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QR Codes to Explore Trees

October 13, 2012

I recently came across Cool Cat Teacher’s QR Code Classroom Implementation Guide and inspiration struck. I had already installed the Scan App on the student iPads knowing it would come in handy one day.

Our 8th grade environmental science unit has a forestry focus. The initial plan was to have students use the iPad to find information to complete a Venn Diagram comparing deciduous and evergreen trees. I realized that with the QR codes, I could actually help them focus on specific sites that might benefit their research. The blog post led me to a great QR code generator called Kaywa. I found four websites and created a QR code for each corner of their paper. However, in the oral introduction to the assignment, I didn’t tell students what the QR codes were. I had “hidden” a helpful hint on the bottom of their diagram paper that told them where the app was to read the code.

How’d it go? Within the first five minutes of the activity, My entire 1st period class was scanning the QR codes. The two people who found the hint kept quiet but the others started to watch what they were doing and figured it out. They finished the activity so quickly I gave them time to explore an interest on Science360 My third period class was a little slower. By 10 minutes in though, they were all scanning. As they finished, some tried to scan other items (non coded) in the classroom with no results. They ended up with Science360 time, too. Ninth period was another story. One person found it right away, but kept her finding secret. Ten minutes in, I directed them all to the hint at the bottom of their paper. Even after the hint, I had two students who stuck to trying to Google.

Qr_codes

Looking forward to finding out more ways to use QR codes.

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