Today marked the first day of actual flipped classroom time and it...was...AMAZING! It was like all the planning and straining and crying (well only a few tears) and it worked! IT WORKED! I know a lot of the questions I had when trying to flip the classroom came from two different things
1) Am I going to make my own videos or am I going to use previously made videos?
2) How am I going to hold the students accountable for actually watching said videos- regardless of what they are?
After weeks of trying to wrap my brain around this I finally called my very dear friend who is probably one of the best teachers I know (like Teacher of the Year in TWO different schools). My original thought was to have the students take notes and I give them a grade on the notes they take. My friend disliked the idea. She talked me about how even though this was going to be new and sparkly to my students it was going to lose its appeal very quickly if they were stuck taking Cornell Notes every night.
She also brought forth the idea and having the students create questions on an online discussion board- much like Facebook- instead. The kids like Facebook and they like commenting on each others stuff.
So, with all this planning and chatting the system I have come up with is as follows.
1) Students are assigned a video lecture to watch for "homework". I have been hunting for high quality lecture like videos that were already made. I chose the pre-made videos due to time and effort. I did not want to spend all my extra time (right now) making video lectures when I could find something with way more animation somewhere else. I will be keeping all videos under 10 minutes. Below is a sample video of one the kids just watched yesterday. Obviously I'm not wanting you to watch the video, even though these guys do an awesome job making it entertaining. Just wanted to give an idea of what I was looking for.
2) Students are highly encouraged to take notes. I tell them there notes can only be one page...no more! They place their notes in an interactive notebook either directly or by taking them on a Cornell Note sheet and gluing them in later. The one page of notes does, in my mind, a couple different things. First, it forces the students to watch the video and determine the really important information, instead of writing down everything. Secondly, it keeps all interactive notebooks on the same page. I am not a fan of random interactive notebooks since it makes it really hard to help the students study if they can't find anything. And when I tell the kids that it is highly encouraged I explain to them that since I am not the one giving them the information I need to be able to see what they thought was important coming out of the video. I also tell them if they do poorly on their unit test and get a chance to retake, how am I suppose to help them if I cannot pinpoint where they went wrong. So far they seem to accept both of these.
3) Once they have watched the video (which I don't grade) and they take notes (which I am also not going to grade) they are then responsible for their WQA on the video. I did some tweaking of Flipping with Kirch's WSQ or "wisk" as she so lovingly refers to it. Where Kirch is using hers as a summary (S) and then a question (Q) that the students still may have about the material (which she goes over the next class), I was wanting more of an online discussion over the video. So, after the students watch the video the log in to their Schoology account and complete their WQA- watch, question, answer. They are to ask a question about the video, either a question they really have or if they think they got it a question that could be on a test. As a school we are working on levels of questioning and inquiry and I have provided anchors of question stems for the DOK levels of questions. Once the students ask a question they then have to respond to someone else's question in the class. I provided the students with a rubric on how I grade these. I am grading 1) their question- is it higher level and does it relate to the video 2) their mechanics- do they capitalize, punctuate and spell correctly 3) their response- does it relate, is it correct and 4) their online behavior- are they polite. Below is a look at one of the classes WQAs online. Obviously, we are still working on the mechanics piece but you can get the idea.
I still have some kinks to work out but overall I am pleased on how today went. I can't wait to keep going!