The Perfect Keepsake for Your Students!

QR code postIt will be hard to outdo the Christmas gifts given to my student families last year. The idea came to me when I saw that it was possible to link a video to a QR code and print the codes on stickers.

FYI: 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 information encoded on a QR code can be text, a URL link or other data like a video.

I bribe my students with Music Money. (Read more about it here.) They are given the chance to shop and spend their hard-earned cash various times throughout the year at my studio store and as a result, they accumulate many trinkets and gifts.  Because of this bribery system, it seemed appropriate to give the parents of my students a gift instead for the holiday season. A handmade item crafted by their adored, budding musician seemed appropriate and definitely more meaningful than any store-bought item. This line of thought triggered the idea of students designing cards with QR code stickers for their parents.

It was important for this project to be completed without the parents knowing about it so all the creative work was done in my studio during Music Tech Time. If you are not familiar with that lesson format you can learn more about it in my book, The iPad Piano Studio. In a nutshell, students spend 30 minutes at the keyboard with me and 30 more minutes reinforcing what was taught with the help of the iPad and the power of apps.

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Students were more than happy to tap into their creative juices and made a card for their parents during this Music Tech Time. Plenty of holiday stickers and markers were supplied. In addition, I asked each one to write a note to their parents about what life would be like without music. This generated some touching and humorous moments.

Taking videos of each student was a huge motivating factor. Most "recording artists" asked for numerous retakes so they could capture a perfect performance. All this extra practice made for rock-solid recital performances. 

After each student performed at the Christmas recital, I presented them with their card featuring the QR card picssticker and they proudly delivered the card to their parents. Parents eagerly pulled out their smart phones to view their young maestro's original master piece.

Interested in giving your parents and students a gift that features a genuine flavor yet savvy twist AND guarantees student practice?

Then you need Video QR Codes Christmas Cards!

Here are the specific steps to create this unique holiday gift for your student families

1) Purchase blank cards and envelopes, holiday stickers and markers from a local craft store.

2)  Ask students to decorate a card and write a note about what life would be like without music and of course thanking their parents for music lessons!

3) Record each student playing a favorite Christmas piece with your iPad camera. After choosing a favorite, edit, add text and brand the video with your studio logo or name using iMovie or the editing tools provided by YouTube.

4) Upload the video to your YouTube channel. Follow this link for  a sample of one of my student videos. 

5) Create an account at MTTCampus This will allow you to purchase and generate a isaac card 2special Video QR code for each student’s video.

6) Once a code is generated for each student, download and print onto an Avery Label template that fits Avery’s EZ Peel White Square Labels found at most office supply stores.

7) After printing the codes on the stickers, place the appropriate sticker on each card and seal the envelope.

8) Bring cards to your Christmas recital and give the hand-crafted yet tech-savvy cards to proud parents.

9) At the end of the recital, provide directions to parents on how to access an app to scan the QR code and enjoy the video of their young maestros’ performances. Tip: include directions on the recital program, too.

Yes, a number of steps, but the peeps at Music Teachers Technology Campus are there for you every step of the way. This project is worth the effort as my student families were so pleased to have a treasured video literally in the palm of their hand.

Don't Forget YOUR parting FREE gift!

Enjoy the score to an original arrangement of "Go Tell it On The Mountain." Follow this link to receive yours. Merry Christmas!