As I continue musing and thinking about the last year using a flipped classroom, ideology and philosophy changes that I’ve made flood my thoughts. At the beginning of the flipped class, I really sold the idea hard to parents and students…harder than I had to sell it to administration (a HUGE blessing).
I think the biggest selling point of the class is that I was going to work very, very hard to make sure students have every opportunity to succeed in my class.
Once the ball got rolling, students realized that this would not be a walk in the park class and that I meant business. They were still expected to work hard to learn the material and that leaving their work until the last minute would hurt their progress. I mean business in my classroom…and now my students mean business about their learning. They are not content to be fed information…they want to be challenged and pushed to their potential.
Another major shift I’ve had is that I want people stopping by my room…interrupting students…asking questions. I remember prior to flipping, it would be a major inconvenience to me if someone stopped in. Now, I can’t get enough people to drop by! I’m trying to show people how powerful this tool can be, but the interest isn’t there or I’m selling it wrong.
This isn’t just a whimsical idea that putters out after a year. I feel more on fire for teaching than I was after graduation from university. I want to share ideas and create new ways of doing things. I want to collaborate, challenge, question, and encourage other teachers interested in the same things. I want to have a classroom that is open to discussion, dissonance, and new ideas.
I do my best to encourage other teachers to open up and share through “unconferences,” meetings, or even lunch. But, its going to take more than that. We need to change the entire attitude about sharing our materials and really work to make connections to help kids.