Friday, January 31, 2014

QR Code Caprice

QR Codes can bring a classroom or project to life… I can not take credit for all of the QR Code ideas I am about to share. There are so many creative teachers inspiring students and I wanted to share some of the ideas I have come across during my travels as an integrator. QR Codes can be created with an iPad or a computer. At the end of this article I will explain ways to create and read QR Codes.

1. Make a Project Come to Life: For any project, book report,
collage, poster, lab report, artwork, etc. have students record their voice using an app like AudioBoo, or a website like Record MP3 talking about their project, explaining their understanding of a concept, or reading the story that goes along with their project.  Or have students make a movie or movie trailer using an app like iMovie, the camera on an iPad/iPod, the camera on a laptop, the movie editor in YouTube, a Flip Camera and software, or other various video recording devices plus software. Then upload the video or audio to a site that will give the work an url like Flickr, YouTube, Vimeo, or Picasa. From there students can create a QR Code to print and attach to their project. AudioBoo generates QR codes directly on their site.

In Photo Above: Mrs. Lariviere's 2nd grader's Monster Stories, QR Code leads to student audio story.

2. The QR Keychain: Create a keychain of QR codes based on different needs in the classroom. The keychains can be for independent study math videos, tutorials, audio books, classroom library book reviews, morning messages, favorite websites for each standard, etc.

Keychain photo provided by

3. A QR Scavenger Hunt: Create a scavenger hunt. Most QR generators allow the user to have a QR Code for simple text. This brings me back to finding my Easter Basket during childhood. My parents created clues that led to new clues within plastic eggs that would eventually lead me to my Easter Basket. I think that I will create a hunt using QR Codes with my own children this Easter. Teachers do not have to be the only creators. Creating a scavenger hunt would be a fun task for students as well, especially for those students that need an extra challenge.

4. Book Reviews/Trailers: This can be done in audio or video form using apps like the ones mentioned in example #1. The QR Code can be archived/attached on the back of the actual book for students to continue to use every school year or made into a bulletin board to share with others for that moment in time. If you use the bulletin board format, I recommend taking some time for a museum walk before the bulletin board is removed.

Bulletin Board: Mrs. Cartwright, 4th Grade

Museum Walk: Ms. Nason, 3rd Grade

5. Center Work: Have QR Codes displayed during center work. It will help students quickly get to their destination on the device they are using. When students complete the assignment, they can be prompted to another QR Code. Help videos can be included at the center so that your time is freed up to work with students in small groups.

6. Writing Promt Dice: A student is stuck on what to write about. Let them roll for ideas. Check out these writing prompt dice and print your own from my Literacy Site

7. Videos Demonstrating SOPs: Record students acting out the proper way to do different things in the classroom. Then when a student does not remember the appropriate Standard Operating Procedure, they can watch the video by scanning the corresponding QR Code. This allows for students to have a learning time out where they can find a quiet place to sit and watch a video on the expected behavior or procedure for any given circumstance.

8. Self Check Work: Create answer checks for any work that has a correct answer, as much as I am not a fan of worksheets, this idea works well with math. Even better, have a QR code on the top of the worksheet linked to a video explanation of how to do the work, like algorithms. After a student checks their answer, they can watch a "How To" video if they did not get the answer correct before moving on to the next problem.

Making a QR Code: To make a QR Code on an iPad, I like to use QR Reader or Qrafter (Not all options are free when using Qrafter). All you need to do is click create, once in the app, and then choose if you want the QR Code to send to a person's device, to a web address, phone number, simple text, GEO location, email address, etc. You can email the QR Code to yourself to print it if you do not have a printer hooked up to your tablet. (Remember, all on-line videos have an unique web address.) When on a computer I like to use a simple bookmarklet that I added to my browser tool bar or if I want to create a fancy QR Code I use Visualead or QRHacker. Great Video on QR Code Creating.

Reading a QR Code: To read a QR Code on an iPad, I like to use QR Reader or Qrafter. 1. Click on a QR app. 2. Then click on scan. 3. Lastly, put the code in the middle of the scanner screen. Sometimes you have to move the iPad a little to get the code to scan. The website will open up within the QR app, but you also have the option to open up any site in Safari or another browser if you click on the share button. I don't really scan on a computer, however there is software to download if your computer has an iSight camera.

Photo Gallery of ideas:

Ms. Burnell, 2nd Grade, Holiday Memory Writing Activity

Mrs. Melcher, 2nd Grade, Book Review

Mrs. Melcher, 2nd Grade, Algorithm Poster

Ms. Nason, Grade 3, Penguin Project

Ms. Nason, Grade 3, Add Voice to a Writer's Notebook

iPad Cart

Friday, January 17, 2014

New Apps for SAD6 iPads

Below is an email message that I sent to my staff (K-5 teachers) today.

I have added a few new apps to all of the carts.

*ScribblePress - A fabulous book creating app with excellent art tools, stickers, and the ability to import photos. The template has a Title Page, Story Section, and Author Page. Books can be exported to iBooks or sent by email. More info or More info

Story Me - The app that I raved about recently. Students can create comic strips and share easily.

Zalairos Adventures by Skoolbo - This app is loaded with 25 different read along chapter books. 

*Green Screen by Do Ink - Capture videos of students in front of a green screen and then add any background you want. Your students can be in the Rain Forest, in front of the White House, or even on top of a mountain.

Funny Movie Maker - Use your mouth on any picture and record your voice. An extremely fun creation app. Students will love to say their multiplication facts, describe a project, or state their vocabulary words & meanings.

Number Pieces - A virtual set of Base Ten blocks.

Chicken Coop Fractions - A fun way to work with and learn about fractions.

Geoboard - A virtual geoboard. No more flinging rubber bands. :0)

The two starred items above are paid apps and have been also added to your classroom iPads.

Have a great long weekend!
Nicole Gleason
Technology Teacher/Integrator SAD#6
BlogWebsite, and Wiki
George E Jack, Steep Falls, Edna Libby, and HB Emery Schools

In the final analysis it is not what you do for your children but
what you have taught them to do for themselves that 
will make them successful human beings. 
Ann Landers

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

NWEA/MAP Web-based Testing

During the month of January I will be proctoring NWEA/MAP tests in all four of my elementary schools. In the past we have used software that is downloaded onto computers to administer the test, but this year the test is on-line. A secure browser, provided by MAP, needs to be downloaded onto each computer. Other than that, testing is web-based or quoted from my new favorite movie, The Internship, "on the line".

There is always a learning curve when trying stuff for the first time, so I would like to share some of the things I have learned so far to help make the testing experience a bit smoother for any educators that have to administer web-based NWEA/MAP testing.

1. Only one testing session can be run at a time, per educator account. Often some students do not finish within the allotted 70 minutes that classes are scheduled to be in the lab testing. In the past I have allowed the students to remain with the next scheduled class to finish testing by pausing their test and then once the next class is ready to test the students from the previous class can continue testing. The best way to continue with this practice within the new system is to suspend the unfinished tests, start a new session with the next class, and then add the students that need to finish their test to the new testing session.

2. Test session names are randomly created. If you get an awkward name, end the session and start over. I had one session come up as swore4646.

3. Have students log into the session first before you go over the instructions. The first time I tested a class, I did not realize that it would get to a point where students have to wait for the proctor to confirm testing to begin. Once I get students to the place where it asks for students to wait for a proctor, I then go over the instructions.

4. Great resources: Testing Step by Step and Student Practice Plus Prep

Happy testing!