23 July 2013

One very useful model...

Aaron Nolan, NZALT Auckland Regional Officer, has asked me if I would give a presentation about useful tools for the Language Classroom at the upcoming Auckland LANGSEM (August 24th, UoA, Epsom Campus).
While I would have favored to facilitate a tool "smackdown" à la Educamp, this does not fit well in the standard Conference schedule (I won't give up mentioning it again and again though!)
So what can I do in 30 minutes, which is the time I have available? I can forget hands on, but having said that, connected participants can always have a quick look at the tools if I share the links at the outset. I think it will be pretty fast paced too, so I will pre warn people and stress they can re visit the information at anytime.

Tools for learning or learning supported by tools? 
I will divide the 30 min into two distinct parts:
a-  tools for the students to learn, create and share
b-  tools for the teachers to connect, curate and share ( and post the link here when done!)
Well... This opportunity opens two doors:
- to stress the need and use for an eportfolio to aggregate creations, to share them with an audience, to receive feedback and to reflect on the learning.
 - to refer participants to one very useful model to help teachers integrate Education technology: the SAMR model.
Here is a very useful short video to explain it:

The SAMR model is useful in many ways:

- it raises awareness of how we use tools in the classroom,
- it indicates that there is progression, until it is seamlessly integrated and ubiquitous
- students direct their learning more effectively as tasks are redesigned and modification takes place
- it also expands the world of the teacher and students beyond the classrom
- above all it reminds us why we use tools in the classroom: for the learning to take place!

It is good to continue to investigate ever changing tools but it is important to keep focus on what learning needs to be achieved.

Helen Prescott  gave an effective 3 min presentation in the Primary context at TeachMeet#2  full of practical examples and links to the Key Competencies

The wheel below combines Blooms with SAMR and a wide range of Apps (while these are apps for Ipad, many are also available via the browser or on Android).
The "graduates attributes and capabilities" (my point of focus at the moment, at the heart of my eportfolio "dada") at center of wheel are closely reminiscent of the Key Competencies.

The action verbs and activities are also present in NCEA Languages Assessment standards, from which are derived a lot of the languages programmes in our NZ schools.
There certainly won't be anytime to generate any conversation during this presentation at the Langsem: shame. It would be a chance to start a conversation around how to assess and provide feedback on creations which are not merely text based or just spoken. I'll think of another media, wonder if the good old NZAFT listserve will be receptive this time?
Anyhow I hope that I can direct participants to this post and that it plants a seed for them to grow, as well as allow them to make connections with what is happening in their school and the world of education technology at large.

PS: Blogger's interface, like any other google tool, defaults to French as my IP is in France at the moment. Midly enerving but also rather irritating to have this mish mash of languages on the screen!


  1. No linguistic mish-mash here in dear old Hammy!!
    I'm very interested to share your planning for Auckland Langsem. Interesting really, as I know it's not the style of presentation that you would favour but I'm sure that it'll be valuable as a starting point to those who haven't dipped their toes very far into technological waters.
    I liked the SAMR model and found it very clear and somewhat parallel to SOLO taxonomy. It would be great to be able to print off a copy of that wheel and have it on the wall beside my desk, not to mention close at hand to assist me in explaining things more clearly to tech gainsayers.
    When I see the plethora of apps, I understand that I still have much to learn and keep up with. I guess it's really a matter of familiarising myself with them before deciding on which would be the most valuable for facilitating the 'redefinition' stage.

  2. Thank you for your feedback Ruth. I remembered we talked about SAMR over lunch one day lol! I too like its clarity. Familiarity with apps may be built from a short repertoire of tried and trusted ones chosen across the wheel for instance. What matters also is that students are given plenty of opportunities to explore which supports the aim of the task. I look forward to a conversation with you around how to assess a written production if it's not submitted on a .doc in paragraphs! It looks like we may have this chance sometime in term 3; and I could intro SAMR when working with myportfolio with your colleagues!


Let's go Back to the Drawing Board!