This summer I've been doing a lot of thinking about how my flipped class went last year, and where I want it to go in the future. As you know, this past school year was my first year flipping, and at the start I was thrilled with how it was going. The kids were more engaged, and they were out performing last year's class on almost every assessment. That wasn't the best part, though. The best part was that I knew my class. I mean I really knew them. I could tell you at any given time exactly where each student was, what they did well, and what they needed to continue to work on.
As the year progressed I became less and less content with what I was doing. I didn't change anything about how my math class ran, which I think became the problem. I started to see the potential my students had that was being ignored. At that point, it was so late in the year that I didn't have a lot of opportunity to explore other ways to utilize my in class time. Buzz words like mastery learning and project-based learning kept running through my head, but I am the first to admit I have zero training in either. I don't like that feeling of not knowing exactly what I want to do to improve, but knowing I need to make some changes.
So fast-forward to this morning, when I was grocery shopping, and listening to the Flipped Learning Network Podcast (which, by the way, is a wonderful resource for keeping inspired and knowing you're on the right track). I was listening to week 3, where Troy Cockrum interviewed Ramsey Musallam. I hadn't been following Ramsey yet, so I didn't know much about him, but I had heard his name dropped by several people during other PD's I've been involved in. Anyhow, during this particular segment he was talking about how he explains flipped class. He said (I'm paraphrasing here), think of flipped class like flipping Bloom's Taxonomy. Typically students would do lower order thinking skills in class (with the lecture), then turn around & do the higher order thinking skills at home. Flipped class changes that. Now students are doing the higher order thinking skills at school & the lower level at home. I hadn't thought about it like that...at all. But it totally makes sense. I had a moment, like we love to see in our students, where a light bulb went off & I got it. Now I have some direction for where I need to take my students in the fall...and I have Blooms to guide me.
So for helping the light bulb go off in my head, I say thank-you, Ramsey!