Reflections and Contemplations on Education and such...

Education as I see it at Waukesha West and the world...

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


Teaching an AP class is an interesting challange.  People think that it must be easy becasue you have all great kids.  And yes...I have great kids but teaching an AP class presents unique challenges.

That is the preface to my rant today.  Each AP class has a College Board run message board/list serve.  I like to read them for curriculur ideas and general conversation about education and speicigcally teaching AP US History.  Today I read some things about the flipped classroom that I think misrepresent what a flipped classroom should look like. goes my venting:

Myth:  Flipped classroom teachers do nothing. Reality:  I work more in a flipped classroom than I did when I lectured to my AP students.  It is easy to stand in front of the class and vomit content.  It is difficult to come up with genuine learning activities that involve higher order thinking skills.

Myth:  The flip classroom is about the videos.  Reality:  The flip classroom is NOT about the videos.  The videos help in content acquisition, but kids can get content anywhere these days.  Ask your students a question and more than half can get their phones out and get the answer within minutes.  Content can be done at home, and the videos help that.

Myth:  Kids wont watch the videos.  Reality:  Some kids wont...those are the ones that tune you out in a lecture.  Most will...I enable the views on my videos and I was astonished how many were being watched.  As with most things in the classroom, if you make it a priority or show it is important the kids will follow.

Myth:  Flipped is a "fad".  Reality:  This one is hard to prove, but this I know for educators we cannot stay in the industrial model of the 19th and 20th centuries.  Kids are changing...and we need to meet them where they are as learners.  Flipped videos allow my students to access me when and where they want.  That includes outside of the 4 walls of my classroom and the 47 minutes I see them  on a daily basis.

Myth:  Flipped classroom is the end all be all of education reform.  Reality:  It still takes great instruction for students to succeed.  A great flipped classroom is one in which students are exposed to high quality instruction that includes 21st Century Skills.  Great teachers are still needed for that to happen.

Finally, I am sure that many of you have seed the Sir Ken Robinson Changing Paradigm video.  If you haven't it is below.  This...for truly the essence of the flipped classroom.


1 comment:

  1. Excellent post. Thanks for sharing and for your comments. I hear the same "myths" day in and day out. I really agree with #1 - it is SO much easier to just show up and lecture (math for me)... I know my stuff, I show it. To come to school and have to bring engaging discussion topics, hands-on problems, and learning activities for the students to do for a whole 54 minute period... now that's work. :)