Dan Bruno, who also publishes on the High School Matters blog, wrote a post about flipped classrooms in December. Although I didn't explore this instructional method at the time (re-doing two National Board entries, taking a graduate class, teaching 90 AP Lang students, and trying to be a mom and wife - as teachers - you, best of all, understand why I didn't get around to it:) I recently found the time to explore the flipped classroom concept, and Tech & Learning has a great post explaining the positive effects of flipped classrooms.
Simply, a flipped classroom is one in which students watch a video lecture at home and complete classroom activities, or what would normally be considered homework, in class. This set up allows teachers to act as both a lecturer and a facilitator. I watched the Flipping the Classroom Tech & Learning video, and one comment made by a student really stuck with me.
He said that he didn't have to stop the whole class if he didn't understand. He could pause the video and re-watch what he didn't get the first time. We all know that we have students who will not raise their hand, and unfortunately, they miss out on important information.
A teacher comment in the video also stuck with me. When students come to class ready to complete classroom activities, the teacher is not the only one helping students. Students who watched the video and easily understood the lesson serve as peer tutors. Students who have additional questions can ask not only the teacher but also a classmate, and the students who understood the lesson reinforce the concepts of the lesson as they assist other students.
If you did not read Dan's post, he provides a basic outline to organize flipped instruction in an English classroom. I encourage you to read Flipping Out.
Several websites support teachers implementing the flipped classroom model:
- Sign up for the online community The Flipped Class Network
- TechSmith has printable tutorials
- Best of all, TEDTalks has signed on to support teachers in facilitating a flipped classroom. Check out TED's Beta TED-Ed site. Read the press release here: TED-Ed Launches Groundbreaking Website with New Tools for Customized Learning.