QR Code Orienteering



Today during lunch time I helped my students setup QR code readers on their mobile phones in preparation for an activity they will be completing in the coming weeks within my Outdoor Education class. In order to study the safety aspects and risk taking factors that need to be considered before completing outdoor activities, the students will be completing an orienteering course using their bikes as a form of transportation. However this is no ordinary course, here’s why…

  1. The students will be working in pairs using their mobile phones and their QR code reading software.
  2. The course will start with a single QR code, each pair will receive a different code so that they start at a different part of the course.
  3. Students will scan their codes which will then reveal the directions they need to dial into their compasses and a riddle that gives clues as to the location of the first marker and the next QR code.
  4. Half way throughout the course is a QR code with a difference, it contains a template for an SMS message that links directly to my mobile phone. Once scanned the students will send a text message that basically asks for the next clue, which will then be sent to them so they can complete the course.
  5. The final QR code links to a downloadable Microsoft word document that details the questions they need to complete around the practical experience as related to the course.

The kids are already super excited about this activity and are looking forward to the challenge of not only deciphering the QR codes but the riddles contained within them. To generate the QR codes I used the google generator then copied them into a word document that you can download here.

If you have any questions about QR codes or any great ideas you would like to share let me know. Id love to hear how you plan to use them in your classes.

15 thoughts on “QR Code Orienteering”

  1. Just listened to your podcast. ICT and PE. I am a primary PE teacher at the International School Manila Philippines, originally grew up in Tatura and went to Mooroopna Secondary College!! I have been teaching PE on and off for over 20 years. It is inspiring to read your blog and listen to your podcast. A friend who teaches ICT in London and used to work here in Manila (Darren Murphy) passed me your link. I am doing a Masters course and currently completing a technology course (definitely not as a digital native). After reading your blog I can see how it is important to bring the technology into all subject areas to engage children – including PE – you have showed me that they need not be mutually exclusive. I have entered a steep learning curve, have finally started a blog, made my first podcast, but was still not sure how to bring ICT into primary PE and actually not sure it was the right path to be going down – however I can see from reading your blog how this is so relevant to kids digital lives and no doubt much more engaging for them and it is possible to have a balance between physical activity and ‘on screen’ activity. Thanks for helping me bring my head out of the sand. Keep up the fantastic work!
    Amanda Pekin

  2. Hi I am Anne Mirtschin and teach at Hawkesdale P23 College and met you first on classroom2.0 My email is [email protected] Are you able to contact me back with your details as Counrty Education Project would like to make contact with you and also I would like to ask you about the Innovations Showcase for DEECD I really like the work that you are doing.

  3. I love this activity and can think of many uses. I hope you will post again when your project is done and let us know what worked and what didn’t. What you would change if anything.

    Question though is did you run into trouble with students not having phones that can handle QR codes or that didn’t have web access? Many of the students I work with have unlimited texting but no web access (to keep them from building huge mobile charges). Out of curiosity I just checked and my phone (2 years old) can’t support this. Were there issues with students having phones that don’t support the software at this point? (I know I need a new phone…)

  4. Hi,

    Great. Love it.
    A teacher in Switzerland did something similar some time ago. Here is my blog post:


    In this respect our new project DokoDare could also be very interesting => http://dokodare.kaywa.com

    With your class you could create new places. Every place has two communication channels : news, which is place related, and a people channel for everybody.
    So once you set up the places, we add the localization info and then the place is available on your mobile (with a map and all places nearby).

    See two related posts here:
    http://roger.kaywa.ch/p2272.html (an example of a restaurant with the dokodare sticker after the pic)

  5. Would be happy to organise this. Wondering what the time difference is between Melbourne, Victoria Australia and Scotland. How long would you like it to be? What is the group of teachers, currently teaching?

  6. Great. Thanks Jarrod. The time diference is you are 11 hours ahead of us here in Scotland, so we are 8:30 right now and you’re 19:30. I would like to tie your broadcast in with a sports staff training event – the organisation I work for is called Scotland’s Colleges – the main support unit for the 42 colleges in Scotland, and one of our roles is to bring college people together for events and workshops. The use of ICT is high on their needs agenda. The event might well be after our clocks change around Easter time, which would create a 10 hour difference. So, I suppose we would be looking at you do do a session around 9pm your time, which would be around 11am our time. Would that be possible? On a related note, I think it would be good at the event if they could have a copy of your 100+ technology book – maybe on memory stick, maybe printed. Do I just buy the number of copies necessary and then I’m clear of copyright? Thanks for now.

  7. That sounds great, will be more than happy to run a session at 9pm. Could also help people in other areas if you were happy. if you purchase the ebook you will get the download for all of the eBooks to then print or place on a USB. How many copies were you planning on purchasing?

  8. I bought the pdf last night, and have had a glance this morning, it has some great pointers. Thanks for your offer of further extending this to other subject areas – I support all the different Subject Networks of staff in the colleges, and some are very vibrant – e.g. hair & beauty , automotive and hospitality. I have had this thought in my mind for a while that , rather than bombarding people with loads and loads of tools that just over power them, focussing on a small suite of tools for the masses working together may return dividends. Maybe starting with sports is a good idea, but with a view to replicating the idea across other areas once success has been achieved. Have you worked with anyone in Scotland before?

  9. Hi Mark

    Thanks for your comment, Had you been in the activity in 2009 you would have realised that after scanning the QR Codes the students were given clues which had to be then followed using traditional compasses and orienteering skills. On arrival at the next QR Code, these were scanned to reveal videos with various challenges and further clues.

    Thanks for stopping by

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