Students Are Independent Learners When Using QR Codes

I have found that incorporating QR codes into various assignments and activities, not only peaks student engagement but it allows for independent learning.  In addition, it allows the teacher more time to work individually with students without interruption.

While I have several different activities that include QR codes, one that I use on a daily basis, is  Solve & Check.  These task cards focus on a specific math skills and are available for various math topics.  I allow students to work on their own or with a partner.  The fun level of this activity increases because each card has QR codes.  This allows students to check their answers immediately.

Today, I would like to share how to put a QR Coded Solve & Check set together and use in the classroom.  I will also compare a QR Coded Set to a Color Coded Set.

With a Solve and Check set you get a total of 32 cards, 4 cards per sheet.  Each card has a math  problem in the center and four possible answers.  Accompanying each possible answer is a QR code.

Also included is a cover card, which can be placed in front of the numbered cards.  This card serves to help keep sets organized.  Also included on this page are 3 ‘break’ cards.  I usually place these cards randomly in the stack of 32 problem cards.  When a student comes to one of these cards, they can scan the QR code.  The scanned QR code will reveal some encouraging words such as “You are doing great!”  While the break cards are not necessary, they do add a little something extra to the activity.

Pictured above is what I like to call a ‘cover-up’ page.  Each student engaged in the activity will want one of these ‘cover-up’ cards (4 are included).  Turn the ‘cover up’ card, so the only QR code visible is for the one you want to scan.

 Each student will need a 2-sided recording sheet.

A 2-sided, color coded, answer key is also provided.

After copying all the pages on regular copy paper, I laminate the 32 cards, the ‘cover-up’ page, the card cover and break cards page as well as the answer key.  While I can use card stock, I have found that regular white copy paper works just fine.

 Next, I cut apart and trim the cards. I like to start by trimming around the outside of the page.

Then I trim down the center.

And finally, I cut each card apart.  I find that cutting in this order helps make sure the cards are more uniform in size.

Once the cards are cut apart, this activity is ready to use!  Students use a recording sheet to work the problem found on each card.

After they have an answer, students check to card to see if the answer they got is one of the 4 choices.  If it isn’t, they go back and check their work.  If it is one of the four answers printed on the card, the student uses the ‘cover-up’ card to hide the 3 QR codes that they believe are incorrect.  The only QR code showing is the one that correlates with what they believe is the correct answer.

Using an electronic device with a QR reader, the student will scan the uncovered QR code on the card.  I prefer to use i-nigma as my QR reader.

 After scanning, the student will receive immediate feedback as to whether or not their answer is correct.

In this case, the student’s answer was correct!  If it had been incorrect, they would have received either a “Sorry”, “Try Again” or “Nope”.

 Once the student has confirmed their answer is correct, they color the recording sheet with the corresponding color that outlines the answer on the card.

In addition, the student may use the answer key to confirm their answer is correct.

 As stated earlier in this post, there are also ‘break’ cards included.  The student will come to these cards as they are working their way through the 32 problem cards.

 When they do, they simply scan the large QR code located in the center of the break card.

Once scanned, the student will receive an encouraging message.

What I like about this activity, is that the students have everything they need at their fingertips.  This leaves me free to work individually with students that are struggling with a concept.

Now, I realize that not every classroom has an electronic device available to scan QR codes.  With that in mind, I created the very same activity but instead of having QR codes, each card is color coded.

The process is exactly the same, but instead of scanning a code, the student solves and then colors the appropriate color on the recording sheet.

Without the QR codes, immediate feedback is not available.  So, instead, the student works through the problems.  Once finished with a predetermined number of problems, the student will check the color-coded answer key to see how they are doing.

In addition to working at their desks or with a partner, I have had great success taping these task cards down the hallway walls.  Students grab a clipboard, pencil, recording sheet and a QR scanner and head to the hall.  Just be sure to provide a large enough space between the cards or you may have students that gather and discuss topics other than math, lol!  They love these so-called ‘task card relays’…and it peaks the anticipation of younger students.  They can’t wait to be THAT math class!

Happy Solving and Checking to all!

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