Doing the Flip, or Reversing the Classroom

I wrote a rather long (13 pages) memo to the Admin Team after attending the NAIS Annual conference in February.  The main focus was on the talk given by Salman Khan of Khan Academy.  For those of you who weren’t there, this TED talk video is a good approximate of his NAIS talk:

I’m quite interested in the idea of flipping or reversing the classroom, in that lectures or content delivery is done at home via the Internet, and classroom time is maximized to enhance person-to-person communication and collaboration.  I think this could be a win-win situation, with both the content delivery being improved, and the classroom experience becoming more authentic.

However, I don’t think this will happen all by itself.  I’m almost jealous of the East Coast schools that tried flipping this winter simply because they had so many snow days.  It was a great reason to try, and it appears that some of the “emergency measures” have led to changes long after the school days ended.

To enable teachers to become content creators and publishers (on their own, from home if need be), the tools are going to change.  I rather like Haiku as a possible tool for this, and we’re also thinking about replacing our close to end-of-life Avervision Visualizers with Mimio document cameras, in part because they run all images through the teachers laptop, making it that much easier to capture images and materials to be put online.  This could make flipping easier.

Spring break has begun, and the wife and kids just took off for Heathrow.  I have three days at school next week, and then I’m off to visit Oregon as well.

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