Thursday, August 14, 2014

Brushing Up On Some SAMR
image from
Every year, our school division requires teachers to attend a technology-driven staff development day a couple of weeks before teacher work week begins. With all of our middle school students getting Chromebooks, much of the workshop was centered around ensuring students received the best possible blended learning experience.

Teachers were shown how to navigate curriculum based websites, how to enter information into the new electronic gradebook, and were also given a mini lesson on the SAMR model.

As an FYI, Kathy Schrock's Guide to Everything has some GREAT SAMR resources for teachers who are just getting their feet wet in SAMR land!

SAMR is an acronym for the following:
  • Substitution,
  • Augmentation,
  • Modification, and
  • Redefinition
Basically the premise is that the use of technology in education can be categorized into one of the above four methods. Let's take for example, the act of note taking.

In substitution, the technology is simply taking the place of a more traditional method - like using a word processor instead of a typewriter, or a piece of lined paper.
Through augmentation, the technology is basically a slight improvement on the traditional tool. For example, spell check and formatting tools make the process of note taking easier.  
The modification stage is where the real fun begins. The traditional notes become interactive. Students use the Internet to enrich their notes. Hyperlinks to interesting sites or video may be added. Images are added to the page. Students can utilize Google docs for sharing and peer editing.
Redefinition - The notebook turns into a blog that is published and shared with not only their classmates, but experts in the field. Questions and comments can be posted, leading to a deeper thought process. Students have an audience beyond their classroom.

As I observe classes this year, I would like to give some feedback based on the SAMR model. I want to ask teachers how they would rate their lesson. Would the lesson be more of an S, or more of an R?

I chose the topic of SAMR note taking because there is a debate in our school system right now. Even though students are going to be given Chromebooks, teachers want to be able to continue using paper notebooks because students retain more if they can cut and paste something into a notebook. Even as an administrator, I have found the best way to get my point across is by modeling my expectations. As I think about what this could look like, the idea of an "Interactive PLC Agenda" comes to mind. The agenda with videos, links, and pictures posted on our PLC site teachers can comment on and share. It's worth a shot. I'll let you know how it goes!

No comments:

Post a Comment