This tool has been upgraded to having a page to itself as there are so many tools that are designed to support Flickr they need the space!


Flickr is basically a storage area for images (and now short videos!). It is owned by Yahoo and is free if you don't want to create more than three sets of photos (where you can organise your photos into groups like folders). If you want to create more than three sets, you will need to upgrade to a Pro account which is very reasonably priced and means that you can create unlimited sets. You can get a tour of the features of Flickr from the website.


  • When you upload the pictures, you are able to set the level of privacy you want for the pictures (eg who can see them – family, friends or public).
  • The ‘Add Note’ function allows you to set areas on the picture where a pop up comment will appear when the mouse rolls over that section of the picture.
  • Pictures can be downloaded in a range of sizes from Flickr by anyone able to view the pictures if you allow this.
  • You can lock down features such as adding notes and downloading to protect the copyright of pictures.
  • You can download Flickr Uploader from the site to make uploading a large number of photos at once much easier
  • Uploaded videos have an excellent video compression quality compared to other online video sites (but can only be 90 seconds long!)
  • Geotagging an image to a point on the world map means that you can browse yours and other people’s images by location.
  • A large number of third party website tools will allow you to access your Flickr account to create things from your images.
  • People on Flickr can use a Creative Commons copyright license for their images which means you can legally use them (often by giving attribution - saying who you sourced the image from).
  • People tag their own images on Flickr so you can often find images that match your search enquiry quicker than using an alternative search engine such as Google Images.
  • Being owned by Yahoo, Flickr is well established and likely to be around for awhile and has three separate back-up facilities in different parts of the US.
  • There are a number of ways to tell stories digitally within Flickr such as the ‘A Story in 5 Frames’ group or through using a series of hyperlinks to link pictures together in a sequence.

Educause outlines 7 tips to help you understand how Flickr can be utilised:

Many other examples are listed below:

Guides and Tutorials on Flickr

My own 5 page PDF Guide to Flickr
Read this document on Scribd: Flickr notes

Guides on all the features of Flickr

Useful Flickr Tutorials
Flickr Tutorial Series
Takes you through how to use Flickr.

Examples of Flickr in Education

General Educational Examples

To document models made by the kids - taken from this teacher's great photostream.
external image spaceball.gifMindmap.png
Take photos of Mindmaps to publish
To document your classroom displays and find great ideas for displays from other teachers.
external image 508144756_1c0b7f7f67.jpg
To document an activity such as creating animations. Note the use of a hyperlink under the pic to take you to finished animations.
external image 850634353_d69e41ff46.jpg?v=0
Publishing Instructional writing
(created completely in Comic Life)
external image 1802716135_2b9d043454.jpg
Using the comment feature to write about images in a sequence such as this example using Samarost.

Note feature built into Flickr Add_note.png

You can add notes over your different parts of your image once loaded up into Flickr. To do this, you click on 'Add Note' above the picture. A box will pop open for you to type your note into. You can click and drag the square that will mark where your note will be placed to the desired location. When you have finished typing your comment, you click 'Save'. From then on, anyone that puts their mouse over the square on the picture will see the note you typed.

There are a number of excellent examples of how you can use this idea in education. You do need to be aware that the comments will only be able to be seen when in Flickr. You can 't embed them with working comments on a wiki or blog so I have shown what it looks like with a comment open by taking a screen grab. Here are some links to some of my favourites which are pretty much all from Point England School in Auckland! If you want to know how the layouts were done - they used a great piece of software called Comic Life which is available online through Search Flickr for the tag ptengland to see more examples.

Mihis from Point England School
Stories by Year One kids at Pt England
Rock Our World - Music Project at Pt England School (instructional writing)
Labeling diagrams for science like this Spider Diagram
Adding labels to photos such as this Parts of a Book series by Hey Milly.
To share information about a group of kids as in this example from Summerland School.

Flickr for Digital Storytelling

While the note feature above allows for digital storytelling, you can also have a series of images to tell a story using Flickr. There are a number of dedicated sites on Flickr for this type of storytelling. Not all the groups on Flickr set up for Digital Storytelling are designed for education but Hey Milly has added one specifically for kids to use. The examples below are from her 'Tell a Story in 5 Frames - Kids' group. There is also a general story in five frames group.
external image 1738345912_a59100d717_m.jpg
external image 1738345974_1fa7860c99_m.jpg
external image 1738345988_f2898cd7f6_m.jpg
external image 1738402416_9fd3e911ab_m.jpg
external image 1738346052_d15c2c49bc_m.jpg
external image 1696931615_8db0d97365_m.jpg
external image 1696931645_6283c477ce_m.jpg
external image 1696931657_5c2e3225b0_m.jpg
external image 1736154732_4005b2404a_m.jpg
external image 1696931901_7547be5b5d_m.jpg

Movies in Flickr

If your movies are 90 seconds long or less, then Flickr is a great option to upload your movies to. The quality is excellent, you can set the level of privacy for each video, and you can embed the videos in other places like this:

Geotagged Images in Flickr

GeoTagging.pngThere is also a map option on your Flickr account where you can drag your images onto places on a world map. You can also see images from other users from within areas on the map. This would be a great resource when studying any country in the world or your own local area. Below is an example of what you will see if you do a search on the map for Hanoi in Vietnam. There are almost 27000 images for this location.

There are tutorials on how to use the Geotagging feature by Flickr. The first one is called GeoTags and You and gives you the basics that you need such as how to add pictures to the map and how to set the privacy levels for who can see the location of your photos. The second one called Exploring the Map and focuses on how to search for images from a location posted by all Flickr users.

There is a very user friendly tool to see the images on a world map called EarthAlbum. You can click on a country to see a selection of images from that country and can then do a keyword search within that country such as a place name (eg Auckland) or a type of place (eg beach).

Search Tools for Flickr

Creative Commons

If you want to be able to use pictures in Flickr, look for pics that use the Creative Commons license. You can use this search option from within Flickr itself. If you want to know more about CC copyright, visit my page on this wiki about this topic.

Search Tools Outside of Flickr
Below I also talk about search tools that also search within Flickr for Creative Commons content but have extra functionality.

Flickr Storm

This allows you to do a search for creative common licensed images and create a page with all of pictures on it. The videos below are great at showing the advantages of this and how you might best get children using this.

You can click here to go to a sample Flickr Storm set of pictures I gathered about our trip to Vietnam. The only draw back I see of using this is that there seems to be no way to edit or add to a set of photos after you initially gather them.


Compfight.pngAnother great search option for Flickr Photos. Tick the Creative Commons search box and then enter your search term to get images displayed that match that criteria with the most interesting pictures displayed first.

FlickRiver.pngThis is very attractive way to view images of a user or by a group or tag word. The default is to show the day's most interesting photos. The photos are displayed at a large size on a plain black background and if you scroll down, new pictures will load automatically - no next button.

Slideshow Tools for Flickr


All you need to do is paste the address of the Flickr set into the window in SlideFlickr, push 'Generate' and then it made this slideshow for me to embed.

Being Creative with Flickr Tools


This is an attractive and easy to use site. Enter a user name of a Flickr account or a tag to find a certain type of photo and then drag speech bubbles onto the photos and add your own text. You can have multiple frames in order to make a comic strip which would be great with the story in five frames idea. Below is a fairly true representation of a cycling trip that my husband and I were on in Vietnam.

Big Huge Labs

This is a wonderful site with a host of things that you can do with your Flickr images (or images uploaded from your own computer directly). I particularly like the option to turn your photos into movitational posters. There are a host of other things you can do to them as well such as creating a magazine cover.
external image 2387635381_73bca87021.jpg


This tool allows you to add speech bubbles and captions to your Flickr photos.
external image mona2.jpg


Another online editing tool where you use your Flickr photos to edit, add special effects and, in the case below, add stamps. When you click 'Edit this Picture' in Flickr, the picture will be automatically opened up in Picnik for editing. You can also save your newly edited pictures back into Flickr.
external image 2069578702_27d3093d81.jpg


You can use you Flickr photos to edit when using this tool to enhance your images and add special effects to them. You can also save your newly edited pictures back into Flickr.
external image 2448330512_aa97282c1d_m.jpg

Other Sites Using Flickr

Spell with Flickr turns the words that you put into it into pcitures that look like each letter from the Flickr library. In Retrievr, you sketch a shape and then it finds photos from Flicker that have similar colours and shapes. I found this quite interesting! Colr Pickr is a tool where you pick a colour and it finds photos that contain the same shade. There is a very similar tool for finding colours called Flickr Color Selector which only finds creative common pics. Fastr is a game where you are racing against the clock to guess the tags of the pictures you are shown. Splashr lets you search Flickr via tags, user ID, photo set ID or email address and display the results of the search in a Flash, HTML or an interactive player as a slideshow or gallery and view, email or embed the resulting presentation very well put together and great for creative writing potential.

Conversations about Flickr Photos


external image photophlow.png?1189063383This tool is quite interesting. Basically you can set up a chat room as a Flickr user and then invite others to the room to talk about photos in Flickr. You can do a search within your own photos or general photos in Flickr and post it for all the others to see and to then discuss. This would be awesome if you wanted to do an e-twinning project based around photography. Perhaps you could have photos of your local areas and the partner class could then ask you for more information based on the images you take. Or you could focus on a key photography concept such as the use of lines and have a discussion based around that. I have tried it out and found it to be pretty user friendly.