Flipped Learning 014: Flipping an Entire High School with Greg Green


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Brett Clark fills in for Troy Cockrum this week as Guest Host and interviews Greg Green, Principal of Clintondale High School, also known as the Flipped High School.  Brett and Greg discuss how Clintondale became the Flipped High School, what benefits the school saw with Flipped Learning, how other schools can flip, what tools, services, or professional development is need to make it happen, and more.

You can find Greg and his high school at flippedhighschool.com.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning 012: Researching the Flipped Classroom with Jerry Overmyer and Jeremy Renner


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

We have a double episode this week!

Troy interviewed Jerry Overmyer from Northern Colorado and Jeremy Renner from Louisville, Ky.  Both are currently doing or have done academic research on the Flipped Classroom.

In the first part of the podcast, Troy and Jerry discuss his research, the research that is currently available, how Jerry got his start in Flipped Learning, how and why he started the Flipped Class Ning, the history of the Flipped Classroom, blended learning, and more.

In the second part of the podcast, Troy and Jeremy discuss his research, the research that is currently available, how Jeremy got interested in the Flipped Classroom, time shifted material, and more.

You can find the Flipped Class Ning and Jerry at flippedclassroom.org.  You can find Jeremy and his research at theflippedclassroom.org.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning 011: Writing in Math with Crystal Kirch


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Crystal Kirch, a High School Math teacher from Southern California.

They discuss how Crystal uses her WSQ forms to get more writing in her math classes, how she encourages higher level thinking with TWIRLS, student-made videos, Google Forms for feedback, and more.

You can find Crystal’s blog at flippingwithkirch.blogspot.com.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Classrooms: Let’s Change the Discussion

Editor’s Note: Brian E. Bennett (@bennettscience) is a science teacher living in South Bend, Ind. He has spoken nationally and internationally on flipped learning, most recently speaking at ISTE 2012 in San Diego and as the opening keynote speaker at the 2012 Flipped Learning Conference in Chicago. Bennett writes frequently about flipped learning on his blog: Educator, Learner.


Since Sal Khan’s 2011 TED Talk, the Khan Academy has been nearly synonymous with “flipped classrooms.” This is because since then, Khan Academy has been promoted by the Gates Foundation as well as major media outlets like CNN and CBS. But, what the media and outsiders (non-educators) fail to recognize is that Khan Academy is “just a tool” and not a methodology or pedagogy on its own. Debates have raged simultaneously in educators’ circles, especially in social media and blogs, about the benefits (or lack thereof) of flipping. Through all of this, the term “flipped classroom” or even “flipping” has been misconstrued and inaccurately represented. Rather than argue about titles or labels, let’s get into the philosophy of flipping.

We need to change the vocabulary. The term “flipped classroom” has an implication of isolated instances or a single mode of instruction … sort of like, “If you do x, y and z, then you have a flipped classroom.” I want to lay out major themes that can be found in all instances of flipping. Flipped learning as an idea encompasses a variety of individual practices that are tailored from class to class, by teachers, to meet the needs of their students. The practices and methods teachers use vary, just as traditional teaching methods vary from class to class. However, there are philosophical parallels between any two classes that promote flipped learning.

  1. Students have a voice. Flipped learning is about reversing the roles in education. The teacher is no longer the center of attention … students are. Class time is spent focusing on their needs, not on the teacher’s schedule. Students are encouraged to make decisions, question, succeed and fail in a supportive, dynamic learning environment. Choice is rampant in flipped learning, and students are given an opportunity to defend their choices as a partner in learning rather than a subordinate.
  2. Teachers improve their craft. Flipped learning does not mean a teacher can relax and sit back while kids work through computer problems or worksheets. It also does not mean that all content is moved to video. Good pedagogy is absolutely essential, and it is the teacher’s job to continue to provide dynamic and varied learning experiences based on observation and assessment. In fact, a teacher’s ability to differentiate and personalize learning in a flipped setting is enhanced; students are given choices on which activities they want to work through and the teacher can help tailor that path to the strengths and weaknesses of each student or group.
  3. Flipping leads to a fundamental redesign of school. When we reverse learning roles and begin to integrate content that is available anywhere and anytime, the role of school begins to take a fundamental shift. Is class time best spent listening to a teacher when students can find the same content on the Web whenever they want it (or need it)? Of course not. The role of school needs to shift from content delivery to supported learning, whatever that may be. Flipping can help make that shift. Content is supplied as a resource in the learning process rather than the starting point. This can take the shape of video in some cases, PBL or inquiry in others. It depends on the class and the learning goals. There is no single method of content delivery, and in fact, should be a mixture of methods to meet the needs of diverse learners.

Too much of the discussion around flipping has been on the technology. Let’s begin to focus on the philosophical decisions teachers and schools need to make to move education forward in a connected world. For me, flipping the learning process was the best way to make that shift, and that’s simply what it is — a tool to push teaching and learning forward. I am continually learning and improving on what has worked in the past to become a better teacher.

There are thousands of teachers across the country making the same decision. But, there are also teachers who are deciding that flipping is not the best thing for their students, and that is totally fine. Flipped learning is not a one-size-fits-all approach nor is it appropriate in every situation.

In the end, the decision to flip or not to flip can be made by only one person: You. Understand that making the decision to flip (or not flip) your class cannot be done whimsically. No decision you make in your approach to teaching should be. You are responsible for serving your students. Your class will need to meet your student’s needs. No one else can do that for you. Flipping is so much more than using video to deliver content. It is a mindset that requires you to totally rethink the way teachers and students interact on a day to day basis. Let’s talk about why we’re doing what we’re doing and continue to learn from one another.

Image Credit: Robbert van der Steeg on Flickr.

Flipped Learning 009: Flipping PD with Kristin Daniels


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Kristin Daniels from Stillwater Area Public Schools in Minnesota.  She is  leading initiatives in Flipped PD and discusses her process in the interview.  She also discusses the exceptional growth of Flipped Learning in her district, the death of Flipped Learning, and more.

You can find Kristin’s website at FlippedPD.com.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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The Life and Death of Flipped Classroom

This is part two of a two-part post on the definition of Flipped Learning.  Part one, “I’ve Copyrighted ‘Flipped Classroom'”, discusses how the term came about and why it has many misconceptions.


The Wikipedia entry for ‘flip teaching‘ mentions the use of project-based learning (PBL) in a flipped class.  I’ve heard many argue that everything users claim they accomplish with flipped learning, they can also accomplish with PBL or inquiry learning (IL).  I would say I use elements of both in my class, as well as Writer’s Workshop.  They all worked in some regards and I didn’t abandon them entirely.  However, they fell short in different areas…for me.  Flipped Learning allowed me, though, through the use of asynchronous instruction the ability to incorporate all these models into my class based on what I found worked for each lesson or objective.

I thought I’d look up the academic definition of both PBL and IL.

The Buck Institute for Education, widely considered the definitive source on PBL, define it as:

a systematic teaching method that engages students in learning essential knowledge and life-enhancing skills through an extended, student-influenced inquiry process structured around complex, authentic questions and carefully designed products and tasks.”

Interestingly enough, in a summary of research by John W. Thomas (2000), was this sentence:

“First, as Tretten and Zachariou (1997) report in their observation report on Project-Based Learning in multiple classrooms, the variety of practices under the banner of PBL makes it difficult to assess what is and what is not PBL, and whether what you are observing is a ‘real project.'”

This was 1997.  I believe this is where Flipped Learning is now.  There are so many different iterations, it is difficult to pin down what is and what is not Flipped Learning.

Inquiry, I found, is a variation of discovery learning and minimal guidance learning.  Also of interest I found that it was almost exclusively associated with Science and Math.  Since it has been around since the 60s, there is more research on IL.  Granted I didn’t do extensive research as this is a blog and not an academic paper.  I only did what Google provided me over the last hour or so.  But, I found many different definitions for IL.  So, to Wikipedia.  Inquiry learning “describes a range of philosophical, curricular and pedagogical approaches to teaching.”  And further, “Inquiry learning is a form of active learning, where progress is assessed by how well students develop experimental and analytical skills rather than how much knowledge they possess.”

So, where does that leave us?  I would agree that flipped learning in some regards sounds very similar to PBL and IL.  Therefore, defining where one stands in their teaching methods or philosophy becomes difficult.

Recently, some flipclass proponents have begun to postulate that Flipped Learning is not the “flip” of homework with lecture (although that is where the name originated).  It is now more accurately the “flip” of Bloom’s Taxonomy.  Time-shifting some instruction allows the students to spend more time in the higher level process of Bloom’s in the presence of their teacher and thus more time in the lower levels of Bloom’s outside the classroom.

Jon Bergmann and Aaron Sams didn’t coin the term “flipped”.  I would guess that in 2007 when they started their personal journey in this area, they never thought it would lead to where it is now.  So, they probably didn’t spend a lot of time contemplating names.  The term “Flipped Classroom” didn’t even appear until 2010 when Karl Fink and Daniel Pink identified it as such in blog posts.  And, that’s what is so appealing to many.  The Flipped Class is a grassroots movement of teachers searching for a better way to teach.

My work with my podcast, with blogging, with presenting, I believe is helping Flipping Learning grow and become better.  I’m not offering Flipped Learning as the answer to all things bad in education.  I’m not saying Flipped Learning isn’t without some criticism.  What I’ve found is that many flipclass leaders are consistently developing this idea we call Flipped Learning/Teaching/Classroom.  We all challenge each other to think and re-think what we do in and out of the classroom.

Therefore, what Flipped Learning means (to me) is something that works for my teaching style in my classroom for my students.  It is not what defines me or my class.  It is not the only method/technique/tool that I use.  But, most importantly, Flipped Learning causes me to re-evaluate every lesson I do to see if there is a better way.

What does Flipped Learning mean to you?

Image Credits: Kids Working by USM MS photos on Flickr


Troy Cockrum is the host of EdReach’s show Flipped Learning, a show for educators interested in flipping. Flipped Learning interviews educators using flipped learning and highlight best practices and innovated uses for flipped learning. You can follow him on Twitter @tcockrum.

I’ve Copyrighted ‘Flipped Classroom’

First, let me say, I have copyrighted the terms Flipped Classroom, Flipped Learning, Flipped Teaching and #flipclass.  No one in the media can write a story using any of the terms without consulting me.  No company can use any of these terms to promote a product without my approval.  No one can blog or tweet on the topic without my endorsement.  What?  I can’t do that?  Oh, well then, I guess we have a problem.

Yes, the problem is the amount of information and misinformation out there regarding Flipped Classroom/Learning/Teaching.  At ISTE this summer, flipped anything seemed to be the biggest buzz topic outside of #edubros and Buzzword Bingo.  There were a lot of packed full presentations on flipping.  Vendors were screaming out, “Flip you class with [insert product here]”.  The problem is that educational terminology such as this can’t be copyrighted and thus anyone can use the terms correctly or incorrectly.  And, maybe the nail in the coffin was when Sal Khan used the phrase “flip your class” in his TED Talk last year.  Now, flipping was being heralded by the media as the savior of education.  For the record, I haven’t ever heard a flipclass proponent say it is the answer to solving our current education woes.  Also for the record, I haven’t heard Sal Khan say that either. It is generally the media that implies it, and even in some cases says it.  From a CBS News piece on Khan:

“This measurement of progress could be a breakthrough, says Eric Schmidt, the chairman of Google, who tells Gupta that innovation never comes from the institutions themselves, but rather from visionary figures outside those institutions. “Sal is that person in education in my view. He built a platform. If that platform works, that platform could completely change education in America,” says Schmidt.”

I’ll concede, as I believe most flipclass proponents would, that flipping is not the end-all-be-all, silver bullet, magic potion, or panacea to solve all our educational problems.  I just had a meeting today with a local teacher wanting to flip her class.  At the end of the meeting, she said,”I think one of the best things I got from today was that I’m still going to have a lot of the same issues you have in any class…kids not doing homework, kids trying to find shortcuts, whatever, but I also realized I know how to deal with those things and they won’t get in the way of me flipping my class.”

The reason I bring this up is because it is easy to argue with a flipclass opponent that they just don’t understand flipclass and that is why they bash it.  And, sometimes, that is the case.  However, one the questions I ask regularly on my podcast is “What are some valid criticisms of Flipped Learning?”  Because they are out there.  Jon Bergmann, Aaron Sams, Brian Bennett, Ramsey Musallam, and many others regularly revise their teaching methods because of those criticisms.  Many of the criticisms they’ve addressed themselves over the years.  Does that mean they are revising the definition of Flipped Learning in the process? I don’t know.

So, most people would expect me to put the definition of Flipped Learning/Classroom/Teaching here.  The next sentence should read, “Flipped Learning is…..” But, I’m not sure what goes next.  I have a definition of what Flipped Teaching is to me.  But, I’ve had discussions with other flippers that have a slightly different definition.  Flipped Learning is more of a guiding vision.  As Brian Bennett has said, “Flipped Class is an ideology, not a methodology.”  Some people have begun calling it a mindset or mentality.

This got me thinking about how a term becomes defined.  A chair is a chair because we all agree that the word chair refers to a certain object.  But, when the object is not tangible, something we can’t point to or hold, then it becomes more difficult to define.  Constructivism would say that meaning bears little relationship to reality at first, but becomes increasing more complex, differentiated, and realistic as time goes on.  But, how do other education methods, concepts, -isms, etc. come to an accepted definition.  I would say through academic research.  As more academics do independent research on a topic, a definition is narrowed and accepted.

Flipclass proponents will admit there are minimal amounts of academic research using the term “Flipped Learning/Teaching/Classroom”.  From what I’ve seen, Ramsey Musallam has done the most extensive research in the area. He would probably argue that others have, 1) because he’s pretty modest and 2) he has done a lot of research and would know. When Ramsey says, “Eric Mazur from Harvard said…” I just nod my head in amazement. But, the published or unpublished research work I’ve read of his didn’t use the term “flipped” that I recall.  In academic terms, Flipped Learning is still an infant.  We have yet to see what it will grow up to be.  I do know a couple of people entering PhD programs in the next year or two who intend to do research in Flipped Learning.  Whether their intentions will result into fruition remains to be seen.

In this age of social media and the internet, we do have a definitive resource on what is the true meaning of everything.  Yes, I’m talking about Wikipedia.  (On a side note, if you haven’t read “Drive” by Daniel Pink, do so.  His comparison of Wikipedia and Encarta is brilliant.  Remember Encarta?)

Wikipedia defines Flip Teaching as:

a form of blended learning which encompasses any use of Internet technology to leverage the learning in a classroom, so a teacher can spend more time interacting with students instead of lecturing. This is most commonly being done using teacher created videos that students view outside of class time. It is also known as backwards classroom, reverse instruction and reverse teaching.
The traditional pattern of secondary education has been to have classroom lectures, in which the teacher explains a topic, followed by homework, in which the student does exercises. In flip teaching, the student first studies the topic by himself, typically using video lessons created by the instructor or shared by another educator, such as those provided by the Khan Academy. In the classroom, the pupil then tries to apply the knowledge by solving problems and doing practical work. The role of the classroom teacher is then to tutor the student when they become stuck, rather than to impart the initial lesson. This allows time inside the class to be used for additional learning-based activities, including use of differentiated instruction and project-based learning.
Flip teaching allows more hands-on time with the instructor guiding the students, allowing them to assist the students when they are assimilating information and creating new ideas (upper end of Bloom’s Taxonomy).

I’m OK with that definition.  They did cite me as one of their sources, so I guess I should be.

I had a discussion with a very well respected EdTech guru recently.  I won’t mention his name because our conversation was “off the record” so to speak, a discussion between two friends.  I hope to get him “on the record” in an upcoming podcast, but I won’t use his name until then.  However, he told me that he doesn’t like the Flipped Class.  Not because he doesn’t agree that some teachers are using it well, but because the misconceptions cause bad teachers to still be bad teachers but think they’ve improved their pedagogy.  His argument is since so many people have been using the term to mean so many different things, good teachers should distance themselves from the term and let it die a slow death.  That seems like a good solution for some.  Others believe that is a defeatist attitude and would rather keep speaking out until the misconceptions of what good flipped teaching is becomes more widespread.  And, quite frankly, some have said, “I don’t care what you call it.  Argue all you want naysayers. I know what works for my class and that’s ultimately where my responsibilities lie.”  I’ve been in all three camps at various times in my personal journey.

Where do you think the term “Flipped Classroom” is going?

Image Credits: Flipped Classroom by Tm_Hobbs on Flickr

 


Troy Cockrum is the host of EdReach’s show Flipped Learning, a show for educators interested in flipping. Flipped Learning interviews educators using flipped learning and highlights best practices and innovative uses for flipped learning. You can follow him on Twitter @tcockrum.

Flipped Learning #008: Elementary Flipping with Lisa Highfill


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Elementary Flipper Lisa Highfill at ISTE.  Lisa discusses the unique elements of flipping an elementary classroom, elementary modalities, the need for more Language Arts flipping, using flipping for test review, Explore-Flip-Apply, lifehacking, and more.

You can find Lisa’s website at sites.google.com/site/lisahighfill

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #007: Flipping for Math with Andy Schwen


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show: 

Troy had a great opportunity to interview Math teacher Andy Schwen at the Flipcon12 in Chicago.  You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Conference by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #006: Flipper Marc Seigel is an Island of Hope


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed New Jersey Flipper Marc Seigel at Flipcon12. Marc discusses his predictions for Flipped Learning and the Khan Academy, his positive blogging experiences, recommedations to build your PLN, and more.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #005: The Faces of Flipped Class [ISTE Panel]


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

This podcast is a recording of the Faces of Flipped Class panel presented at ISTE in San Diego.  The panelists are: Aaron Sams, Brian Bennett, Jonathan Bergmann, Meloney Cargill, Dawn Sanchez, April Gudenrath, Eric Marcos, Ramsey Musallam, Stacey Roshan, Dan Spencer, and Kristin Daniels.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #004: Jac de Haan Gets Interactive with Flipped Learning


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Jac de Haan at Flipcon12.  Jac is a creative educator from Seattle that specializes in 1:1 iPad environments and using a variety of products to create interactive learning tools used in Flipped Classrooms.  Jac discusses why he got involved with Flipped Learning, where he believes the future of Flipped Learning is going, and more.

Jac’s website is www.technologywithintention.com.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #003: Flipping Blooms with Ramsey Musallam


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Ramsey Musallam, Chemistry Flipper and EdTech leader from San Fransisco.  Ramsey discusses his innovative uses of Explore-Flip-Apply, how he flips Blooms Taxonomy, how all disciplines can create an inquiry based learning cycle using Flipped Learning, and more.

Ramsey’s website is www.flipteaching.com.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Network by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #002: Flipper Brian Bennett Talks Innovative Learning Environments


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show:

Troy interviewed Chemistry Flipper Brian Bennett.  Brian and Troy discuss what innovated learning environments should look like.  Brian also talks about his keynoting Flipcon12 in Chicago, how new teachers can get into flipping, how all students are capable of critical thinking, and more.

You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Conference by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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Flipped Learning #001: Flipped Class Pioneer Aaron Sams Speaks


This week on the Flipped Learning Network Show: 

Troy interviewed Flipped Class pioneer and Flipped Learning Network co-founder Aaron Sams.  They discuss the future of Flipped Learning, the creation of the Flipped Learning Network, the differences between Flipped Learning and Blended Learning, Flipped Mastery, and more.  You can also catch up on a lot of resources from the Flipped Learning Conference by going to www.flippedlearning.org.

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TED: Poised to be the Biggest Brand in Education

If you were to walk up on the street and ask the average Joe the Plumber what they thought when you said the word “education,” what would they tell you?

“Unions.”

“Teacher strikes.

“Budgets.”

If you were to ask them the same question about what was education’s biggest brand, they might say…Pearson? Or Houghton Mifflin. (“who?”)

That’s one of education’s inherent problems. Education is not associated with a brand, per se. It’s associated with…dreck. Nobody in the general public gives a toot about teachers’ squabbles or the name of a testing company. That’s a big problem if we are to make education rise above all else. There is one company, however, that’s ever-so slyly making a rise to the top of the eduction sphere.

That company is TED. While TED doesn’t point itself out as an education company, their missions and goals have all of the earmarks of Taking Education Forward. From their About Us page:

Our mission: Spreading ideas.

I don’t know, but that sounds like the mission of a company that’s interested in education. Let’s also look at the most recent developments of TED, which would be TEDed. If the original version of TED.com is basically giving standard lectures, TEDed would stand to be the evolution of “sit-and-get” lessons by including a teacher-led piece into the mix. One of my biggest annoyances with Kahn Academy was that they have been very bad at involving real teachers who are great at what they do.  With TEDed, a real, honest-to-God teacher is giving the lesson, then it’s being handed off to an animator, then teachers around the world are asked to “flip” that lesson by adding their own questions, and inserting their own curriculum into the mix. That is collaboration.

I’ve been flipping my lessons for 4 years, and TEDed is the first flipped lesson platform that shows real potential.

Watch this lesson from April Gudenrath called Insults by Shakespeare:

Remember how difficult it was to read Shakespeare in high school? Not only was it scary for students to learn, but you, most likely, had a teacher who was more scared about teaching Shakespeare to you, then you were about learning it. What we needed was an introduction to Shakespeare that took the edge off- that made us comfortable with the style. We needed pre-teaching, which is exactly what Ramsey Mussalam makes such a good case of in his YouTube Teacher’s Studio lesson on Flipped Teaching. We needed to give our schema something to grasp on to.

Recognizing the Brand

TED has been educating us for the past few years online- it’s only now that they’re starting to look more and more like their mission is education. TED has something many other education companies never thought of: a brand. They have a recognizable logo, they have a format, a presentation style, something that screams, “I know what that is, and who it comes from.”  They also have something called brand association. When you see the TED logo, when you hear a TED Talk or lesson, you feel something positive.  You also associate the word idea with TED. And you also know what a TED Talk is, versus, just a simple keynote. When you hear the word Pearson, the only thing you probably feel is a sick stomach (test anxiety coming back?).

The question that quickly comes to mind is: why has no other education companies ever cared about branding?

Just a couple weeks ago, this video clip appeared online. It’s from a purported TED Talk from the year 2023. If TED’s mission is to share ideas, and be the biggest brand associated with sharing ideas, then we have a lot to look forward to.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUxdAWrsag8

 

EdGamer 47: Is Khan Academy a Monday Solution?


 

Sylvia Martinez, president of Generation YES, is our guest this week and she helps us answer an important question. Is Khan Academy a Monday solution?

“This is the Monday… Someday problem – the fact that even if a teacher changes everything in their classroom, nothing else in the system will change. How can one argue for a long term (Someday) overhaul of math curriculum, pedagogy and assessment when you know even if it does change, it’s going to be long time from now, and you have kids coming in on Monday who need to pass a test on Friday that will depend on them memorizing a bunch of facts and skills? What good does it do to fight when the system not only doesn’t care, but will slap you down for it.”

We discuss this issue, gamification, and explore different aspects of constructivist learning. We learned a lot and you will too in this week’s EdGamer!


Show Host: Zack Gilbert

Show Contributor: Gerry James

Special Guests: Sylvia Martinez



Contact us with any questions or comments- edgamer@edreach.us