Soil your are involved in education and haven’t been living under a rock for the last couple years you have heard of something called the flipped classroom. The basis of which is the idea that the information dump, I.e. direct instruction, should take place outside the classroom as homework and then students can work to master the knowledge with the instructor present. This approach has some benefits, but it starts with a flawed concept. It concedes that direct instruction is an important part of the process. Even then, the concept is far from new. I the past it was just read this passage or chapter before coming to class. How is presenting the same information as a lecture considered pedagogically more advanced?

The flipped class has done something to improve education, but not what you think. It has actually inspired numerous teachers to produce their own educational content online where anyone can see it. In fact many of our students already use online videos to learn. If a student doesn’t know something, he or she usually googles it. This often brings up videos to explain the subject. Now the quality of many of these videos are poor and often students do not know how to tell the difference.

Ultimately the choice should not be wether a student sits passively at home or at school. Engagement should not be viewed as wether a student is watching, but wether they are interacting. We need to look at how we can engage students both in class and online. How do we scaffold and engage with a device. This is something well within our ability, but still needs to work out.

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