3 ways the flipped classroom leads to better subject mastery

[For the past five years I’ve worked with Aaron Sams and Justin Aglio, the authors of this article on eSchool News article. I’ve had a chance to present with Aaron at the FlipCon and I’ve collaborated with Justin in his roles as a principal and now Director of Innovation. I’ve always felt that Flipped Learning was a powerful tool to personalize learning. I started down this path close to ten years ago in my teaching at Carnegie Mellon University where I used Classroom Salon to flip my class. While the article talks about using video, I believe it’s really any digital resource – video, graphic, or text – that becomes the key for an extended conversation with the focus on the in-class experience to generate greater depth of learning through the Flipped Learning experience outside of class.]

August 15th, 2016
Aaron Sams at FlipCon

Photos by Norton Gusky CC BY 4.0

Flipping is more than a buzzword. It helps teachers personalize lessons, assessments, and reporting

Now that the buzz about flipped learning is calming and the novelty is wearing off, the time has come to dig a little deeper into the natural outcomes of flipping. Specifically, flipping can change the type of work students complete and the way in which class time will be used; it can modify the nature of assessment, and it can alter the way in which teachers will report student work.

First and foremost, we should define some terms. On the most basic level, flipped learning occurs when instructors make use of video lectures outside the class in order to bring what was being done in the homework space back into the classroom. In short: lecture at home, homework in class.

Much of the conversation about flipping has focused on using teacher-created video as an instructional tool, but the real benefit of flipping the classroom does not come from video. The true benefit comes from using videos as a teaching tool to deliver direct instruction at home so teachers are free to reinvent classroom time.

Truly personalized learning

Inevitably, a teacher who is new to flipping will use materials from previous years. In fact, beginning flippers often change only the time and space in which content is delivered and practice is completed. One main benefit of this basic form of a flipped classroom is that, instead of students completing homework assignments outside the observation of the teacher, they now complete all work under the direct supervision of the classroom teacher. Thus, in a flipped class, the time that a teacher once spent delivering new content can be used catching and correcting each student’s misconceptions.

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