Flipped classrooms and rich learning.
Having been a high school teacher for years I understand the pitfalls which some teachers associate with flipped classrooms. I'm not talking about upturned desks, although that can certainly happen. However, as an online teacher, flipped lessons are a highly effective teaching methodology.
So firstly the traditional unflipped classroom. From my own experience as an online learner it rolls like this:
1) the lesson starts and I am asked about my week (past tenses. check);
2) I am given an article to read aloud (pronunciation. check);
3) I am asked comprehension and vocabulary questions (comprehension, vocabulary check);
I'll let you into the secret though (a secret I share with all the teachers I have tried). I can not read an article out loud that I have never read, knowing you will be listening to my pronunciation, and comprehend the meaning at the same time. So unless I plan to be reading out loud a lot, the exercise doesn't help me that much.
So how do you change things for your learner? Flip it!
1) reading - it's pre-study for the lesson to get them familiar with ideas. Get learners to read the article and write down vocabulary and/or ideas they want clarification with. These will be discussed in the lesson. Listen for repeated pronunciation problems, not picking on every single word said incorrectly.
2) Listening activities - same as above: pre-study
3) Give them a list of questions that you intend to ask about on the article: listening. This is...you guessed it: pre-study
This is called a learner-centred approach because you aren't teaching learners things they already know. They are also primed for the class. They also know that you have thought about what you are doing prior to the class. You aren't just pulling out the old article on 'bike paths in cities' again.
So what do you do in the lesson then?
Discuss ideas and through this check pronunciation during real conversation, rather than through reading out loud. (If you really want to hear them reading maybe they could record themselves prior to the lesson and send it to you?)
Develop ideas. Add new material to compliment and deepen ideas around the subject.
Oh and finish your lesson with a reflection. The end of a lesson in part the learning process. I will often use reflection tools such as a plus, minus, interesting chart. This not only empowers learners, but also gives you great feedback on what is and isn't working for them.
Motivated enough to learn, wanting to maximise their time in the session, your students will benefit deeply from this learning model. I promise.
**Oh and to end. I'm learning French and if you are a teacher who uses flipped learning, let me know, because I want to book a class with you!**