handy chart of reliable photo sources to use with students. Personally, I love pixabay, but it is fairly easy to find photos you might not want younger students to find and I find the sponsored ($$) images at the top of every searc tends to confuse people. 

Photos for Class from the folks at Storyboard That might be better with younger students. I had a chuckle searching for “naughty” words and getting pictures of “adorable puppies.” The filtering seems fairly smart though- ie: “breast cancer” actually brings back relevant results, rather than the adorable puppy page.

Google Open Gallery

I’d forgotten that several months ago I’d requested an invite to test Google’s Open Gallery service. It’s the software that powers Google’s Art Project,  Historic Moments and World Wonders projects.  As of December 2013 it is being made available to anyone, though you do still have to apply for an invitation.


Test gallery with Google Custom Gallery

The software lets you build a collection of images and add text descriptions and metadata.  Your collections are displayed on a website with your own URL or a custom URL. Individual items can be gathered into exhibits of related materials. Akin to software like ContendDM and Omeka. (I have no experience with these tools, so can’t compare features.)

The service is quite simple to use and I had a small test collection and an exhibit up and running in about 15 minutes. It’s the pollyalida collection of flowers – of course!

To really get a sense of what you can do with this, take a look at these collections.

What an easy way to get a small collection of historic photos, archival materials, art images and more online quickly and easily. And free.


Jetpack Carousel

Just a quick test of the updated Carousel slide show feature in Jetpack.  Click on any thumbnail to go to the Carousel powered slide show.  Carousel turns any standard WordPress photo gallery into a full screen, easy to browse slide show. Viewers can leave comments on individual images and EXIF data can be included if desired.

These are a few of the photos that I took during a visit to the Sello Library in Espoo, Finland in May 2012.

FlickrCC for Creative Commons photos

I love using flickrCC to search for Creative Commons licensed photos on flickr. It’s faster and simpler than the advanced search on flickr itself.

But I had blindly not noticed that they have incorporated Aviary photo editing as an option right off the main screen. (Thanks to Judy O’Connell for a Facebook post mentioning the change. Go read her HeyJude post for tons of info on free image sources!)

To edit in flickrCC: 

1: Do a search, making sure you have the FOR EDITING option checked.  (forgive my Helskinki obsession….)  Select an image and image size. Note that the attribution info is all set for you to copy and paste!


2: Click on the EDIT link, make your edits, save and close the editor. (more…)

HistoryPin: Maps, Photos and Stories

I’m getting delightfully lost in the HistoryPin website. Old photos, layered on top of Google Maps and stories to go with them – all things that I love to explore.

What is HistoryPin?

The site invites the public to dig out, upload and pin their own old photos, as well as the stories behind them, onto the Historypin map. Uniquely, Historypin allows users to layer their old images onto modern Street View scenes, revealing a series of windows into the past.

Historypin is one in a series of projects created as part of We Are What We Do’s campaign to get generations talking more, sharing more and coming together more often.  (

Wouldn’t this would be a great project for libraries and schools to get involved with? It makes me think of the wonderful Remember When photo & memory project done by the Ipswich Library in Queensland Australia.

(The screenshots at the top are then & now images of a tunnel called the Argyle Cut that was dug through a sandstone ridge in Sydney in the mid 1800’s. )

SimpleViewer Photo Gallery

SimpleViewer creates elegant photo galleries for spiffing up your web sites. The galleries can be standalone pages or embedded in other pages. But what has me excited is the WordPress plugin.

The SimpleViewer plugin adds a little button to the  editing toolbar that pulls up a control panel. Photos can be pulled from a flickr account or your WordPress photo uploads. There are a few settings for size and style. But nothing complicated or confusing! This is truly simple and elegant. I think this is my new favorite WordPress plugin!

[simpleviewer gallery_id=”2″ bgcolor=”ffffff” gallery_width =”100%” gallery_height =”600″]

p.s.  For some unknownable reason, this plugin worked fine on another WordPress site, but wasn’t working here. After a day or two and much research, it works. But not for any reason that makes sense.  Maybe I just clicked the mouse a little harder today. 🙂 Yep, that’s it.