Friday, November 18, 2011

What are Those Funny Looking Squares?

Have you noticed the unusual squares that are popping up in magazines, on store windows, and almost anywhere else you look? These are "QR" (quick response) codes that can be read with the camera of a smartphone or iPod Touch to provide information on products and services. You'll need to install a QR reader on your phone or iPod, and my quick search of the Apple Apps Store found many free or inexpensive QR readers.

With free software such as Kaywa or Qurify, you can even make your own QR codes to use in your classroom! Teachers are using QR codes to:
  • Provide web site links. Students can scan the codes with their phones instead of typing in the URL.
  • Post codes for homework, etc. on the board.
  • Link to videos or other interactive content by placing codes on a handout.
  • Post a code on the door with an embedded text file containing homework assignments, vocabulary lists, or study guides. Students can scan it on the way out the door.
  • Have students create QR codes linked to content that enriches their own presentations.
Read more about using QR codes in your classroom in this blog entry by David Andrade. And if you'd like to experiment with these codes in your classroom, I'd love to help!

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