Leicester Teachmeet #TMLD14 QR codes for paired reading

My presentation for Leicester Teachmeet on 18 March 2014 at CrownHills School, Leicester. This was based on a teachtweet video I made earlier this year. I added a little extra about teaching algorithms too.

Livestream recording of the teachmeet now available thanks to Leon @eyebeams

This was an idea that David Mitchell described that he used in school, I tried it this autumn, and it worked really well!

QR codes and paired reading

During daily guided reading with my year 4 class, which I run as a carousel of activities, my children can use the class iPad on a rota. A different pair of children each day get to use the iPad with a focussed task. During the first half term of the school year, their task was to find a book from our year 1 classroom and record themselves reading it (with good expression!) using Audioboo (a free sound recording app).  They photograph the cover of the book and publish the recording. The Audioboo recording is set to publish directly to our class blog (in Audioboo settings set to publish to your blog). We then make a QR code to link to the blog post and print out a copy. The paper QR code is stuck into the book and placed back in the year 1 classroom. The year 1 children can use their class iPad to scan the QR code and listen to the story book being read aloud.

Example – Where’s my teddy? Read by Eden and Lewis.

screenshot of blog post audioboo player

Slides on Google

links:

Audioboo app: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/audioboo/id305204540

QR code reader app https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/qr-reader-for-iphone/id368494609?mt=8

QR stuff screenshot: http://www.qrstuff.com/

iPad image http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPad_Mini

Audioboo image http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8096/8545410166_5e15c53777_z.jpg

Algorithms

I will soon be changing schools, starting at Rushey Mead Primary school as ICT lead after Easter. I am very much looking forward to the challenge and for my interview lesson I taught a group of year 5 children how to write an algorithm. The main idea was to show that although the new ICT curriculum has a lot of technical language in it, some of it can be taught from what teachers already know how to do well. Algorithms are basically instructions. I used padlocks and a mixed set of keys to get the children to write some instructions on how to choose a key to open the padlock. They included a decision (does the key fit?) to make the change from simple instructions to become an algorithm.

I was directed (by lots of lovely people on twitter) to several great resources whilst researching the lesson:

Phil Bagge’s Code it.

A treasure trove of planning, ideas, videos and very practical help for anyone worried about the new computing curriculum. If you haven’t seen sandwich bot, you are missing a treat!

Computer science unplugged

Teaching computing without a computer. Does what it says on the tin 🙂

This started me thinking about cross curricular links, with maths and science. I’ve started to work computing language into my maths lessons, to get children to realise the connections between sorting and maths. We were playing 20 questions to guess a number (is it odd? does it have 3 digits?) and I pointed out that Google search works by a process of sorting that many of the children resorted to. They realised that if they knew it was a 3 digit number, they could ask if it was bigger than 500 and narrow down the search options quickly, by picking the mid point to ask about each time (is it bigger than 250?). Branching databases in science are another perfect opportunity to link to computing.

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