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What is a QR Code?

QR Code is an abbreviation for Quick Response Code. It is a special kind of barcode that anybody can scan with a smartphone app that usually directs the user to a website. (You can download any number of free apps for iPhone and Android or for tablets)  QR Codes have gained a lot of popularity in commercial marketing because they are so easy! Rather than typing in an entire web address, the user merely scans the code and they are there! So easy. They are free to make using a QR Code Generator likehttps://www.the-qrcode-generator.com/ They are free to scan using an app like these:
You just hold up your device with the app. The app reads the QR code with a scanner. The QR code tells your device where on the internet to go.
Many teachers are using QR codes for research in the classroom.  Students might participate in a scavenger hunt trying to find pieces of information.
Here are a couple of QR codes that you can scan and see where they take you.
So what does a QR code do?  It communicates with a device and sends that device to a particular url or website.  A QR code is a way to use patterns to transmit information. 
Fourth Grade Teachers, this blog post is part of a resource I have designed for NGSS 4th grade standard, NGSS 4-PS4-3 Generate and compare multiple solutions that use patterns to transfer information.
This blog post is one of the links I have students go to as they are learning about QR codes.  The rest of the unit can be found 
Lesson for NGSS 4-PS4-3
This resource includes four exciting hands-on activities to address this tricky standard.
Students will learn about Morse Code, how it works and how they can use it to send a message. They will also consider why it is no longer being used. Students will create their own simple telegraph machine using a simple electrical circuit and use it to send and receive messages. Materials needed for this include a battery, electrical wire, electrical tape and a light bulb. And of course students will learn about QR codes.  How to make them, what they do, how to scan them and how to use them. 
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