A central theme in all of this activity is the idea that active learning works best. Telling doesn’t work very well. Doing is the secret.
As with many subjects in COETAIL, the Flipped Classroom is not entirely new to me because of the wonderful world of Twitter; however, I appreciate the opportunity to engage more deeply with the topic and discover new resources. For example, I wouldn’t have tripped across The National Center for Case Study Teaching in Science or Bozeman Science, both of which I can’t wait to share with my teachers when I return to school. I already knew about the Green Brothers’ Crash Course series, but this exploration has reignited my enthusiasm for them.
As always, I also am benefiting from the reflections of my cohort members, like Mary Carley’s impassioned and much discussed Flipped Classroom – No Thank you! post. There was another post I read last week as well, which shared a similar anti-Flipped Classroom sentiment, stating that what happens in her classroom can’t be transferred to a video for outside of school. I am inclined to agree with Mary Carley in particular, especially in an MYP school. Our MYP coordinator, Dave Chilton, is fond of saying that the MYP isn’t about covering content as much as it is about UNcovering content. Homework shouldn’t have as big of a place when you’re not worried about how much content you cover so much as what skills you develop in your students.
Like most innovations in education, part so the Flipped Classroom are extremely valuable, and it should definitely not be taken completely without question. One of the examples shared made me very uncomfortable, where prior to class, students had to watch a video, complete a quiz, and participate in an online learning environment like Facebook, all before coming to class the next day. In a university course? Great. In a high school classroom? Ridiculous. But I’ve seen some great examples of elements of the Flipped classroom in action, like students being able to pause and rewatch an explanation of a problem while completing their assignments.
In the Library
To me, the library is a great place for guiltless incorporation of elements of the Flipped Classroom, because we don’t have homework! We support homework! So whether I think flipping a classroom is great or not, whether I think students should have homework or not, my job is to make sure that LIS students are prepared to do research 24/7, whether I am around or not. That means I need to have a “Flipped Library” ready at all times, anticipating what my students will need to know.
In the past, I’ve tried to do this on our blog by sharing video resources made by others combined with my informative slides on how to use our electronic reference resources:
- Research with World Book Encyclopedia Online
- Databases: Student Resources in Context & Junior Reference Collection
or how to be a more effective researcher:
While these resources do help students when I’m not around, these are just the tip of the iceberg. I need to start doing more with screencasting to allow teachers to flip library time. Instead of always having to come to me to provide instruction for their students on how to use our resources (and spend half the visit to the library explaining how to find resources), it would be so much better if the teachers could share a short video about how to search the catalog, access Questia, limit results in the Gale databases, request materials, find their physical resources and more before visiting the library space. Then when they arrive, our valuable time together could be spent actually using these resources, rather than teaching them how to use it and sending them off to struggle with databases on their own.
Another benefit of flipping my library instruction? Saving my voice! How tired am I at the end of a day of repeating the same thing over and over again? About this tired:
Anyone have some great examples of librarians flipping their library instruction with research screencasts? I’ve got lots of professional examples from companies like Follett and Gale. I want to see your average librarian’s productions. Okay, maybe your above average librarian!