QR codes are specifically for mobile “smart” devices and are similar, in theory, to the bar codes you see on nearly any product nowadays. When scanning a QR code, your mobile device reads the information off the code and instantly links you to the desired location. The Kaywa QR code generator allows you to create a unique QR code for any website you like, along with possibilities for linking to other types of information, like a Facebook profile, set of contact information, or a coupon (still in BETA). These QR codes can then be saved to your computer and used like any other image, meaning you can put it into virtually any document.
Not only are QR codes a more unique way to link to information, I think they provide for lots of possibilities to streamline regular classroom activities and assignments. For example, when I worked with a P.E. class to make a personal work out log using Google Forms, we also created QR codes to quickly link them to their logs. By now, most students have smart phones and most, whether you approve or not, have them with them throughout the school day. Using these QR codes, students were easily able to log their workouts on their phones as soon as their workouts were over.
Other ways you could use QR codes?
- Put on posters for school events to link to more information, such as a calendar event, Twitter feed, or Facebook event page
- Create classroom posters for commonly used class resources, such as OWL at Purdue. Instead of reciting the URL for students over and over, have them link right to the page
- Have the QR code link to a Google Form you have created with exit slip or bell-ringer questions. Students can easily bring up the form and answer the questions as they exit/enter the room (BONUS: Use Flubaroo to grade these for you!)
I could go on and on…but want to hear from you instead! Head on over to my Tutorials and Resources page to see a quick step-by-step tutorial on how to get started then let me know – how have you (or would like to) use QR codes in the classroom?