Monday, March 23, 2015

Sinking in SAMR, #SOL15

Sometimes I consider myself innovative and tech savvy. I love tackling digital learning tasks with students, and I am not afraid to try out the latest app or web 2.0 tool. However, after thinking about an upcoming lesson through the lenses of of the SAMR model, I am beginning to question my current level of integration. With my own students, I have yet to move beyond substitution and augmentation. The graphic below is helping me better understand this complex framework, and I am slowly accepting the fact that my control issues prevent me from allowing students to own the learning. As long as I remain the "all-knowing teacher" the students I serve remain handicapped and disempowered. How do I move past, "Look at this cool new app!" to "Create the unimaginable!"

Thankfully, there are wise folks in the world like Carl Hooker who offer an alternative perspective. His image of the SAMR pool reminds me we don't have to swim in the deep end all the time to be successful. I'm still in the shallow end, and I'm slowly inching my way into deeper waters. The safety rope comforts me, and as an adult who still holds her nose and doggy paddles, it may take a while before I venture out into the bottomless depths.

This new thought process for technology integration reminds me a lot of Brian Cambourne's Conditions for Learning. I've heard his research referenced at several literacy conferences I've attended, and I'm attempting to find a common thread between these two systems of thinking. So much forethought and mental energy goes into a single lesson plan, and sometimes I feel like my head might explode. Ultimately, I think I am over-analyzing because I haven't fully embraced the idea of approximations and first attempts. I want it to all make sense instantly, and I want affirmation I am doing it right. I suppose that is a byproduct of being raised in an educational system that valued compliance over creativity. Big ideas simultaneously energize and deplete me. How do other educators harmonize, balance, and mesh all these things when attempting to shift instructional practices?

1 comment:

  1. I don't even know what half of those words I just read mean. So, I think you are doing great for yourself. Don't doubt yourself and give your self some credit!

    See you in the morning!