If you have anything to do with the Education Field, you’ve probably already been exposed to one of the latest and hottest
topics in education - a “flipped classroom.” If you are unfamiliar with the concept, it basically works like this:
It’s not really hard to see the advantages here. Students can watch the pre-recorded lesson as many times as they need to
grasp the concepts. Then, when they really need help – while working on practice problems or a project, the teacher is
right there to support them with their expert knowledge.
When I first read about flipped classrooms, I immediately
visualized how well this would work with a math class. But as I pondered it more, I realized how effective a flipped
classroom could be in language learning.
Consider this narrative. Kelsey is teaching 5th graders in Japan about the English Language Past Tense. So she pre-records
her lecture, including examples writing on the board, and a lot of verbal examples. The students download her lecture from
their school website and watch it at home. The kids who feel pretty confident using the past tense watch it once. The ones
who need a bit more practice watch it a few times, going back, repeating pronunciation in the privacy of their bedroom,
free from the intimidating eyes of others, which may have hindered their classroom participation in a traditional lecture
The next day Kelsey has the students working in small groups on preparing a mock news broadcast which includes yesterday’s
top stories. Kelsey is there to answer any questions, check over the scripts the students are writing, lend some insight
and ideas, and monitor pronunciation as the students practice.
None of the students feel lost or behind. Kelsey
won’t be surprised at the end product when the students present their “broadcast.” And most importantly, the student
learning was maximized.