Friday, 26 April 2013

Staff Meeting

On Monday we had a whole staff meeting at school, and part of the meeting was a showcase of the use of technology across the school. Our Director of eLearning, Steve, asked me to say a few things about how we are starting to use Flipped Learning in maths across the Middle Years.

It was just a short introduction. I talked about the rationale for trying this teaching method out: we have mixed ability classes and students need to be able to work at a pace that is appropriate for them. I then discussed the initial positive results I was having with my classes: the students seem to have an increased feeling of success when they leave the classroom, they are more independent and they ask me less questions and work better in groups, and I am able to spend more time one-on-one or in small groups with students.

Steve, who has helped me both with the technology side of things and has let me bounce countless ideas off him, put together a little video of how the students are finding flipped learning so far which was also shown to the staff:

As always happens, I wish I had included other information to staff but in the moment I was quite nervous and forgot some things (We have a pretty big teaching staff, over 100 teachers, and as I'm pretty new I still don't know a lot of them!) One of the things I wish I had said to everyone was that I am by no means a highly technological person. I have had to learn new things and still my grasp of what can be done with the videos, iPads, etc in class is still pretty basic. Technology can be intimidating for teachers and a barrier when implementing any other new teaching method, and I can understand people not thinking they have the time or skills to make the videos. So I wanted to reassure teachers that in order to flip learning you don't have to be highly skilled in technology to do it.

Anyway, the presentation was really well received and countless teachers have approached me to say they really enjoyed it, and were inspired to try the same. I am meeting with teachers from English and science over the next few weeks, along with the senior years maths team to talk about my experiences and how flipped learning can be used in their subject area. The school is a really exciting place at the moment - it feels like there is about to be a big shift in teaching and learning and I am so happy to be a part of that change!

Oh, I should also say the other presentation on Monday was a history teacher showing her class doing a project with RSA animations. It looked so cool! I will definitely be thinking about how I can try that out in maths at some point!

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