Card with QR code and Duck Soup book cover.

QR Codes and Children’s Video Books

Access free video books using QR codes - at school, at home, or on-the-go!

Storyline Online streams videos featuring celebrated actors reading award winning children’s books. These riveting video books are free! Teacher guides/activities are also available for each book.

Learn more about Storyline Online and to access their video books, go to the Storyline website. The video below explains Storyline Online.

An educator, Nadine Gilkison, created cards with individual QR codes for 66 video books. Each card displays a QR code on the left side and the colorful book cover on the right side. For durability, the cards should be laminated.  Punch a hole in the middle of the left side of the card and use a ring to store all the stories together.  These cards can be used in the classroom or they can be sent home. This is a super easy way for students – especially young students – to access the video books without having to navigate the Internet, choose a book, etc. 

The video below demonstrates how to modify the QR codes for students who are visually impaired by placing a different tiny foam shape in the top right corner of the card. These shapes can help students identify their favorite books. The shape also indicates the front side of the card and that the QR code is located at the opposite end of the card. The cards can be laminated and a braille word or two added to indicate the title of the book; however, be careful that the braille does not interfere with the QR code!

Using the QR Code

iOS devices running iOS 11 do not require a special QR code app; however, older versions of iOS do require a QR code app. With iOS 11, simply open the camera app and point the camera towards the QR code. The camera easily and automatically picks up the QR code. The QR code does not have to be centered – the camera app will capture the QR code from any angle. A popup will appear at the top of the screen stating, “Website QR code. Open ‘’ in Safari.”  Tap on this to activate the QR code. (With VoiceOver, right swipe once to move to the link and then double tap.) Internet access is needed to activate the QR code!

YouTube or SchoolTube

When opening your first Storyline Online video book, you will be asked if you want to use SchoolTube or YouTube. Ideally, SchoolTube is the best option for students as only age-appropriate videos are allowed on SchoolTube. However, if the student is using VoiceOver (a screen reader), the play button on SchoolTube is often not accessible.


Some videos will be muted. Tap on the mute symbol to hear the audio. 

Full Screen

Tap on the Enter Full Screen button to elimiate the extra text on the screen. Note: When viewing from an iPhone, the video does not display full screen like it does on an iPad.


Teacher Note: To use the cards at home, students will need access to a smart phone or tablet and since the videos are streamed, they will need to be on WiFi.

This video demonstrates how to access the video book, Duck Soup, using a QR Code. The video shows VoiceOver running on an iOS 11 iPhone.

To access Nadine’s QR Codes, go to Nadine’s website

Nadine has given permission to Paths to Technology to use her QR codes.

Collage of QR codes

By Diane Brauner

Young woman with a long cane.

How I learned to navigate my internship building with low vision

Google Lens logo
Tips and facts

Google Lens review for low vision

Smiling leprechaun

Lucky leprechaun lessons