Aurasma – making it work in the classroom

Over the last two weeks I have been trialling Aurasma in my classroom, thanks to Nathan Jones’ brilliant presentation at VITTA. My students absolutely love it and created some amazing work around their inquiry unit ‘Ancient Civilisations’. Here are a couple of tips that make using Aurasma in your classroom a lot easier.

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1. Practice time

As soon as my students saw Aurasma they wanted to play with it. Most of my students had already played with it at home, so they knew how it worked and wanted to get on with their work. Those students who had not used it at home wanted to make it look like clowns were appearing in the classroom, or robots appearing on top of their friend’s heads. These students did not want to start working because they wanted to play. Allowing students ten minutes to play with Aurasma and learn to use it through creating a silly AR saves time later, as students will get straight on to the work.

2. Lighting

Ensure that you both create and use your ARs in bright lighting. My classroom does not face the sun, and does not have very large windows. The result is that on overcast days it is quite dark, even with the lights on. We created our ARs on a sunny day, so they worked well, but when we tried them again on a darker day we were unable to make them work on any of our iPads. When creating them, think about what the ‘normal’ lighting is in your classroom and try and create them when that lighting is available. When displaying students work that is linked to an Aurasma, try and put it under lights or in the sunlight, so that the app will work effectively.

3. Obvious markers

You do not need the Aurasma symbol to make an Aurasma work, as some people assume, but you do need to make sure that trigger you use is unique. If it is not unique enough the app will not recognise it and it will not work. Drawings, photos borders, different colours and headings all help the app recognise the trigger. If the trigger is too simple it may work some of the time but not all of the time, or not at all. If it is a poster, having students write in thin texta instead of pen or pencil helps.

The Humanities wall that is full of AR triggers.

The Humanities wall that is full of AR triggers.

How have you used Aurasma with your class? What tips or tricks do you have when using it?

Rebecca Davies

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