Last year, I felt like a first year teacher. After attending a Techsmith workshop on how to use Camtasia ( video-editing software), I made a commitment to myself that I was going to flip my entire school year. This was a huge task, but I made it and I think my 2012-2013 students enjoyed riding the roller coaster with me. I constantly had my headset on and every free moment that I had, I was on my laptop editing my videos. Most of the time, I was putting my videos online down to the wire. As the year progressed, I got rather fast at the software and was better able to see how I wanted to “layout” the video in my head. My colleagues helped out video taping me explaining things in the lab or had fun being in the videos with me! In my second semester, I asked my students to send me clips of themselves being active (i.e. playing sports, dancing, some even taped themselves on the Tea Cup ride at Disney) so that I could put them in my physics videos. They loved it and were eager to see who would pop up next!
This year, while I was excited to have an entire curriculum of videos in my online “library”, I new that I would need to “tweak” some. I learned how to embed quizzes at the end of last year and knew that I would need to add this feature to my 2013/2014 videos. The quiz questions are not meant to be challenging but to check for basic comprehension and build homework points. I also knew that some of my longer videos needed to be cut down. I was excited to find out that my schools’ website got a face lift over the summer and I now had a better way to organize my videos into folders with accompanying pdf’s, images and reinforcement websites.
I wasn’t terribly excited how my students were taking notes from the videos last year and knew I needed to improve it. I discovered The Cornell Note-Taking System and loved it. My students use this method to take notes during the video and provide a summary at the end. Within 5 days, they must go on their Google Doc Summary page and add that particular videos’ summary with attached link, date of viewing and pertinent trigger images. This on-going document is shared with me. I am able to view and grade it. This document will be so important to have for the final exam review and preparation.
I’m feeling a little better this year about my flipped classroom experience and know that each year it will get better and better. The videos are being cleaned up and streamlined, there are creative openers and endings as well as quizzes. If you have any questions about flipping your classroom, please leave a comment! Thanks for reading!
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