Thursday, 11 August 2011

Education Rethink - The Flipped Classroom or the Khan Academy phenomenon

This summer as I've been thinking about current developments in teaching I've come across the concept of reverse instruction.  This seems like a really important development and one, by increasing a students' independence and self-direction by flipping the responsibility for learning onto the student, which is analogous with library aims.    Here is what I've found.

A useful introduction to the concept and discussion by leading thinkers in the field here. (65 minutes long)

There are lots of questions being asked, especially in America.  I would love to know if teachers in the UK are using, or planning to use,  this concept.  More explanation in this presentation by Jackie Gerstein

Seems like some are having real success

When I moved to school librarianship I was greatly surprised, in fact pretty appalled, by the lack of traditional book based learning skills and independence: the kids just couldn't or wouldn't engage with and extract information from books.  They were very passive and non-curious learners in lesson time and yet out of lesson time, on getting to know each individual, each had there own passions and enthusiasms.  If  content delivery by video as homework can free up teacher time to provide meaningful and engaging interactions at school  then teachers will be constructively using their professional skills. 

So initially, it seems to me, that the flipped classroom, by offering more inquiry and exploration based learning, might offer some solutions to these problems.  Certainly seems to be another useful tool in the teachers' toolkit.   

What do you think?

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