As an instructional tech facilitator my goal is to help teachers progress through the stages of technology adoption to get to the point at which they are using technology as a tool for learning, rather than using it as an add on to supplement traditional learning activities. To do that successfully, teachers must adjust their roles, moving from traditional teacher to learning coach or facilitator. Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams are a couple of innovative teachers who have developed an approach to teaching and learning known as The Flipped Classroom, which certainly supports the idea of teachers as learning coaches.
At it’s most basic level, The Flipped Classroom approach means front loading the learning and assigning the prep work as homework in order for students to come to class prepared to use it. This means the classroom becomes a place for collaboration, critical thinking, creativity and communication where the teacher serves as a facilitator who interacts with students, assesses them, and spontaneously pulls together groups for reteaching and challenge. The Flipped Classroom is a place where students are actively engaged in applying the learning and it is noisy and unpredictable. Worksheets as homework become obsolete and students no longer sit in the classroom listening to lectures. Essentially, The Flipped Classroom is a place where “the teachable moment” comes alive.
If you want to learn more about The Flipped Classroom, please watch the video below and also check out The Flipped Classroom Network, a social network where Flipped Teachers share their experiences and learn from each other. As for me, I am excited to Flip the professional development classes I’m teaching this summer.