Dig Lit Sunday: QR Codes

One of my goals this year has been to increase the amount of digital writing in the classroom, so posting my digital learning on Sundays will push me a bit. Thank you Margaret for inviting me and I look forward to reading all of the thinking offered here. I am a beginner in this world, but what I do know is you must do to really learn!  I heard Katharine Hale and Troy Hicks’s podcast this morning. It is well worth a listen. That is exactly how I want my classroom to be. It is so great to have mentors out there blazing trails for the rest of us to follow on.

Last week I posted a little item about finally using QR codes in the classroom and Margaret asked me to write a little about it here.

my classroom blog

In a nutshell a QR (quick response) code can provide easy access to anything that is alpha numeric with a scan of the code. Typically it’s a URL. In an upper grade classroom where students have access to iPhones and iPads, this this a perfect way to give them quick access to information for research. I have used this to get them to websites quickly, no time is lost on typing in the URL. It seems silly, but I have seen students spend up to ten minutes trying to type in a URL. It takes away from their learning and usually another child’s learning as they help them. For sites we are going to use for a unit of study I have taken the time to load them on to the iPads, but that takes prep. With a QR code, all I need to do is print it out and students scan it. To create a QR code I like qrstuff.com. It allows for color which helps students get to the correct code to scan. Imagine today’s links for the debate are in red, for social studies in blue. A QR reader app need to be loaded on to iPads, but that is a one time thing.

There are amazing ways teachers have been using QR codes in the classroom. Check this google doc for many examples. I particularly like #52 on this list where students create their own scavenger hunt. Pretty cool stuff.