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Teaching and Learning in the 21stC
Sep 14

The SAMR model has been around for a while, but I think it is time for a revisit. Most of us have been working with some element or other of 1 to 1 access, but has our pedagogy – the way we use the technology to teach in our classes – changed or shifted in that time? I would like you to take some time to reflect on how you are using ICT in your classroom. Think about which level of SAMR you are at, and what steps you can take to get to the next level.

First what is SAMR? was developed by Ruben R. Puentedura  who has shared a wealth of pedagogical development resources on his website.

 Substitution and Augmentation look at keeping things basic, but enhancing the learning, while Modification and Redefinition Transform Learning opportunities for our students.

Substitution

 In substitution technology is a direct replacement for non technical/digital tools. There is no real change to how the learning occurs. Function remains the same.

Examples: Students use the Internet to search information, as they would have done with encyclopedias in the past. They write up a word document assignment, adding in images collected from web sites and print this out as evidence of their learning.

AugmentationIn Augmentation technology is a direct tool substitute, however function is improved.

 

Examples: Using Google Maps or Nearmaps (in Australia) students can view  up to date changes of global issues. Learning is supported by students being able to view multi modal learning objects, and enhancing the function of the learning. Students are able to play online maths games, and get immediate feedback on results. improving the function through the immediate feedback.

ModificationModification allows for learning tasks to be significantly redesigned through the use of technology.

Examples:  Instead of presenting a poster on a famous person students can create a multimedia presentation, or website which includes video, text and images. This transforms the learning, and students develop deeper thinking about the subject when a range of modalities are used.

RedefinitionNew tasks, previously not even thought of or possible can now be created through the use of ICT.

Example: Students with a topic of civil unrest use Twitter to follow the hashtag #Eygpt (which was the hashtag used during the 2011 and recent civil unrest). They post a question onto Twitter with the Hashtags #Eygpt #Freedom and follow the responses. They end up connecting with a woman on the streets of Cairo, who is a lawyer, and Skype chat with her about what the civil unrest in Eygpt is about. (This is based on a true story) Students can connect with others around the globe and create truly powerful transformative learning opportunities.

I think I use all elements of the SAMR Model… the most transformative in my classrooms has been using Google Drive for students working on a collaborative task to be able to edit together (they are still getting their heads around how that one works, and it is easier for them to slip back into old paper based habits, but after a miss-saved document went missing they are starting to really see the benefits.) The live blogging we are doing sharing processes and products on our blog and on YouTube are pretty exciting. And creating electronic portfolios, as they develop their work – this has been fantastic, as they are finishing off their folios, realising they didn’t take photos, but they are all available on our group Flickr page. I am giving my students the option for producing a presentation on a Fashion Designer… they can present it as a website, podcast, powerpoint or keynote, which will be presented to the class.

So… you have the tools in your classrooms, the kids have the tools in their pockets, what is stopping you from transforming the way your students learn? The most important person in the classroom should be the learner, and we all know that the most engaging learning is the deepest. We are all learners…so add a comment here, particularly those who are using iPads, netbooks and laptops, to share with us which stage(s) you are up to? How are you transforming your classroom?

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