The Flipped Classroom
Four years ago, in the shadow of Colorado’s Pike’s Peak, veteran Woodland Park High School chemistry teachers Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams stumbled onto an idea. Struggling to find the time to reteach lessons for absent students, they plunked down $50, bought software that allowed them to record and annotate lessons, and posted them online. Absent students appreciated the opportunity to see what they missed. But, surprisingly, so did students who hadn’t missed class. They, too, used the online material, mostly to review and reinforce classroom lessons. And, soon, Bergmann and Sams realized they had the opportunity to radically rethink how they used class time. It’s called “the flipped classroom.” Flipped classroom teachers almost universally agree that it’s not the instructional videos on their own, but how they are integrated into an overall approach, that makes the difference. “Flipping” is rapidly moving into the mainstream. But the ideas behind flipping are not brand new.