How to Create and Use QR Codes in The Classroom

TT QR code

There are many innovative and exciting ways to use QR codes in the classroom. A Quick Response code is a digital image similar to a bar code that can be scanned with a mobile device using a QR reader app. Download one of the many free QR reader apps. Open the app and tap scan. A camera box will appear on the screen. Hover the iPad over the QR code, so the QR code is inside the camera box. When the camera recognizes the code, the iPad will open a specific digital destination for a website, video, text and more.

There are many free QR code generator websites where you can create a QR code. These are my two favorites:

  • QRStuff.comThe free version site allows you to create QR codes in a variety of colors. They also have a URL shortener which creates an easier-to-read QR code.   
  • – The free version of this site allows you to add an image to the center of the QR code.

Here are the steps for creating a QR code:

  1. Find the video or website you want students to view.
  2. Right click on the URL in the address box at the top of the screen and click copy.
  3. Open a QR code generator like the two mentioned above and paste the URL into the appropriate box on the screen.
  4. You may choose the color for the QR code and in QR Code Monkey you may upload an image to go in the center of the QR code.
  5. In QR Stuff click on Download QR Code and in QR Code Monkey click Create QR Code and then Download.

There are many ways to use the QR codes in the classroom. Click here for ideas.

Effective Number Talks in Grades K-5

number talk picsA number talk is a short daily routine that helps students develop mental math skills, practice computational fluency and learn how to talk about math. The students are encouraged to use operations in ways that are meaningful to them, clarify their own thinking and apply number relationships. Number talks are for thinking and talking.          No worksheets required!

Number Talk Steps

  1. The teacher presents a computational problem.
  2. Using mental math skills students silently figure out the answer and put their thumb up when they have the answer.
  3. Three or four students share the strategies they used to arrive at their answers as the teacher writes them down.
  4. The class asks questions and discusses the strategies used. Finally they agree on an answer.

The Roll of the Teacher in Number Talks

  1. Value the thinking of all students.
  2. Select appropriate problems that focus on concepts the students have learned.
  3. Record, clarify and focus on what the students say. Ask questions like How did you figure that out? Who did it another way? Who solved it the same way? Does anyone have any questions for Sally? Sally tell us the first thing you did?
  4. Informally assess students and plan small group instruction where necessary.

Click here to download number talk sentence starters and hand signals.

number talk bubbles    hand signals

Informational Reading and Writing with Adventure Brochures

Here is an exciting informational reading activity. Collect a variety of adventure brochures from hotel lobbies and tourist centers. You can also encourage students to collect brochure when they go on trips. Have students choose a brochure of an adventure that interests them. Students can read the brochure and complete the writing and drawing activity. This is a great open-ended activity for literacy centers and also for homework. Click here to download these adventure writing frames.

adventure examples small.jpg

Fact Family Pizza

These pizza cards are a great way to learn fact families to 10. Here are some ways to use these cards:

  • Flash Card Game – Stack the pizza cards in a pile with the pizza side up. Students take turns drawing a card and covering one of the numbers. The first player to say the missing number gets to keep the card. When all the cards are gone, the player with the most cards is the winner.
  • Sorting– Students can sort all the cards with the same sum from 2-10. Then they can write all the combinations of ways to make each sum.
  • Recording Page – Have students spread all the cards on the table with the pizza side showing. They will take a card and write the fact family equations on the worksheet.

Click here to download a free set of fact family pizza cards and recording page.