I know what many of you are thinking. “I don’t have time to learn a new curriculum” “I am way too busy to learn something new!” Trust me… Check out the video. It helps explain the SAMR model in 120 seconds. It may be worth your time.
Since the beginning of time man has always isolated learning new technology skills into solitary learning events. Cavemen spent time teaching their children how to make fire. Perhaps fire making was taught as a discrete subject for hundreds of years. As technology advanced, stone tools hit the market and sure enough, “HOW TO USE STONE TOOLS” became the focus and fire making was a thing of the past. When computers were invented thousands of years later, the trend is the still the same. Computer teachers taught computer class in a very discrete way. Classroom teachers expected that a computer teacher would teach any and all the relevant technology skills needed to be successful in life. However, in the past few years many school district shifted from technology skills being taught in a computer lab in isolation to the skills being integrated seamlessly into general classroom. Technology has shifted from being taught explicitly by an expert in the area of technology to becoming more of a fundamental tool for demonstrating student creativity and learning. The expectation now is that classroom teachers will authentically and appropriately embed technology into the culture of the classroom. It is now the classroom teachers responsibility to teach kids how to: word process, format documents, copy, cut & paste, design spreadsheets, blog, perfect world, this integration would happen seamlessly, without a problem. The reality of the situation is that technology is changing at such a rapid pace. To keep up with the change it is almost impossible. Not to mention the varying comfort levels that teachers have with using technology. As a classroom teacher myself, we always have an extensive list of responsibilities that they need to get accomplished. Many teachers feel that trying or implementing yet another thing is just too much to handle and give up. The effective integration of technology isn’t something that happens overnight. It takes practice and consistency. An answer to my prayers this year was understanding the SAMR model for integration.