The Missouri Reader WINTER ISSUE Vol. 44, Issue 1 - Page 26


Children throughout their lives develop four kinds of vocabulary: listening vocabulary, speaking vocabulary, reading vocabulary and writing vocabulary.

Using a Quick Response (QR) Code encourages students to engage in the learning while digitally problem solving through the content. The QR image (such as ) includes text and/or links to the viewer. Teachers offer QR Codes online as a way to predetermine appropriate access for various content areas. Students can access activities such as scavenger hunts, webquests, and research safely and independently by simply opening their cameras. Though the content provided on a QR Code can easily be accessed through a simple link, the ability to implement a tech-savvy QR Code is engaging to students. They love to use the features on their computers and phones. This provides an engaging classroom, as QR Codes are one more tool in the teacher’s tool belt while providing information to the individual student or class as a whole unit.

When documentation of students’ understanding of course content and learning goals are required, an Interactive Notebook ( might be an appropriate method of virtual formative assessment. This platform allows teachers to assess students’ success as they individually engage, reflect, and take ownership for their learning. Many formats and applications can be used for Interactive Notebooks. Many are available for purchase but any teacher, with a little research, can figure out how to build their own notebook. It is important to consider, it might take extensive training to implement interactive notebooks effectively in a virtual classroom (Pennington, 2016). However, the result can be a solid compilation of information, research, and discussion that any virtual classroom would find helpful.

During these unprecedented times in our educational system, it is imperative educators champion the responsibility to research and provide solid online best practice, which meets the needs of virtual learners. Many resources available on the web (as well as shared here) are user friendly and easily accessible to teachers and their students. Virtual learning tools can be used and really work to enhance students’ engagement and have a positive influence on their interest in the learning process overall. Consequently, teachers should be encouraged and supported as they consider methods to evaluate and adjust the virtual and digitally organized instruction to advocate for their students. (Chantal, R., Amiet, D. et al, 2017, p. 3).


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Pennington, M. (2016). 10 reasons not to use interactive notebooks. Pennington Publishing: El Dorado Hills, CA.

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Dr. Julie Hentges is the Program Coordinator, MSE Education Curriculum & Instruction at the University of Central Missouri (UCM) in Warrensburg, Missouri. She earned her Doctorate in Education from Walden University with an emphasis on teacher education. As a certified elementary teacher and K-12 reading specialist, she brings her passion for literacy into the classroom

Dr. Kristina Schuler has been in the field of education for 27 years. During most of her career, she spent her time working with intermediate students teaching all four core subjects. After receiving her doctorate degree from the University of Missouri - Columbia, Dr. Schuler accepted a position with the education department at the University of Central Missouri.