Wednesday, December 12, 2012

QR Codes

"So.. umm.. what's a QR code?"

Well, a QR (quick response) code is a barcode that can be scanned using an app on your SmartPhone, iPad, iPod, etc. It can contain images, website links, and text messages. Fun fact: unlike your standard UPC barcode which uses only 12 digits, a QR code can store up to 7,089 numerical characters or 4,296 alphanumeric characters!

On our iPads, we use the Scan app, which was free!

As Winter Break approaches and all the kids in Santa hats are getting a little restless, why not try out a pre-made activity using the iPads? It'll get your class moving and excited!

A quick search on TeachersPayTeachers for "QR code" brought up 160 results, and some of them were freebies!


Some of the lessons had students make their own QR codes, while others use the QR codes to check student answers. 


Or, if you're feeling daring, you could make your own! I usually use qrcode.kaywa.com to make them. You just enter in the text box what you want your QR code to link to (URL, text, etc.) and click on Generate Free and you can take a screen shot of your QR code to save it for later. 



And now that you're really excited about using QR codes with your students, here are 46 Interesting Ways to Use a QR Code to Support Learning!

I have various activities and QSGs stored away for QR Codes, so let me know if you're interested in co-planning or need any help!



Wednesday, December 5, 2012

PuppetPals

While this week's post is mostly about the PuppetPals iPad app, let me blow your mind a little bit.

First off, I recorded a screen cast for this week's iWonder to try something new! 


To record the screen cast, I used ScreenCast-o-Matic.com. It is a very easy website to use, and I was recording in less than 30 seconds! I've used it in the past also to record directions for my students when I was absent- that way I know they hear exactly what I want them to do. Next time you leave sub plans, maybe you could record one too! Why not record you explaining directions that a sub might have on the SmartBoard? Or try "flipping" the classroom and have your students watch something at home on your website to discuss the next day in class? I see so many possibilities!


I also used a program called AirServer to have my iPad projected onto my laptop wirelessly. I'm currently testing out a 7 day trial, but so far it's pretty cool! 


In my screencast, I mentioned that my cousin is a Kindergarten teacher in Wisconsin. We got to talking on Thanksgiving, and he has iPads in his classroom that his students use daily. He has uploaded some of their work onto a YouTube channel, and it's amazing what his kids are doing! Check out one of his students using PuppetPals to retell a story. I think it aligns perfectly with some Common Core literature standards!


I also found another idea for using iPads with the Common Core standards on the Technology Tailgate (where else?! :). Check out how this teacher used ShowMe to do a reading response. (We don't have ShowMe, but you could use ScreenChomp to do the same thing on our iPads).