Friday, 23 May 2014

Who is flipping what now?

The inimitable Grace Helbig became famous through her YouTube channel My Damn Channel. Last year I learned all about flipping my classroom and as a result started a channel of my own. It seemed only natural, and incredibly clever, to call my channel My Flipping Channel and the email to go along with it myflippingclassroom. And so the puns begin!
Flipping is a reasonably new approach to teaching that harnesses the use of technology to use teaching and learning time more efficiently. I'm sure there's not much I could say to add to the discussion around the benefits of flipped learning, but here are some links to people and places that provide guidance and inspiration on how and why to flip your classroom. 

This first video is adorable and from the Flipped Institute.

This article tells you what Flipped Learning is and isn't. The videos below were created by one of the authors of the aforementioned article.

Both of these gentlemen are on the board of this organisation. And finally, here is the obligatory Wikipedia page. 

These are the few pearls of wisdom I can offer that might have helped me when I started this process:

1. This approach can lead some kids to be quite demanding of your time. You will need to work at having clear boundaries around your availability, especially if you have a 1:1 BYOD class.

2. You will have to teach students how to make the most of all of this. Start small.

3. Try to make videos that can be used for at least of couple of your classes. Start with skills videos first. These are easier to make brief and specific so students can work out for themselves exactly where to go when they get stuck. Content videos will take longer to create and be very specific to one class and one unit which is not the best use of your time.

4. Quality, not quantity. Don't try to make videos for all your classes all at once. Just focus on one class until you are comfortable with this style of teaching.

5. Flipping does not just equal making a video. Students might be asked to read an article at home or watch someone else's video. Challenge yourself to work smarter, not harder. How can you flip without going to the effort of making a new video every time?

6. Keep videos as short as possible, 5 minutes max, 3 minutes is even better. In one video you may only teach students how to write one specific kind of sentence, or how to choose the best essay topic.

7. Make them rewarding: insert silly photos or a link to an entertaining video as a reward.

8. Flipped learning won't suit all students, especially if they don't have access to the internet at home.

I'd love to hear your thoughts below - do you flip already? If not, is there anything holding you back?
Get out there and start flipping learning!

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