QR Codes: Scanning to Learn



Photo credit: lydiashiningbrightly via flickr (CC BY 2.0)

QR codes have become increasingly popular. Originally created for Smartphone users, advertisers have used QR codes to broadcast information.  Scanning codes have become commonplace in retail stores as well as in many periodicals and are emerging as an effective classroom tool.   A quick response code is a digital image that can be scanned with the use of a bar code scanner.  The code can take you directly to a website. With many classrooms equipped with mobile devices, QR codes can direct students to endless virtual destinations. To get started you need a Qr code reader and a QR code generator to get your students scanning.  Visualead allows you to generate visually appealing codes in three simple steps. Download a QR code reader on your mobile device and students are ready to scan.

Use your Quick response codes to:

  1. Differentiate in the classroom- QR codes can direct students to different information while working on the same skill. Perhaps after reading the same text, QR codes can direct students to different sets of questions that are appropriate for their reading level.  Specific codes can also be created for various reading groups, directing them to various extended learning sites.  Quick response codes can also accommodate different learning styles. Students can scan to visual or musical representations of information.
  2. Make research easy- From my experience working with research projects, many younger students find googling information too overwhelming.  There is simply too much information that is not child friendly. Create codes for students to scan to websites useful for research projects. This eliminates endless Googling and fosters a more efficient research environment.
  3. Create a learning based scavenger hunt- Post codes around the school or classroom for a skills based scavenger hunt.
  4. Scan for classroom incentives- Students can scan codes that lead to fun apps or simply to a sit with a friend pass.
  5. Scan for clarification- Students who may need extra assistance or explanation can scan to how-to” videos.

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