After hearing about all the craze and doing a bit of research... I asked myself ... NOW WHAT ? There's a new trend in education, why not try it ? I met with my co-teacher in second grade and we talked about what units or lessons we can flip in our curriculum. We decided on flipping a lesson on fractions and addition strategies for Math. We also tried flipping our Social Studies culture and geography units. We gave it a shot ....and this is what we learned :
- Kids LOVE watching videos in their homes. They would JUMP at an opportunity to do it
- Students love anything that has to do with being ONLINE.
- Videos allowed our kids to learn at their own pace - but - for our 7 year olds, we needed parent/adult supervision.
- Giving kids a RUBRIC to follow while watching an online lesson helps them A LOT. They know what to expect and how to behave during the lesson.
- Second graders require explicit instruction and modeling before starting the flip strategy.
- Online lessons ONLY work for our kids when it is short, animated and straight to the point.
- Providing kids with direct application in their homes right after watching the video can allow them to make an instant connection with the lesson. For example, they watch a video on what fractions are , then after the video they have to answer a survey on how they use fractions in their home or we'd ask them to do a fraction activity during dinner .
- Online videos can also be in the form of animated e-books , a recording of an earlier lesson taught in class or a video created by another expert.
- Online learning allows us , teachers, to give our students all the information they might need for a certain topic. Sometimes we can get caught up in the chaos of our day and we just don't have enough time to possibly teach everything ! The videos serve as a supplement to our lessons in school.
- There are some units that need to be taught FACE to FACE especially in lower school.
- Not all students , at least in our community, have good internet access so it's wise to send them the video on a memory stick .
- Flip teaching becomes a nuisance to households that do not have computers .
- For second graders, flipping the lesson can only happen once a week - the rest of the week will be for reinforcement.
- Students MISS having in-class lessons after a while.
- Flipping the lessons allow for differentiation.
- Planning online lessons gave way to collaboration amongst our teachers.
- Getting regular feedback from students and parents is a valuable tool for reflecting on our teaching methods.
The flipping experiment was a success. Our children loved the variation we provided in our teaching methods . They liked that they got to go online at home. They also showed that they learned a lot from the videos.. However, there were also some setbacks in terms of availability of hardware at home or internet connections. There was also an issue of kids forgetting to watch the videos or just simply being reluctant.
Overall, I think that the flip classroom is another effective learning tool that teachers can use in their classrooms as a supplement to their teaching. Change is a good way to engage students but it is important for teachers to find the right BALANCE in the classroom .