C4Wk1- Frameworks for Learning

We Are All Teachers of Technology

Technology integration is a way for teachers to enhance their lessons for better student engagement and understanding. Using the frameworks of TPACK & SAMR as a guide to better help everyone reflect and improve their lessons.

TPACK is the combination of one’s Content & Pedagogical knowledge with Technological knowledge. Content knowledge being what the teacher knows about their subject matter- or the what, Pedagogical knowledge being what the teacher knows about methods of teaching and learning- or the how, and the Technological knowledge being what the teacher already knows about technology. With the dotted outline being the different contexts that lessons take place in all around the world.


I found the SAMR Lesson Planner mind map extremely helpful to help distinguish the use of technology from going from just the enhancement stage to being a huge transformation in learning and lesson design.

These two frameworks of technology integration are similar as they aid teachers in organizing and outlining what teachers need to know and do in order to better understand how to integrate technology in their classrooms.

Yet they differ in their focus. TPACK focuses more on the knowledge that is needed to integrate technology in meaningful ways, whereas SAMR focuses on what technology integration specifically looks like.

This video is a great explanation of how the two models are intertwined.


Our school currently uses this framework to create a safe environment for learning. My own practices align with our learning principles as I continually strive to ensure that learning stays personal as we continually focus on ILP goals and learning how to pull ourselves out of the learning pit.  Most importantly having students feeling okay to take risks and learn from our mistakes.

We also strive to move towards the model of the T3 Framework for Innovation which claims to quadruple student achievement based on their research.

I do not have a preference, over any of them, but I do find the Technology Integration Matrix as another extremely helpful tool when describing and targeting your use for technology. From entry-level to transformational levels across 5 different areas of meaningful learning environments: Active, Collaborative, Constructive, Authentic, and Goal-Directed.  What I really liked about this matrix was that they were all things that can be equally done through on-line learning as well as for in person instruction.  Whether you’re at the adoption, adaptation, or infusion level the main goal being to reflect where you’re at and see what lessons and units one can begin to transform.

My Classroom

Technology integration has increased dramatically since moving to distance/digital learning. Even with hybrid learning, more and more classes are fully functioning via Google Classroom and other Google tools.

Limited face to face contact with our students has really allowed me to dive headfirst into the technology pool and model what it is like for our students to take risks and try new and creative ways for teaching and learning.

Photo taken from Pixaby

My own practice of technology integration would vary dramatically between my different classes. From my “pull out” support classes like “Learning Resource Class”(LRC) or “English for Academic Purposes” (EAP) would be evaluated entirely different than my co-taught Humanities and Math.

Having a small group of 3-6 students in LRC and EAP with an instructional aide has been very effective at trying out new technologies and changing things up day to day or week to week. We’ve been able to enhance numerous lessons and move away from the simple substitution of technology within lessons to more modifications happening for great transformations to take place.

Looking back at when I first started teaching, in the United States, and resources and professional development was let’s just say, limited, my growth in technology continues to develop more and more in the international setting. From overhead projectors being replaced with SmartBoards and carrying on with doing the same thing though slightly enhanced, with the tech. to completely re-looking at lesson design and putting the focus back on the Pedagogy and Content and only THEN exploring the ways that technology can enhance your craft.

Here’s a glace at my Collaborative Co-teaching Bitmoji Classroom- but more details on the transformation involved coming soon!

Where do you see yourself and the technology use in your classroom?

Author: Shalene

This is my 3rd year in Russia- teaching SEN at the Anglo-American School of Moscow. Loving life... and always learning.

5 thoughts on “C4Wk1- Frameworks for Learning”

  1. Hi, Shalene,

    I agreed with you since I read your post’s title. We are not all technology teachers, but I believe we all are (or should be to a certain degree) teachers of technology, just as you said it. I also know this is not true for every teacher in every school. Still, I find it hard or teachers in the international school’s world, with so many resources at hand, to put together a lesson that doesn’t, at least, model the use of technology for students.

    You mentioned your school already uses SMAR or TPACK. I couldn’t grab from the text which one precisely, maybe both. Not only that, but you also referenced the T3 Framework for Innovation, which I had never heard of before and found interesting and made me wonder about the use of tech integration models in my school. I believe there is some awareness of these models, but I doubt we have agreed on which one to use or even promote their use.

    I loved the image with your school’s vision for learning, specifically the Tech Vision Draft Learning Principle (I read it in one of your colleagues’ posts as the image in your blog is distorted). I revised all our Faculty Handbook and found nothing similar. I will use this information you had share as an example to promote, align, and consolidate these frameworks in my school.

    I am happy to read that tech integration has increased in your classroom and that you are moving up on the model from substitution to modification and more. I am sure your students are benefiting from that.

    Thanks for your post and for inspiring me!

    Loved your Bitmoji Classroom too!

  2. Hi Shalene,

    How’s everything going?

    I really enjoyed reading your blog post this week. It’s cool that your school is already using technology frameworks. My own school is getting there but it is definitely a work in progress. One thing that is frustrating for me is that my title 1 school in Santa Fe had much more tech available to students than my current school, which is the total opposite of your experience! The upside is that this forced me to do more with less, which has been interesting.

    One thing that really resonated with me was when you said, “I continually strive to ensure that learning stays personal as we continually focus on ILP goals and learning how to pull ourselves out of the learning pit.” I’m in a similar position to you and so I find myself constantly referring back to student’s goals and looking at the progress they are making. This often leads me to feel as though I do not have enough time to push past substitution and modification but I am starting to find more ways to do so. I found your post really inspiring and knowing that there are plenty of opportunities. My hope is that once I feel more confident with implementing our new reading intervention program I will begin to see more chances for integrating tech in exciting ways that support student growth.

    1. Thanks Simon, all good. Interesting how schools worldwide, in general, are all at completely different stages and approaches to almost everything. I find with the new Covid impacts to education, it has only made things in the SEN/LS/SPED word more difficult. Glad the implementation of the new reading intervention program is going well- sometimes I think we push too hard to incorporate tech. even when we don’t need to. I’d just enjoy the face to face interventions as long as you get to. We have gone back and forth from hybrid (1/2 face to face learning) to digital so many times, it’s getting harder to keep track. But like in the new resources for week two- whether it’s Direct Instruction, Project-Based Learning, or Inquiry-based every lesson and group of kiddos can change by which context you’re doing- so just keep on being awesome. Would love to see how you guys are handling ILP goals over there, as I feel here, it’s in a constant motion of change. Ensuring that you are feeling effective- though it sounds like you do a lot more with the substitutions and modifications- which at my school we are not allowed to do, due to a different variety of needs of the learners. Thanks again Simon. -Shalene

  3. Hi Shalane,

    it was very nice to read your detailed post with examples from your practice. The video with the parallel explanation about TPAK and SAMR concepts was very helpful and useful for me to enhance my understanding of those theoretical teaching concepts. It took me two days to take notes and digest first when I read for the first time about them. Now after watching the video, is so much clearer to me. Thank you.

    Your passion for teaching and adjusting to the students’ needs is amazing and infectious. Stay as you are. You are an inspiring and amazing teacher.
    I love your Bitmoji from your virtual classroom. Looks great!

    One last question for you is, I was wondering which online resources, research platforms are you using for your students? I have a struggle in the Elementary School to give the children only a few limited research platform for my art(PYP Art) field, and I was wondering if you have better options, where do you send your children to research, exercise?

    I know that the khan academy- https://www.khanacademy.org is a very good website for maths and science, and in general for critical thinking. I use it for art history, conceptual understanding of art in general, sometimes. Maybe you have already used it before.

    Best greetings, Simona.

  4. Hi Shalene! It took me a while to come back to my COETAIL journey. I loved the video that you posted. It gives a clear explanation of the two models and how they are intertwined. This video refreshed my knowledge of TPACK and SAMR right away. I think it could be useful for teachers’ PD. This video gave me an idea of how I can use these models to plan my lessons using these two tech models. I found the Technology Integration Matrix, which you have recommended, a helpful tool as well. We create detailed guidelines for students, but the teachers also need to have simple and clear instructions on how to implement technology meaningfully. I would like to know more about Collaborative Co-teaching Bitmoji Classroom. How does it work? Is it teacher-driven or teacher-student collaboration?

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