5 Ways to Help Students in the Flipped Classroom

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Being the Expert

At the beginning of each unit in the flipped classroom, I give the students one day to explore about the topic.  I have them write down things that they didn’t know before.  I have a whole list of pre-selected websites they can visit or they may google the information and find websites of their own.  It always amazes me what they come up with.  They often find very intriguing websites and bits of information that I surely would not have included in a traditional unit.  Often, they want to explore these things more.  Also, quite often, I learn something new about the topic.  Their additions to the conversation we have at the end of the exploration make it more exciting as we venture out into the prescribed content.  We often are able to challenge ourselves a bit more with some of the new knowledge they bring to the table.

Choice

On-line quizzes are one of the most effective teaching tools I’ve ever used. These skill building assignments take the old bookwork to a new level.  Assigning several practice quizzes at once is a key element to my classroom.  Although at first it seems a bit overwhelming to students, they begin to make progress and end up getting most of them done.  They love having the choice of what to work on.  One of the sites I use has a little one line chat button that they can give each other advice with.

5-Ways-to-Help-Students-in-the-Flipped-ClassroomCollaboration

Collaborative efforts have always been a part of my class.  With the flipped classroom, it is no different.  I encourage students to seek explanations from their peers.  Often times the students are better at explaining it than I am and the students are more willing to ask one another for help.  Sometimes the help goes a little too far and I will catch them trying to just give each other answers.  If that happens, I’m quick to point out that the practice really isn’t worth many points, but that knowing the concepts for the test are.  It usually is enough to get them back to focusing on the learning.  I believe in the idea that if you have to teach it to someone else, you will learn it better.

Celebration

Celebrating the learner is one of my favorite aspects of my flipped classroom. Upon successful completion of one of those quizzes, I like to give shout outs to the students.  “Way to go, Jill got a 100% on adding fractions.”  I especially like to do that if the quiz is a little bit harder and the kids have to work a little more for the mastery of it.  Somehow just hearing their name seems to make them beam and want to work harder.

Second Chances

Another technique I use is the “spit it out” method.  On some of the quizzes, I can set the minimum standard that has to be achieved, for instance a 60%.  Then the kids will regularly ask me to “spit out” a test score, meaning that they want another chance at a higher grade.  After recording their first attempt in the grade book, I can clear the assignment and let them do it again.  I try not to reset it if they get a 90%, but some of my little perfectionists want to do the quizzes until they are perfect on them.  Most of the time, I let them.

What are your thoughts? Please post a comment below. Thanks for reading the educational technology blog Teach Amazing!

 

5 Comments

Patrick 10-05-2013, 08:40

Great article. I planning on doing what is described above when we start back up next year. Quick question if you don’t mind. What quiz program do you use? There are several out there and I have used many of them. I just wanted to know if you have a preference, and which one you used in this article. Thanks for any help you could relay to me.

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Linda Gutierrez 10-05-2013, 10:53

I use Manga High mostly. I wrote another blog on here about that site. It is a fabulous gaming site that my students love. It is only for math though. The one I spoke of on here, about “spit it out,” is called Thatquiz. It is much more of a generic site and it has been around a lot longer. The kids appreciate the very basic skills they can practice on that site. You can make your own quizzes on it as well. Plus there is a nice bank of quizzes made by other teachers. I’d love to hear your favorites too.

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Mark Brumley
Mark Brumley 10-05-2013, 20:51

Linda is awesome everyone…listen to her!

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Marita G. Sanchez 11-05-2013, 08:55

You have grade schoolers I have college students but I am sure those you presented can be applicable too with my students.It only needs innovative activities integrated to meet their needs

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Carl Curtis 17-12-2013, 01:57

I think schools must provide students email ids to use it for academic purposes like using the internet and make use of the assistances well. No need for college students, because they can use their personal id to use college essay writing services. So students up to high school level must be assigned email ids… for such purposes…

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