Royalty Free Images for Teachers

Here’s information about where to get images from when submitting powerpoints to the site and/or making movies, powerpoints in your classroom.

Teachers often search google to find images. When you’re looking for a picture of a conga eel to explain what one is to an English Language Learner, for example, nothing really beats it in terms of speed and ease of use.

However, there are a couple of problems with using google for images in the classroom:

  • 1. You can sometimes pull up inappropriate images. (A search for beavers found a picture of Sharon Stone)
  • 2. Although you can use google images in your internal classroom presentations you do not have permission to reproduce those images by making copies of your presentation, posting it on the internet, sharing it outside of your classroom, etc…
  • See Hall Davidson’s Copyright Guidelines for Teachers for more information on copyright for teachers.

    But there are several sites that offer royalty free images that you can use free of copyright restrictions in your classroom. Some of these sites also filter out inappropriate content. Now that you know about them, why not use them?
    a free product of Tech4Learning—these are images donated for classroom use
    I always start here in the classroom because there are no inappropriate images and the site is simple enough so that I have taught first graders to navigate it.

    Free Images Donated by Photographers
    This is my second destination when I can’t find what I’m looking for on pics4learning. They are not necessarily for educational use but are available free and taken by real photographers who are willing to share their images.

    Flickr Creative Commons Images
    has images taken by photographers of different abilities (amateur and professional) which you can use according to their Creative Commons license.

    free images for web pages

    iStock Photo – only $1 a picture
    If you still can’t find what you want or are going to use your images in commercial projects, why not pay $1 per photo and use the image legally? These site has pictures of almost anything you would want.

    Use the challenge of respecting copyrights as a teachable moment for students. How can we ask students not to illegally download music if we steal images?

    Free Clip Art

    Speaking of Music
    CogDogRoo has a great list of free music

    For visual and auditory learners, here’s Marco Torres’s enhanced podcast on copyright.

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    8 Responses to “Royalty Free Images for Teachers”

    1. Creating Lifelong Learners » Blog Archive » Reading Strategies V.2 Says:

      […] in the hall who gave their feedback on my designs. Photo credit is given on the back of the cards. Royalty free images were used in each case. These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share […]

    2. elona hartjes Says:

      Thanks so much for the info regarding pictures. Since starting my class blog, I need sources other than the creative commons on Flickr. I’ll share these sites with my students.

    3. Mark Says:

      Useful links. Thanks Mathew.
      Just wanted to suggest a Royalty Free music resource in return, that may be very useful as well:

    4. Mathew Says:


      Seems like a pay site whereas the ones I’ve recommended are free. If you have a music budget then I recommend Soundzabound at

    5. tilgunas Says:

      I’d add Lots of city, animal, and landscape photos, ok’d for Educational use as long as you cite the photographer.

    6. Tom Says:

      Thanks for the interesting article. I also found free images at

    7. Veronica McLane Says:


      Just found this in your site. Thanks!


    8. Chris Says:


      Thanks a ton for this list of links. really much appreciated. I have been keen follower of digital photography and its impact on content sharing site. Now we do have lot of sites which provide good images for our purposes but they dont allow you to download high resolution images for free. But with digital photography becoming more and more affordable a lot of new sites have come up and they allow you to download any number of high resolution images, all for free. I found two such sites – high resolution free images and free images collection. Hope it helps.


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