Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a teacher and leader of digital learning, working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 2 class using iPads to engage and motivate learners and improve student achievement. This blog documents my teaching journey and my learning processes with iPads in the classroom. I've proud of having been a member of the inaugural Manaiakalani Digital Teaching Academy(MDTA) program and last year a Spark Manaiakalani Innovative Teacher (MIT) and Manaiakalani Google Class OnAir teacher.

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Capturing the Prior Knowledge

Last weekend I enjoyed the EduCampAKL unconference.  It was great to share some of the things I'd been doing but also network and get new ideas to use in the classroom.

One of these ideas was the use of Thinglink - a way of presenting many ideas in one space.  I'm able to Chromecast my laptop on the TV in my classroom so that learners can see their ideas are added and valued.

The first activity we did last week was to answer the question "How do I get the things I want?"  I took a photo of the class as they were sitting on the mat and then we added an idea to each learner (some learners had to leave for lessons outside of the class).

The next day we completed a new ThingLink and explored "Where does milk come from?"  It was really interesting to see what prior knowledge the learners had and this gave me a starting point with my teaching!  Importantly, the use of Thinglink means we're able to go back at the end of a unit and see how much progress we've made and what new knowledge we have!

I'm excited to see in how many other ways we can use this tool in the future!


  1. Thanks again for participating Karen and to see some of the outcomes of your learning. Your class of milk thinglink is particularly engaging and looks great when embedded for students to explore.

  2. Thanks Fiona - I love attending that sort of event as there is always something to learn or try in the classroom!