Back to the Basics


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The above photo was shared to me by my peer Kaity Fain. As I was looking for ways to introduce SAMR and TPACK, I thought this metaphor of SAMR was cute and relatable.

This past week our cohort explored what skills, resources and processes we could utilize as we begin to co plan learning activities our learning partners want to improve on. 

This covers the following ISTE Standards:

ISTE-C Standard 1: Visionary Leadership

d.Implement strategies for initiating and sustaining technology innovations and manage the change process in schools and classrooms

ISTE-C Standard 2: Teaching, Learning, and Assessment

f. Coach teachers in and model incorporation of research-based best practices in instructional design when planning technology-enhanced learning experiences

I noticed a common theme in the resources we read this week. The readings really emphasized the importance of a learning and standards outcome focus as opposed to solely technology focused. This has been an important recurring focus throughout this entire quarter, as it should be. In our reading, “Peer Coaching: Unlocking the Power of Collaboration,” it’s mentioned that:

Too often, teachers still plan their lessons around technology instead of putting learning first. What these teachers need to make the connection is a collaborative partner, a coach, who will help them focus first on learning and then chose the technology that will help students reach the learning goals (Foltos 2013).

With our essential question in mind, I began to explore what skills I could help my learning partner develop to ensure that learning activities remained objective focused as opposed to technology focused. I’ve noticed as I began to adopt a coaching role, that it is easy for technology to be the sole focus of objectives, goals and learning activities. Throughout the corner I have seen many great resources that have taught me how to put learning as the first and most important focus, but I needed a way to portray this to my learning partner.

Through role playing and real life exercises with each other, our cohort has been exploring and utilizing a learning activities checklist from Les Foltos’ book “Peer Coaching: Unlocking the Power of Collaboration.” I find this a powerful resource that really helps you evaluate a learning activity in every aspect. However, I do think if it is new to someone, it can be slightly intimidating.

Back to the Basics

During the week, I tried to reflect on what resources helped me a lot in the beginning of the DEL program. I remember feeling slightly overwhelmed with all of the ideas and concepts I was being introduced to. I felt grateful for the resources that presented these concepts to me in an easy, clear way. The TPACK and SAMR models, were two resources that really felt applicable to everything we were exploring. Once they were presented to me in a way that was clear, I began to understand our learning in a more complete way.

I decided I will introduce my learning partner to the TPACK and SAMR models before we start to utilize the learning activity checklist in our planning. I think a clear understanding of the framework of content and technology will make the learning activity checklist more applicable and useful. Below are two videos made by Common Sense Media that provide an introduction to the TPACK and SAMR models:

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Foltos, L. (2013). Peer coaching: Unlocking the power of collaboration.

Introduction to the TPACK Model. (n.d.). Retrieved November 27, 2016, from

Introduction to the SAMR Model. (n.d.). Retrieved November 26, 2016, from

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