Flipping Classrooms

Whole article here.

“After much coercion, Stacey finally convinced me to give the flipped classroom a try, and just one year later my entire teaching life has been turned upside down. I began flipping my AP Calculus class last year, and as a result, 80% of my students scored a “4” or “5” on the AP exam, with half of the class earning a perfect score!”

Before reading this article, i had never heard of the concept of a “flipped classroom.” Honestly after reading this article i still didn’t totally understand what it meant. After asking around and talking about the idea with some friends, i think i finally got a grip on what having a flipped classroom means. The core concept has to do with flipping, what in most cases, is the normal procedure of a classroom. What i mean by normal procedure is a class period where a teacher lectures and talks at students for most or the entire class. After one of these lectures a teacher usually will assign an individual homework assignment which they complete and bring in the next day. I can definitely say that this has been a familiar form to me throughout my education, and i believe almost all students would agree.  The problem that advocates of flipping classrooms see with this type of teaching, is that it creates an atmosphere where students are disengaged. A teacher who decides to flip their classroom chooses to reverse this order. With new improvements in technology sweeping across the nations classrooms, teachers have begun to embrace new practices and strategies for their students. In a flipped classroom technology is crucial to teachers and to students. What a teacher wil normally do is record their lectures on a video camera, and then send these recordings home with the students who then watch them as their “homework.” The normal class period is then spent working one on one with students and helping them with their individual tasks or actively engaging them in other projects or problems. 

This new type of classroom is incredibly appealing to me both as a student and as a teacher. As a student, I’m not really one who absorbs information and learns well form lectures. I have certainly had situations where i’ll walk out of a lecture hall and have almost no idea what the professor talked about. Individual attention and engaging activities are what help me understand new topics and embrace new information. As a teacher this new process of working with students individually and understanding the different ways that each of them face certain issues seems much more appealing to me then lecturing for period after period of class. That being said, i do understand that lecturing does sometimes have its place in classrooms, and with certain types of information, lecturing does work best. However, i’m happy to see that people like Roshan and her daughter are attempting to put different strategies into practice in order to engage the greatest number of students.

-Alex Denu

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About alexdenu

Senior english major at Colostate University. Publishing, self-publishing, e-books, OCR corrections, reading, lit analysis etc.

One thought on “Flipping Classrooms

  1. mhuntzinger says:

    I had never heard this technique called “flipping classrooms” before either, but I agree that this is an ideal that would be worthwhile to try in my future classroom. I think that this teaching style is something that is becoming more prevalent in classrooms and a greater push has been made for this type of education. In the last twenty years there has been a huge shift from the teacher centered, lecture based learning to student centered, active learning. I would agree with you that technology is the driving force behind this shift. Podcasts and online lectures, like the Kahn Academy, have made it possible to “flip classrooms”. By learning the information at home, kids are able to practice the skills they have learned in school. I think this is a much more valuable use of time for the students. I think too often in traditional learning, skills are never fully developed and teachers just move on to the next subject. I think its more important for students to be able to apply information than to just memorize facts. This strategy helps students better develop these skills. I completely agree with you that this teaching style would be much more engaging for students and an interesting strategy.
    ~Marie

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