Flipped Classroom


Here’s our first experiment with the “flipped classroom” model.  It’s a video starting the 8th graders out with their research for the Documentary Project.  The idea of a flipped classroom is to have them view the “instruction” at home (whether that’s reading, writing, listening, viewing, etc.) and then they are prepared to practice in the classroom, rather than saving the practice for home, where they might not have anyone who can help them if they get stuck.  It’s not really a new model, but it certainly has been ramped up by all of the available technologies out there – Jing, Flip video cameras, podcasts, etc.  There are a few things I like about this model:

  • They’re going to have more time to do the actual activity.  Before, it might take 20 minutes to explain what we’re going to do, and then they only have another 20 to actually practice.
  • Students can learn at their own pace.  The can stop and start this video, or watch it more than once, or rewind to something that they didn’t get the first time around.
  • I can reinforce what’s being said with text – iMovie lets me do that.  In this video, I run the definition across the bottom of the page while I’m discussing it.
  • It allows me to be creative – look at how I took advantage of my talented colleague!  (Thank you, Shannon!)
  • Students can listen at home when they can give full attention, and not be distracted by each other in class.  (Now, the disadvantage would be if they do not choose to even watch the video!  But we have a homework task attached to it, so they are being told that to be prepared for our in-class activity, they need to complete this “prep work” at home).

One thing I’m thinking of adding is a link where they can ask questions if they want.  Then I can read them before class and address them at the beginning, or if it’s just an issue for one or two students, I can reply specifically to them.


About Paula Montrie

I am a Middle School Librarian at Friends School of Baltimore. I have been a librarian for 11 years, serving 6 years with the Howard County Public School System before arriving at my current school. I teach two classes: SpeechCraft (a combination of information literacy, public speaking and theater), and Media Literacy at the middle school level. I also collaboratively co-teach with a number of teachers at the school, including Music, Geography, and U.S. History. I love it! My professional interests are: information literacy, multiple intelligences and learning styles, teaching through movement, curriculum-writing, technology integration, and bridging the gap between digital natives and digital immigrants. My personal interests are: dancing, singing, knitting, sewing, art, living history, writing and of course - reading!
This entry was posted in 21st Century Libraries, Class Sessions, Information Literacy. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Flipped Classroom

  1. Linda Fowler says:

    I’m interested to know how the students responded to this. iMovie was the perfect tool for giving the instruction. You could have done the same skit in class, but students wouldn’t have see how Shannon used the KWLN form or seen the visual of the definition and assignment. It must have given you more class time to actually get down to work. Great Job!!

  2. Paula Montrie says:

    I think it did work really well. I noticed that the conversations were “deeper” in class, and they had a lot more hands-on time to work. A few who did not do the assignment were able to “learn by NOT doing well” (quote from the teacher) – in terms of realizing that they had little to contribute to the conversation when they were unprepared. So in a way it solidified the responsibility that the members had to each other.

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