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Technology SAMR Model for Administrators - Part 1: Staff Presentations

Josh Work

Middle School Administrator, Maryland
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The introduction of wireless networks and bring-your-own-device (BYOD) programs in classrooms has increased the demand for teachers to effectively utilize technology worldwide. We have seen an emphasis placed on technology-centered professional development to ensure that classroom educators are best prepared for these challenges. Throughout this process, teachers may feel that they are at the forefront of professional development while administrators may feel a little behind the power curve.

Throughout this series, I will focus on the Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition (SAMR) model highlighting different tasks that school-based administrators may face during the school year. These tasks will be broken down and explained using the SAMR model in the following order:

  • Part 1: Staff Presentations
  • Part 2: Community Interaction
  • Part 3: File Management
  • Part 4: Classroom Evaluations
  • Part 5: Staff Input

Google Apps for Education (GAFE) will be the primary software that I reference, but other programs could be substituted.

Lead by Example

I believe that a key component behind any successful learning environment is good leadership. Administrators set the tone for their staff and school, including the integration of technology. I've noticed a significantly higher buy-in from staff when the administrator is the one pioneering the use of technology in the school.

The implementation and extent of technology integration will vary from administrative use to classroom instruction. The most important concept is the tendency to encourage risk-takers toward innovation and improving the learning environment of our students.

Staff Presentations

Determine the Purpose

Time is a precious commodity in education for both teachers and administrators. Sometimes staff members can feel the strain of the constant meetings they might attend throughout the week. These may include grade level, content area, parent, IEP, 504, or intervention meetings. Determine if the upcoming staff meeting requires everyone to meet face-to-face after school. Can the information you are trying to convey be easily understood online?

Providing a digital copy of the upcoming staff meeting to be reviewed independently could alleviate some stress throughout the building. If you are looking for feedback from staff members, include a Google Form or host a Google Hangout to answer any questions.

Nearpod Presentation

I would definitely recommend Nearpod to all educators and administrators. It is a sleek, powerful, interactive presentation tool used by educators around the world. Using Nearpod to present a new school initiative or review performance data would be a method of keeping your staff focused and involved in the presentation. Participants can interact with each other and submit answers in real time.

All of this information could be saved and shared throughout the school in order to drive future instruction. This process could also be completed using Google Slides and sharing the file with staff members on Google Drive.

Provide Interaction

Even if you decide not to use Nearpod, there are many other ways to keep staff members involved during your presentation. Using backchannel tools such as TodaysMeet or Edmodo could be helpful for connecting to your audience as you present.

Just like our students, some staff members may feel embarrassed about asking a question in front of other educators. This could be especially true for a new teacher or someone that just transferred to your school. If a staff member has a question about a topic, he or she can post it to the TodaysMeet live stream. This live stream can be saved, reviewed, and discussed during future meetings or professional development opportunities.

Possible SAMR Tools

I’ve detailed a few examples and ideas for staff meetings using SAMR:




  • Enhance previous presentations with video, audio, hyperlinks, etc.
  • Embed widgets or interactive applications


  • Nearpod Presentation
  • Google Hangout
  • Google Slides and share with staff
  • Twitter live chat with staff members

Based on your perception and tech-savvy abilities, some of these tasks may not fit your definition of SAMR. Please feel free to leave a comment below sharing your ideas.

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Comments (7) Sign in or register to comment Follow Subscribe to comments via RSS

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

Really great resources. You've made me want to look into Nearpod and use it for all of my presentations!

Another tool I'd suggest for providing a backchannel (you mentioned Edmodo + TodaysMeet), is Twitter. Twitter is the most widely-adopted backchannel tool out there and it's as simple as setting up a hashtag to get started. Tip: Just make sure that you pick a hashtag that's not already in use. Once I started using #PBL (this was years ago) and I kept seeing different language tweets talking about basketball -- they were using #PBL to represent the Philippine Basketball League. :)

Paul McGuire's picture
Paul McGuire
I am a retired principal from Ottawa, Canada. Passionate about learning and connecting with others who also want to learn.

Thank-you for this series. I have shared it with all the administrators in our district and I hope they follow your posts. I am writing a response to these posts. My first one is here -

Keith Heggart's picture
Keith Heggart
High School Teacher from Sydney, Australia

Hi Josh,
Interesting article. I hadn't really thought about the way that teachers might use SAMR for their own use, rather than simply in the classroom, so thank you for opening my eyes. I can see that there are some real possibilities there. I was thinking, too, that there is potential to go even further, too - as part of redefinition, why not remove 'real-time' staff presentations completely, and instead replace it with an online presence with the potential to leave comments? (Sorry if this is what you mean by Nearpod - I'm not as familiar as I should be with that product).


Bill Pratt's picture
Bill Pratt
Assistant Principal/Clover School District

Great article. Can't wait to see the rest. Thanks for sharing. This is one area that I think needs a lot of attention--leadership with digital integration.

Josh Work's picture
Josh Work
Middle School Administrator, Maryland

Great idea for using Twitter. I have not tried this in my classroom yet but I'm excited to see how it goes! Maybe a research project on the PBL :)


Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

I just came across this helpful presentation (in the form of a prezi) all about SAMR. This teacher used it in a staff training.

Also, here's a link to this teacher's tech plan and additional context:

Hope some find this helpful -- ready-made presentations are always great in my book. :)

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

Another GREAT resource to understand SAMR in less than 3 minutes.

These students created a 101 SAMR video using Powtoon: I actually found it very clear and easy to understand. Plus, at the end it references three other helpful SAMR resources.

Enjoy and maybe we let our students help us explain and figure out educational pedagogy more? :)

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