Enhancing a Barnaby Bear book with Technology

I know plenty of EYFS and KS1 classrooms have a Barnaby Bear. A teddy bear that spends every weekend with a child from the class. Usually, a book goes with the bear and parents are encouraged to document what happens over the weekend and this is then shared back in class.

Last weekend, my son Harry came home with his class teddy! We had a great weekend which we documented in the book by printing some photos, but as you would probably guess I couldn't just leave it at text and images. I wanted to use technology to enhance what can be done with the book.

Firstly, I wanted to document Harry's recount of the weekend. As he isn't able to write yet, I used the app Audioboom to record some audio of him talking through his weekend. This was uploaded online and turned into a QR code which was printed and stuck in the book.

For me, this is a simple but effective way in which younger children can contribute more to the book. It has so many other uses in the classroom.

On the Saturday afternoon as the rain poured outside, we decided to take Barnaby on some adventures using Greenscreen. It was great fun! Using the app Doink Greenscreen, the children recorded themselves swimming in the ocean, exploring space, on the beach and surrounded by snow. We took some pictures and printed these in the book. We then used Aurasma to link the greenscreen video to the image in the book. When scanned the following video is played -

I also uploaded the video to YouTube and created a QR code in case the teachers or other parents didn't have Aurasma. The finished pages in the book looked like this - 

Using a QR code reader app and Aurasma, the book can be brought to life! This is what it looks like -

Along with QR codes and Aurasma, teachers could also use Padlet to create a Padlet wall that parents could upload photos or videos and add text sharing what they do with Barnaby. With a Padlet wall, it automatically creates a QR code which can be printed and stuck into the front of the book. 

Padlet walls can be kept private and teachers can then share them on their whiteboards with the rest of the class. You can also use Padlet to create a 'Show and Tell' wall that children can contribute pictures and ideas to which again can be shared with the class.

Flipagram is another app that can be used to document adventures and again linked through QR codes. I have previously blogged about ideas for using Flipagram in the classroom. You can read it here - http://mrparkinsonict.blogspot.co.uk/2015/03/making-most-of-flipagram-in-classroom.html


  1. Austin, our class bear, likes to get out and about: https://www.facebook.com/austinthebear


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