I get that flipped learning isn’t just video outside of the classroom or not meant to be anyway, but it seems much of it is. Students watch a lecture taped outside of class time (homework) and then come to class ready to learn and discuss. Genius, except for the whole watching a lecture outside of class. At a high school level I can only imagine how many hours of video we could assign students as homework so that they finally were ready to learn in school. And don’t even get me started on the students that have no access to said videos
Some teachers then don’t assign the video outside of school time but instead show the video as the first part of their class time. Umm, isn’t that just the same as lecturing in front of the students for the first ten minutes? How is that revolutionary? What am I missing here? I would have a hard time telling my students, “Watch this video of me explaining the concept to you while I stand right here watching it with you.” My 5th graders would think I had gone off the deep end. Sure creating a video for access later to study or revisit, yeah, that’s great, but showing it during class time when you are standing right there? WHat am I missing as far as the point?
Yet, perhaps it is the discussion and exploration that is revolutionary and not the video part of the flipped learning. I already do that with my students, it is called project-based learning. It is called genius hour. It is called student choice. And I don’t need a video to facilitate that. In fact, most people who believe in student-led, project based, don’t lecture very much. We provide the framework the destination and then students get there somehow through research, collaboration, and creation. Yes, this is what I feel learning should always be, but it is not a flipped model.
Student engagement does go up whenever I turn to project-based, of course, it does. When we give students choice, and a voice, and a place where they can freely explore, they will invest their dedication. That has nothing to do with flipping the classroom.
So If we want to talk revolution, let’s hail the teachers that believe in student choice. Let’s hail the teachers that somehow manage to fit in their curriculum in the time they have the students in front of them and don’t see the need to also add homework, or video, or lecture time out side of class. Let’s hail those who time manage, who figure out how to fit it all in, and who get out of the way of their students.
Flipped classroom if done correctly is just another way to say student exploration and student led and thank goodness for the resurgence of that. But could we also agree that the flipped classroom model using video outside of school is another way to infringe on students’ private time. Another example how we, as teachers, sometimes end up overstepping our boundaries of how much time we make school take up. And I don’t find that to be revolutionary at all, just sad. Creating a video library of explanations, sure, great idea, but forcing students to watch you lecture outside of school, not so much. There are other ways to give the students time.