What my student think about the flipped classroom
My year 12 IB Physics class is first approaching the completion of a full year of my flipped classroom and I wanted to know what they felt about the experience. So in an attempt to respect their privacy and empower honesty I created a student questionnaire which they could complete at their own discretion.
From the top it is really rewarding to a 100% emphatic yes to both enjoyment of the flipped classroom method and also that they would like to continue with this method next year. This obviously makes me very happy but it is the finer details which my students shared which I hope others will consider.
The students felt that the flipped classroom method was less stressful as they could review without feeling like a hindrance and do this in a time suitable to them. They did however note that getting this right took a little bit of time but now they have a routine and will sometimes do an additional viewing just before the lesson to be better prepared. That preparation is something that they even admit to transferring to other classes by watching related videos.
At the beginning of the year I was using videos which were available online and felt this was an acceptable starting point before I moved onto producing my own clips. Now the majority of my class specifically mentioned that content produced by me was much better as they felt it was additional teacher contact time and I used the exact language which they needed to know. That exact language point is crucial as it highlights my use of specific IB Physics words and symbols which they pick out as being vital for exam success.
I also asked questions about phases of a typical class. They felt positively about starting activities reviewing required knowledge, the opportunity to question their own misconceptions, time to develop and practice skills. Within this there was also a clear feeling in the class that they would happily reduce practical lab time. Now my hands are tied here due to requirements of the IB Physics course but it does make me think that I need to revisit lab work with respect to better integrating a learning aspect.
Another element of my own flipped classroom is the requirement to independently complete related online mastery questions. I use the excellent Minds on Physics tool by allocating specific units and getting the pupils to record their own progress. The students felt the process reduced stress but not requiring work to be handed into a teacher and also by getting immediate feedback. It should be noted that the recently increased game aspect of this tool has seemingly gone down very well with my class (I make this statement based on the impassioned wailing I hear in the corridor when they only have a little bit of life left and they come across a difficult question).
So the key points I want to make about the flipped classroom that I have learnt from my wonderful class:
- Students do learn how to manage themselves to make this method effective
- Making your own video’s really matters with respect to teacher contact and correct syllabus language/ style
- The right online question bank is a great tool for student learning (plus reduces stress on all)
And finally …my year 12 IB Physics flipped classroom really works and so could anyone else’s.