Thursday, January 14, 2021

Delivering CI in a pandemic: Three word pictures

 This is an activity that I learned from Keith Toda many years ago and one that I really enjoy doing, when I remember. The basic premise is that you give students three vocabulary words and they draw a picture that incorporates all three words. What I like to do that point is to share one or two of the images and discuss them in Latin. By the end of the period, I will show an image and ask students to tell me what they see. Generally speaking, students really enjoy this activity and like being silly and creative.

Knowing that I enjoy this activity, I am surprised how long it took me to give it a try in this new pandemic induced environment. I was a bit ahead in the Latin II plans as I had to rework everything due to technical difficulties in my classroom, and so on a whim I decided to figure out how to do this activity. 

I needed a digital whiteboard option and went with which my colleague John Foulk showed me. I must say that while it wasn't a perfect execution, it was one that I am going to add to my "digital toolbox" for the future. 

Image Description: from the
teacher's point of view. Toggle Teacher
whiteboard is on the top and student 
whiteboard previews are below. 

I started the period by letting students play a gimkit in one of the new forever modes to refamiliarise them with the vocabulary I'd be pulling from and then I opened an open class on I invited students to the class using the link and the QR code that the site gives me and each student had, upon entering, a whiteboard complete with colours, typing tools, and image insertion capabilities. 

The sticky part for me came to sharing student images with each other. I was hoping I could simply share an image with them and then when I stopped, they'd still see their own. Rather, required me to push it out to their screens. 

Image description: Teacher whiteboard is shown via A menu is open and shows how to push
images out to students' whiteboards. 

The kids had a lot of fun with this and, while a few lamented how difficult it was to draw on their phones, most of them enjoyed this and I got some really great images from the students (shared below). One of the things I really liked, however, about this that I haven't really seen anywhere else so easily is the save option. Both the students and the teacher have the option to save images (the students save their own and the teacher can save any of them). This allows me to have the potential of an entire database of images I can use later in discussions! 

All of this was done on the free version of this site. I have not explored the paid version of this, but I did discover at least one aspect that was only available via the paid version which was image feedback. If you have an account and pay for it, you can give students real time feedback on their images privately. 

Ultimately I was happy with this tech tool and I will use it again... unless I find something better :) stay tuned!

Student Images:

Latin words given: umbra, ramum, and felix
Image description: a happy dog ghost
holds a branch in his mouth


Latin words given: villa, cena, and horribilis
image description: outside of a large country house 
a soda, a burger, and a slice of pizza plan to do
horrible things 


Foulk, J. M. (2020). Spice up your Latin. Retrieved from:

Toda, K. (2020). Todally comprehensible Latin. Retrieved from: (2021). Retrieved from: