I am not saying that a flipped classroom has all of the answers, but the students can benefit from one. A student can Google/research almost anything, and the smartest person in the room nowadays is not the teacher, but the person with the phone in his or her pocket. With that saying in mind, I like the idea of student driven activities, collaboration and inquiry done in the classroom, while the note taking and making is done at home.
Sara Thibeault and I are attempting to flip our grade 9 ELA classrooms. We are not experts, but we want to try out the concept and see where it can take us. I attached a letter that Sara created for her flipped math classroom in previous years that we tweaked for ELA to help explain our thoughts to students and parents. Flipped Classroom Information 2014
Just because we are keeners and want to go where we think education should be headed, we also started an outcomes based grading system. By start I mean we are implementing it with our Grade 9 ELA classrooms and it is a start for us, but others have done it before. There has been a lot of talk about what constitutes an 70% or an 80%, and should we be giving marks for comprehension/homework checks etc. when these are not outcomes that are mentioned in the Saskatchewan Curriculum. Quite frankly, I do not want a doctor who received 95% only because he handed in his papers on time. As educators, we need to start looking at the big picture and focus on the outcomes that we are trying to achieve versus question, answer, regurgitation and memorization. Think back to your school days right now. Think about the board filled with notes, or the countless number of overheads you were told to write down. How much of it benefitted you? Can’t you simply Google what you forget? I am sure not all of it was a loss, and I am sure some great concepts were applied, but you and I were not learners of the 21st century. We did not have the answers literally at our fingertips with the touch of the button. New skills need to be implemented, and these skills should be assessed accordingly.
I attached a few documents that we are using.
Guide to Decoding My Gradebook - We tweaked another document Sara had done up for a previous math class. We hoped it helped parents and students see the method of assessing.
outcome based AR Outcomes based CC Rubric Outcomes Rubric CR – These rubrics are the ONLY rubrics we are using for grade 9. They are specific to the outcomes in the Grade 9 ELA Saskatchewan Curriculum.
I am extremely excited to try this out. I firmly believe it is the step in the right direction in regards to assessment and teaching styles. One of my best friends works for a publishing company and when she meets professors from the surrounding areas she often asks them “what do you think your students will need or want in terms of technology in the classroom?” Sometimes the response is “the students do not use it/want it/need it.” Her follow up question is “my friend is currently implementing a flipped classroom concept in her highschool classes. How do you plan on preparing these students of the future when they come to you?” I hope they think about.