Messy Maps: A Foundation Stage Response

In the Winter issue of Primary Geography, the ‘Messy Maps’ feature was of particular interest. The article explained that using classroom objects to represent places or features of a locality is successful for teaching representation on maps. Children use 1 object to represent 1 place or feature. This takes the emphasis away from using Lego to build houses, and towards using single blocks to show single houses, for example. Classroom examples in the article took a Key Stage 2 focus, so I considered ways to use this concept with my Reception class, and as our Spring Term topic was ‘Homes’, there was a great opportunity to use maps with 4 and 5 year olds. 

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Quick Response Codes (QR Codes) in the Foundation Stage

QR Codes work like barcodes that webcams and mobile phone cameras recognise. They read the code and take the user to a website within a few clicks.

QuickMark is a software that I have used with webcams. When QuickMark recognises a QR Code, it displays the URL and users double click the link to open the website.

At my school, children in Key Stage 2 have been successfully accessing the internet using QR Codes. Instead of taking the device to the QR Code, Tom Barrett reversed this and let children take the QR Code to the device that read them; in his case a NetBook or laptop.

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