Getting Started with Flipped & Blended Instruction

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backflipWhen one hears “Flipped Instruction” one typically thinks about students watching videos. And you’d be right! Videos are typically a large component of the flipped classroom pedagogy. When instructional video is used in the classroom, students retain more information, visually understand concepts more readily and are more passionate about what they are learning.

Instructional video in the classroom:

  • Reinforces reading and lecture material
  • Aids in the development of a common base of knowledge among students
  • Enhances student comprehension and discussion
  • Provides greater accommodation of diverse learning styles
  • Increases student motivation and enthusiasm
  • Promotes teacher effectiveness (CPB, 2004)

Video reaches students from a variety of learning styles, provides common experiences for discussions, and illustrates complex concepts that engage students. Read more about “Using Education Video in the Classroom” from Safari Montage (a leading provider of video for the classroom) for theory, research and helpful tips.

When choosing videos for classroom use,

the most important thing to remember is to keep them short!

 Here’s a quote from Jonathon Bergman, one of the originators of Flipped Learning. This is from “9 Video Tips for a Better Flipped Classroom” by David Raths.

“Make videos short and interactive. Bergmann says he and Sams initially took their standard lectures and made videos that contained multiple objectives and pieces of content that were way too long. Gradually they learned to make them much shorter, with one video per discrete objective. “My rule of thumb is one to 1½ minutes per grade level,” he says. “That means for a fourth-grader, your videos should be no longer than four to six minutes; and for a 10th-grader, that means 10- to 15-minute videos.”

Students need more than just exposure to video, more than just consumption of video in the learning process. They also need to be taught how to evaluate and use information. They need to learn strategies for analyzing media and understand point of view. While information literacy and media literacy are not the primary focus when thinking about flipped classroom pedagogy, it is important to discuss these elements every time a video is used in the classroom. You can learn more at the Partnership for 21st Century Skills website.

Let’s take a look at what the Flipped Classroom is, and what it is not…

Articles about the Flipped Classroom Model

Many technology tools exist to make flipped classroom learning easier for both the teacher and the student.  My favorite tools are those tools which make the video watching process more engaging. Let’s take a look at a few tools that will help you get started flipping your lessons:

For desktops and laptops:

Screencasting tools for the iPad:

You can also flip LIVE! You may not use the social tool Google+ for much (if anything) other than possible chatting with colleagues. But did you know the service has a hidden Super Power?? Once you have initially set up your G+ profile and a YouTube Channel, head to and sign in. You can then start a Google Hangout On Air.

A Google Hangout On Air will:

  • Allow you to record your Webcam & microphone
  • Share and record your computer screen
  • Allow others to join in your live recording via YouTube
  • Record it all and automatically post to YouTube!
  • Learn more about Hangouts On Air

Most of these tools rely on saving or sharing your videos on YouTube. If you can’t use YouTube, you can now upload and host your videos in eMedia+ (accessed by logging into your MyUEN account).

Here’s a great example of a TEDEd flipped lesson on How to use a semicolon.

 Thanks so much to Rachel Murphy & Jared Ward for providing the information and links in this post!

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