Monday, April 16, 2012

Flipped Classroom Sounds Like One of Them There Fancy Teaching Words

The term flipped classroom sounds so hoity-toity, right?  Well, maybe not really, but it is a term that reminds me of hybrid courses taught within many universities.  Hybrid courses are a mixture of traditional class time and online (distance) learning. A blending of face-to-face and online instruction.  It is considered flipped because homework (applying skills) is performed within the classroom, while lecture (content) is taught outside of the classroom, which is a much more effective model.

Who knows the content better the teacher or the parents?  I don't mean to offend anyone, but I have gotten notes, emails, and phone calls from confused parents.  "If you don't use it, you lose it."  When you are dealing with a certain concept every year, it is easy to think that content is the most important thing for students to learn.  But, the focus is on teaching the content and not the students.  When the classroom is flipped, it is easy to focus classroom attention on student-needs.  Their misconceptions can be seen through their active participation in the learning process.  Rather than asking "Does this make sense," a teacher can witness a student's understanding.

The first step is to figure out how to create or find video lessons.  Next, the videos will need to be shared for each lesson.  I would start by looking at Educreations app for the iPad or Screecast-O-Matic for you computer.  A regular video camera could also work, but the "talking head" model in online learning isn't engaging or effective.  For already made videos, search YouTube, Vimeo, or Khan Academy.  If you haven't already, check out the Khan Academy website.  There are thousands of instructional videos there for free.

So, research this teaching concept and attempt to use technology to benefit your instruction.
  • Content reviewed at home 
  • Application in the classroom. 
Here is a video and infographic to help explain the concept behind flipped-classrooms.  This web-based content will probably do a better job than my blog post.  This teaching strategy would work well within 1:1 schools.  For students without the Internet at home, I can see issues with this strategy. 

After viewing the content below, what do you think of this concept?  How have you flipped your classroom?  How will you flip your classroom?

Flipped Classroom
Created by Knewton and Column Five Media


  1. Are you flipping your classroom? What changes have you made after you started that seem to be working for you?

    1. My school isn't 1:1 and that makes it difficult because I have a small digital divide. So, not all the students can preview the information online. In addition, even if they have the Internet, it is difficult to make sure everyone watches the material.

      Currently, I started using my classroom blog to present students with information. I use my additional online content to start my lessons. With a computer lab across the hallway, we jump over there to review the content. Then, students apply the content reviewed in some type of activity. So far, I have done this with kid blogs, science activities, supplemental information on an interactive read aloud, review material on fractions, and others.

      As schools begin to transfer to the 1:1 model, this method of teaching will become a lot easier implement. I hope to get my hands on a classroom filled with students and computer (or tablet) in each student's hands. Thanks for the questions.