Tech Be Nimble
As much as I'd like to keep summer around for a little longer, there's no denying that it's back-to-school time. Many schools have already headed back, but a few of us are lucky enough to be on the after-Labor-Day calendar. Across the US, teachers, students (and their parents), and college freshmen are getting to know their new digital devices. Some of them are getting great training and support, learning how to maximize the affordances of technology to make teaching and learning easier and more engaging. Others are not. So, in the spirit of "being the change," I've planned a short series of back-to-school posts to share some ideas about making the most of edtech tools.
To start, I'd like to introduce a framework some readers may already be familiar with: the SAMR model. Developed by Dr. Ruben Puentedura, the SAMR model is a way of thinking about what happens when we add technology to a learning environment. Here's a visual depiction that's particularly powerful (and easy to follow):
As I've written before, I think the only way to fix what has become a frustratingly broken system of public education is through transformation. We can't just plug in a device and hope for the best. We have to redefine, fundamentally, what we're doing in teaching and learning. The SAMR model reminds us to use edtech to reach for innovations that were "previously inconceivable." I like this visual because it applies equally well to teachers, students, parents, and those in higher ed. I'll be following up in the next few days with posts targeted at each of those subgroups. Stay tuned!
Needs change. Technology changes. The best educational technology stays nimble.