Arkansas School Administrator Urges More Teachers to Embrace Video

tarver-academy

Image is from http://www.tarveracademy.com/

Tyler Tarver is not your standard Director of Curriculm, Instruction, Communications, or Technology.  Tyler is an innovator and his story is highlighted on the Curriculum Matters blog by Marva Hinton.

“Tarver’s educational videos have more than 10 million views.  He runs two channels on YouTube and the website tarveracademy.com, which includes his math videos as well as tutorials for teachers on using technology and career advice.  I recently caught up with him to ask about his success.”

This article hits home because I am a HUGE advocate for videos and using them to aide in the learning process.  I used Khan Academy when I was a teacher and I loved it.  The major issue with it, as Tyler states in his interview, is that it is boring.  I was able to use it to fine tune my craft while my students were not engaged enough.  After watching a couple of Tyler’s videos, he brings humor and fun into the videos making them more engaging.

Makes me wish I was still in the classroom to share this great content with my students but instead I will share it with all of you!

To Flip or not to Flip Your Classroom…

Interesting perspective from Ross Cooper who has a great website on curriculum.  In this article he discusses why he never flipped his classroom.  The idea is great and innovative BUT I agree that you can definitely flip your classroom in a away that is counterproductive and is not best for the development of our students and their ability to learn through problem solving.

As a teacher, I used this method occasionally but I was careful because I was concerned about the same issues that Ross discusses in his blog.  Consider using the time to creatively present the issue/problem, and providing some of the history behind the topic that the kids will be learning the next day so that when they arrive, they are ready to jump in.

For example: I was teaching at a high school and working with students in a math elective that we called Math Modeling.  We were going to analyze elections and the various styles that are used throughout the world.  I used flipped learning to present all of the methods that we would be discussing in the unit, one at a time, and their homework was to watch each video the night before we started investigating the new method.  I presented little, to no math content at all in the videos.  They were use to inform the students so they had a solid understanding of the tasks and purpose of the lesson prior to entering the room.

So in summary, my use of Flipped Learning was to present the topic, provide examples of where it is used in real life, and to introduce the purpose of the lesson.  I wanted them to BUY INTO the lesson before they even arrived.  I did not want my students to memorize some basic tool to come in an use 50 times the next day.  I wanted to save time by introducing the lesson, which in turn, I hoped that my students would come in with questions and prepared to dive right in to the lesson.  My high schoole students really seemed to enjoy it and found that the majority of them would watch the videos on their commute to and from school on their phones.

This is a must read for any first time “flipper” because this concept is time consuming and you want to make sure that you still protect the integrity of the learning process.  For those that do this frequently, does your method still protect the learning process?  OR d0 you just use it as a way to present information and drill for skill when they get to class?  Hopefully between Ross’s blog and my use of the flipped classroom, we have opened your eyes to some of the dangers and, what I feel was, effective uses of the flipped classroom!

Check out Ross’s blog!  http://www.rosscoops31.com/2015/09/30/why-i-refused-to-flip-my-classroom/

4 Pillars of Flipped Learning

Flipped Learning has had an AMAZING impact on education over the past few years. In this article,  The Four Pillars of Flipped Learning,  they  discuss how the Flipped Learning Network performed a survey and found that 100% of teachers know the term Flipped Learning and 80% have tried it at least once in the previous school year.

From someone who used the model in class – it can be EXTREMELY powerful when used appropriately.  I used to record myself teaching key concepts to a lesson and assign it to my students to watch at home and return to school with a basic skill to help us build on that skillset during our lesson.  It is time consuming, challenging, but is extremely rewarding when it finally clicks for you studetns and yourself!

The article highlights the 4 essential parts of the Flipped model that are essential to Flipped Learning and not just Flipped Classes.  It discussed how the Flipped Learning Network performed a survey and found that 100% of teachers know the term Flipped Learning and 80% have tried it at least once in the previous school year.

Their Four Pillars are:

  1. Flexible Environment
  2. Learning Culture
  3.  Intentional Content
  4. Professional Educator

If you are one of the 20% who have not attempted Flipped Learning yet, I encourage you to give it a try – test your skills as a teacher to identify need, identify what piece students can learn on their own, build an in class lesson to support their newly learned skill, observe students and provide feedback, then culminate it with an activity to reinforce the skill – BOOM!  Then repeat – like anything else, practice breeds success!