Flipped Classroom?

Overall, I feel pretty good about my 1:1 class.  However, in the tradition of this blog, I'm always looking for new ways to improve.  We have all heard of the "flipped classroom".  This idea has been increasingly popular in education in the past few years.  When I first heard about flipping the classroom I thought it sounded interesting, but I was skeptical.  Part of the concept makes sense--students should be doing the "work" in class with the teacher, not at home without the support they need.  However, doesn't the same logic apply to instruction at home?  How can we expect students to learn without asking questions in the heat of learning?  Homework completion is a problem in school.  The learning in a flipped classroom relies on homework.  This seems like a gamble.

In addition, my philosophy about homework has changed over the last few years.  I really don't feel homework has great value, in fact there is a fair amount of research against homework.  Besides, we ask the kids to be at school for 8 hours, now we ask them to do more work at home? 

Despite my misgivings, I have been flirting with this concept for a while, and after a recent conversation with my superintendent, I decided to give the flipped classroom a chance.  Our Macbooks offer us a unique opportunity to create very personalized videos and other presentations in a number of formats.  Besides, I do love a good experiment!  As a man of science, how can I dismiss a theory without testing it?  After ISTEP (Indiana's standardized test), I will start a 2-3 week period of flipping my class.  I plan to use some students surveys and keep careful records of student learning.  I will report my finding and information on this blog.  I will create several videos as the learning materials students will watch at home or on their own time and class time will be used for learning activities and/or one-on-one remediation.  Here is a sample of a a video podcast about the Spread of Islam I made in Keynote and edited in iMovie.  Student will watch this and post a question or comment on my Edmodo page.


  1. Hey Justin, you know my feelings on homework. As a big fan of video instruction, the flipped classroom intrigues me. I have to wonder, though, can anti-homework people like me justify watching videos outside of class? Unless the kids choose to watch the videos, isn't this still traditional homework?

    I'll look forward to your report on how this works out and what the students think about it.

  2. I totally agree, I am ardently anti-homework. However, I am also a man of science. I feel like I need to try this huge trend in education before I completely judge it. Flipping is becoming very popular, especially among administration. Honestly, I see this as a step away from traditional homework, which is good. Do you think it could be the first step in a move away from homework altogether?


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