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#flipcon12 Wrapup: Two of Everything

Two Big Takeaways:

  1. The purpose of Flipped Learning is to reach more learners, promote maximal independence and encourage students to take ownership over their learning.
  2. Flipped Learning is NOT about the video. In fact, the strongest speakers I saw at FlipCon12 said you don’t need a video for everything, but that it’s about choosing when a video can help you free up time to support more learners.

Two Quotable moments:

  1. “What we call cheating, I call collaborating.” –Brian Bennett on working together in the classroom
  2. “I don’t want to walk you through this. This is a flipped presentation. You can go learn it at home.” –Jac de Haan during his session on engaging students through video
Two Inspirations:
  1. Talking, listening and thinking about Flipped Learning all week really made me rethink my own learning process, especially in relation to professional development. I am inspired to take more action to self-assess my own development in my teaching practice.
  2. I am completely inspired by the innovative ways that teachers are using technology to differentiate instruction and reach more learners and will definitely watch some videos on creating videos so that I can become stronger at it.

Two Concerns:

1. The title of Bergmann and Sams’ new book is “Flip Your Classroom: Reach Every Student in Every Class Every Day,” but throughout the conference and my reading about Flipped Learning I’m hearing and seeing quotes like this:

  • “Sams, the Colorado chemistry teacher known as one of the fathers of flipping, acknowledged that about 9 percent of his students have received Fs every year he has taught—both before and after he started delivering lectures through video in his school district.” -Sarah Butrymowicz, Promise of the ‘flipped classroom’ eludes poorer school districts, Hechinger Report
  • “‘Some students, they choose not to learn, not to participate,’ he said. ‘A lot of people ask, ‘What do you do with the unmotivated kid?’ I wish I had a good answer to that.” -Sarah Butrymowicz, Promise of the ‘flipped classroom’ eludes poorer school districts, Hechinger Report
  • “They have a list of things they’re supposed to do – some do, some don’t and if they don’t they’re wasting their time.” –This was one speaker’s response to the question “What are your other students doing while your giving the quiz?” from a session at the Flipped Class Conference
  • During the student panel an audience member asked, “Were there any students in your class who hated the flipped model and why?” The two students began discussing how their peers who didn’t like flipped learning were the ones who didn’t do their homework or care anyway.

I guess the concern I have here is that there are struggling learners who need a lot of structure and we must remember that often times motivation is connected to struggle. Sometimes all it takes to motivate the student who “doesn’t care” is a great teacher. I worry that the students who need the extra push may not get it with flipped instruction the same way I worry that they may not get it once the Common Core State Standards have made their way into the classroom. At one point Brian Bennett said, “You still need to DO your job,” to the audience and that struck me as the most salient piece. Videos do not replace teaching.

2. Access is still an issue that warrants concern. It does not need to be a definitive barrier but it is undoubtedly a huge challenge for some teachers and learners.

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