Today’s focus was centred around the use of QR codes within outdoors lessons. We explored the QR Scanner and Pic Collage applications. Alongside this, we considered the benefits of outdoor learning.
“Outdoor learning experiences are often remembered for a lifetime. Integrating learning and outdoor experiences […] provides relevance and depth to the curriculum in ways that are difficult to achieve indoors”, this excerpt from Education Scotland (2010), clearly identifies the long-lasting benefits that outdoor learning provides for children. They further go on to state that the outdoor environment provides children with several different experiences and that outdoor learning is believed to be; motivating, exciting, different, relevant and easily accessible.
Outdoor learning provides students with the opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge about a subject area that they may be struggling with. For example, a child may be struggling with problem solving in the classroom however, once the activities go outdoors this can often spark children’s skills. Thus, they are problem solving often without realising they are doing so. From this, the child could end up being a group leader and encouraging their peers, which may not have occurred otherwise.
After discussing the advantages of outdoor learning we moved on to link SHANARRI with outdoor learning. There are eight different aspects to the SHANARRI wheel which are as follows;
Myself and my partner considered how respect can relate to the outdoors and children in our classroom. From outdoor learning, children gain respect for the land/environment, people, animals and property. Alongside this, children feel respected due to being provided with trust and responsibility.
In the practical side of today’s lesson, we started by exploring the Pic Collage application. We were asked to create a themed collage, my collage was of my friend. We then discussed how to use the QR Code application and how to create QR codes for ourselves. Afterwards, we went outdoors as our lecturer had set up a QR code activity for us to complete, the activity was with regards to the social subject topic of Scotland. We had to scan the code and answer the question. For every question, we were then given a letter, at the end we had to look at all the letters and guess the word that it made. In this case, the word was “haggis”. Alongside doing this activity, we were given a second iPad to take pictures throughout and we created another collage using these pictures.
Upon arrival back to class, we were then given the opportunity to create our own QR code lesson. Myself and my partner based our around the science topic of mini beasts (Question sheet attached). This lesson is aimed for early level classes and the outcomes for this lesson are as follows;
- I have observed living things in the environment over time and am becoming aware of how they depend on each other. SCN 0-01a.
- I can explore digital technologies and use what I learn to solve problems and share ideas and thoughts. TCH 0-01a.
- In movement, games, and using technology I can use simple directions and describe positions. MTH 0-17a.
I am very excited to use this method of teaching whilst out in schools, I believe this is a fun and interesting was to engage children whilst they are learning. I thoroughly enjoyed the experience personally and I believe my classes will too. Overall, I think this is a great cross-curricular activity.
Education Scotland (2010) Curriculum for Excellence Through Outdoor Learning.