Flipped Classroom Teaching

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Chances are you don’t know what flipped classroom teaching is, but you probably do know Khan Academy. For those of you that don’t know, Khan academy is a website (and now app) that contains thousands of instructional videos from test preparation to Music History and Physics. Other than being a phenomenal tool, Khan Academy inspired a new form of education that takes advantage of technology.

Until recently your teacher needed to be in front of you to teach you, but because of the most recent boom in technology almost every kid in America owns some form of screen that changes  that. The theory behind flipped-classroom teaching is that a student will watch a video of a lecture/lesson/concept for homework and then use class time to master the concept under their teacher’s guidance.

Just like anything else there are pro’s and con’s. Con: Students are responsible for watching these videos (children 13-19 are not known for their reliability). Con: To ensure students watch the videos the teachers will have to threaten them with a quiz or other form of graded assessment. Pro: There is a lot less sitting at home with problems you don’t know how to solve and parents who don’t know how to help. Pro (for teachers): it is a sharable lesson! You aren’t great with teaching grammar but fantastic with quote anaylsis, get a lesson from a teacher who loves grammar and share your quote analysis lesson. Finally, exam time comes around and you have completely forgotten what a SVDO sentence is, just go back and watch it!

Flipped-classroom teaching ensures that you get the information, the practice, and the instruction, just in an untraditional order. Mrs. Berkeley says her students perk up when she shows them videos; that to her it seems like they pay more attention when her voice is on the screen. Although this isn’t quite flipped-classroom learning, she says that when she is in class playing the videos it’s especially nice because it’s like having herself cloned: One to teach and one to proctor behavior.

Friends’s current policy is to let its teachers decide on a teacher-by-teacher basis whether or not to use flipped classroom teaching. A couple of years ago we had a math teacher who taught almost completely flipped but as of right now it’s one lesson at a time.  

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