QR Codes Make THE Perfect Presents for Your Students

Perhaps you’ve seen my “teases” about this post on Facebook? (BTW: Please LIKE my Facebook page here if you card picshaven’t done so already.)

Maybe  you’ve purchased my book and noticed the QR codes sprinkled throughout? (Please purchase my book here just in time for Christmas!)

There is a point to my shameless plugs above. I dropped some hints about the PERFECT gift for my students  this year over social media channels and this gift includes QR codes just like those found in my book.

Let me explain…

Last year I offered my students a craft to make as a gift to their parents. Read all about it here. As they are already spoiled by my Music Money store, I thought it best that I provide a gift to the parents during the holiday season. They are the true peeps to recognize as they pay the bills and drive the taxi. In keeping with a crafty theme, each student created a hand-made card with a special space for a QR code sticker.

To keep things clear, I’ve made a list featuring all the steps for this unique holiday gift.

jack's photo 21) I purchased blank cards and envelopes, holiday stickers and new markers from Hobby Lobby. As I’m a fan of coupons, I used the Hobby Lobby app for a 40% off discount on one item.

2) Each student spent lab time (read my book to learn more about lab time) decorating a card which included a note about what life would be like without music. I decided upon this theme after writing my blog “What the Music Industry 368335-youtube-captureCan Learn From Milk.”

3) During lessons, I recorded each student with my new iPad Air. After choosing our favorite take, I uploaded the video via the YouTube Capture app.

4) Once uploaded, I edited the video at my YouTube channel. YouTube has options to edit, trim and annotate uploaded videos. My, my how things have gotten easier. Here’s a sample student video:

5) Next, I created an account at Dynamicqrs.com, a company built by my fine friend, co-publisher and business partner, Tom Folenta. Setting up an account at this site allowed me to generate a special QR code for each student’s recent video.  By now you may be asking, just what is a QR code?

photo 1Per the site: “A QR code (short for Quick Response) is a specific matrix bar code (or two-dimensional code), readable by dedicated QR bar code readers and camera phones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on a white background. The informationQR_label_larg encoded can be text, URL or other data.

6) Once a code was generated, I downloaded the black and white matrix and copied each one onto an Avery Label template. I purchased these QR code stickers at Staples.

7) The stickers were placed on the appropriate place on each card and then I sealed the envelope.

char card 28) The cards were brought to the Friday evening recital and after each student performed, I gave them their card to present to their parents.

9) Parents were emailed a link to a QR code reader app just in case they did not have one.

A number of steps, I confess, but worth the effort as I’ve NEVER heard of a unique card/gift quite like this. My students’ parents were so pleased to have a treasured video literally in the palm of their hand.

Does this creative twist with technology interest you? If so, Tom and I hope to offer this option at isaac card 2our MTTCampus.com (Music Teachers Technology Campus) site in 2014.

In the mean time, check out Tom’s latest venture for video Christmas cards. His QR codes are dynamic which means he can load more and different videos on the same code. Tom’s ingenuity developed a 12 Days Before Christmas video card featuring a new concert artist for each day within the same card! Learn more and order your cards here.

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Leila Viss

Creative Pianist, Piano Teacher, Organist, Blogger and Author of The iPad Piano Studio