You’ve noticed these dot patterns, everywhere right?
Have you used QR Codes in the classroom yet? If you have iPads, iPhones, smart phones, desktops and the internet, then you are ready to go!
What is a QR code?
The initials stand for Quick Response. Similar to a bar code, the pattern holds and provides information, images, text, web links and so much more.
Why use a QR Code?
There are many reasons to use QR Codes, but the first thing that attracted me was, I knew immediately, that the kids’ interest and engagement was guaranteed. They love the technology! Using their ipads to access information and tasks, gives students a positive and independent learning experience.
It takes away the danger and inconvenience of student typing a web address and making a simple mistake, which is either frustrating and time-consuming or results in them landing on a completely different site!
You can provide independent activities, tasks, scaffolding and support to students via these codes. So while you’re working with another group, your centres run smoothly, because you controlling and facilitating, but can be with another group.
This is a solution for teachers trying to find time for numerous re-reads.
If you follow a few simple rules, QR Codes are safe to use in the classroom. Students can only access what you tell them to via the QR Code.
Pointing at a code and been taken on a journey is simply FUN!
How to use QR codes for Reading Centres
In no way am I suggesting that these replace the pleasure of holding and reading a physical book, but this is a great way for students to re-visit a shared book.
I created many QR Codes for books and trailers for books, that I found online. Most were on YouTube, but other sites are developing too. I copy the link on Safeshare to eliminate any YouTube ads and connection problems for the classroom.
Students scan the code, listen to the story being read aloud to them, or watch the trailer. This can be a small group activity: listen, discuss and respond. All independent of adult help.
They can enjoy the text independently: pausing, re-playing and noticing more during a second or third reading. This means their reading responses are more thoughtful.
If integrating research skills into your centres, you can provide QR codes that direct students to information, appropriate for their interest and reading level. For example, watching a video about pandas, will provide a struggling reader with ample information in a stress-free way. They will happily record their knowledge without the mindless plagiarism teachers often are handed.
Another idea is to print QR codes on sticky labels. You can put on the cover of books in your classroom library, to alert students that there is more to explore. This is great for early-finishers or extra incentive for home reading.
This is a great way for students to enjoy and explore books, especially if you find interviews with authors or illustrators talking about their books, ideas and how they write and draw.
What do you need?
Most people use a QR Reader on a smart device: an iPhone, iPad, any desktop with a camera. There are many QR readers. I use i-nigma, which is quick and reliable, but there’s lots of choice. There is a Chrome extension for desktops, so that frees up your handheld devices. Simply search “QR readers”, and select one that’s compatible with your equipment.
How to make your own QR codes
It is very easy to make your own codes! Once again, there are many choices to create a QR Code. I like the free ones! I use https://www.unitag.io/qrcode
It’s fast and easy. Free to choose different colours, insert a logo or image to identify the book.
- Find the video, site or information you want available to the students
- Copy the web address
- Paste it into your QR code generator
- Choose colours, logo etc for your code
- Download the code
- It downloads as a png image so you can insert it into a document.
- You are ready to print!
- Laminate for long life.
FREE QR CODES
To celebrate Australia’s Book Week, 19-26 August, 2017, here are some codes to get you started. Enjoy, and let me know your opinion.