Flipping Classrooms

Using new technology in the classroom to improve learning outcomes has long been established.  Using these new technologies to flip the whole teaching process, however, is quite the novel concept.

The idea of a flipped classroom incorporates the use of iPads for teachers to deliver recorded lectures for the students to watch on their own time as homework.  This leaves more class time for questions and solving homework problems. The reversed method of teaching provides teachers with more one-on-one time with students to address specific questions.

This technique has proved especially useful for math and science classes.  A Chemistry teacher at Jamestown High School, Colorado, Tom Warner, has taken to loading his lectures  and chemistry related apps and games onto iPads for the students while maintaining complete control of the iPad’s content.  Mr. Warner’s strategy has been met with student approval and success, “It’s a more efficient use of class time. We can watch the videos on our own time, and go back and re-watch them if we need to,” student Miss Andino commented.

This method has not been met with universal acclaim however.  Issues involving internet accessibility in low-income areas and the model’s emphasis on lecturing have arisen.  Despite these concerns, Stacey Roshan’s Advanced Placement Calculus class is testament to a flipped classroom’s success.  Ms. Roshan covers the material in less time and has seen more students achieving 5’s, the highest mark possible, on the advanced placement Exam.  Commenting in USA Today, Ms. Roshan said, “In an English class, you send the kids home to read a passage, and then in class you discuss that passage. Why in math class am I more or less having them read the passage in class?”

Posted by: Georgina Ellison

Sources: The Post-Journal, USA Today

Photo Credit: CHEW2377 courtesy of flickr user Trinity College, University of Melbourne

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