It’s time to be honest with yourself … are these statements true or false?:

  1. After my grade completes their handwritten draft of a story/ report, they type their final copies using Microsoft Word.
  2. I have an interactive whiteboard and/or interactive screen where I display information and task details to my grade.
  3. My students sometimes use a laptop or desktop computer to listen to or read a text, website or online story.
  4. My kids use their tablets to take photographs, search the internet and use a selection of design apps.

If you answered true to the above statements that is fine; but if they are the only ways technology is used within your classroom, it may be time for some tech experimentation and risk taking!

But, where to start? You could begin with reading the Digital Technologies Curriculum. You could observe colleagues in their use of technology. You could begin planning to use tech as a team.

But, the most efficient way I have found, is through a method devised by Dr. Ruben Puentedura called the SAMR model.

The SAMR model is a fantastic tool to reference when you wish to implement technology for ways other than just substitution; the lowest tier of the model.

Here are some examples of how to apply the SAMR model in your classroom. This is an example of how one task can be extended using technology: 

  1. Substitution: Students complete a final draft of a written report using Microsoft Word, about a building they have designed.
  2. Augmentation: Create a PowerPoint with inserted images and hand drawn pictures of their design. This can include hyperlinks, which displays further information but also provides a method of branching (a component of the Digital Technologies Curriculum), which allows the user to select further information if required.
  3. Modification: Using a program such as SketchUp or Lego Digital Designer, students create a 3D version of a drafted design of their building structure, complete with imported models and moving components. The final version is filmed in 3D using an inbuilt tool bar function.
  4. Redefinition: The final draft of their model of a building, being completed using a 3D design program and printed using a 3D printer. Using an interactive document within a program such as Google Drive, students can share their design with others and experience ‘real-time’ collaboration and feedback.

Good luck and enjoy the challenge of using the SAMR model to redefine your teaching!