The Blended Learning Stages of SAMR & Buncee

“What is great about Buncee is the way it can be woven into any lesson, for any subject, in any stage of the SAMR model. The possibilities are endless.”

Blended Learning Expert, Sarah Rich,  @edtechSAE

So what is the SAMR model and why is it so important in the Blended Personalized Learning world?


SAMR is an acronym for Substitution, Augmentation, Modification, and Redefinition. The SAMR model was developed by Dr. Ruben Puentedura. There are many ways that technology integration can impact teaching and learning. The SAMR model shows the progression that teachers take when implementing technology into their lessons. The further one progresses through the SAMR model, the more fluent they become. Integrating technology and student engagement become more natural for the teacher.

What is great about Buncee is the way it can be woven into any lesson, for any subject, in any stage of the SAMR model. Some programs take time for teachers to understand and begin using. This is not the case with Buncee for it’s simple and easy to use from the start. Below are some examples of how Buncee can be integrated into each level of the SAMR model.


At this level, you are simply using technology as a substitute in a regular lesson. Here you can use Buncee to create a poem or even just take notes. Art teachers could have students create a collage or a drawing using a Buncee. If comparing two characters in a story, create a Venn Diagram within a Buncee.




At this stage, you are still substituting, but technology is making the task easier to accomplish. For example, if you were doing an “All About Me” project, students could include facts, drawings, and pictures. Using Buncee would make it a step above a collage.

Another example is that students could write letters in a Buncee to their favorite author. They might also consider adding a personal video of themselves explaining their favorite part of the book.



As you progress towards the next two levels, keep in mind that these lessons could not be designed or taught without technology.


At this level, students are now using technology to complete more complex tasks and projects. Think of taking a slide presentation, and enhancing it in ways you never thought possible.

Students can design a science notebook or science presentation. Buncee allows you to add videos of each part of the life cycle. Students can add pictures or sketches of observations they have made, as well as creating graphs of their data. These projects can then be housed in one folder, where students and other teachers can offer their feedback on each student’s work.



Redefinition (The Big Boom!)

This level is all fireworks and big booms! You’re doing things you could never have done before without the technology. When you’ve reached this phase and truly understand the aspects of a great lesson, this new energy gives that spark. Things start to come together naturally. A good example of redefinition is the “Buncee Buddies,” pen pal project. Students are collaborating with other students around the world in ways they couldn’t before.




“What I Want To Be When I Grow Up” is another example. Students can design a Buncee page showcasing what they want to be when they grow up. When designing, remind students to leave a blank space in their Buncee, where they can be. When complete, screenshot the Buncee. Upload it as a background in Do Ink (Green Screen). For younger students, have them stand in front of the picture (screen). Depending on their comfort level, they can add a video feature.

In the older grades you can take this project a step further. Have this be a final project where they share what they know about a field that interests them. Have students add a video  interview with a role model in their field of interest. You can add this into the Buncee with their new “add a Video Feature.” The interviews could happen on a Google Hangout or on Skype. When their final project is complete, students could post their Buncees for others to view and be inspired by. Who knows? A future employer may just see their project and hire them!

Often administrators ask for teachers to post standards or other items in a place in their classrooms for everyone to see. I recommend making a few copies of the SAMR model and keeping one by your lesson plans, and one taped to your laptop or computer. Refer to it when designing or enhancing your lessons.

If administrators want to utilize the SAMR model, start by posting it for a discussion at a faculty meeting or grade level meeting. Ask teachers to think about where they would place themselves on the SAMR model. If you want to extend this even further design a walkthrough tool that has the SAMR model levels. This will make it easier for you to evaluate teacher’s progression along the continuum. Don’t forget that the level of student engagement is a key factor here.

Most of all, be supportive of your courageous teachers, and recognize the risks they are taking as they begin transforming their own classrooms into a Blended Personalized Learning space. Keep that spark and thrill alive for them!


Click here to see a final Fuse RI project that Sarah created for the Highlander Institute, using Buncee.

JamesJones_PRI_AV2A9034_cl_szSarah is a founding faculty member and teacher of 17 years at Paul Cuffee School in Providence, Rhode Island. She graduated from the Highlander Institute’s Fuse RI Fellowship Program. Sarah coaches teachers and works with administration internationally, making blended personalized learning available to schools. Sarah uses a flipped learning model with playlists. Her strengths include management in a 21st-century classroom, parent engagement, and data analysis. She is now a lead teacher at Squiggle Park.

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