Pre-Flipping the Classroom


My school has started to hold “Flipping the Classroom” discussions after school to promote awareness about flipping and encourage us to try flipping with a supportive environment. I must say I am intrigued with the idea. I don’t think completely flipping my classroom would ever work for me because I try to expose students to many concepts through hands-on, investigative group activities… so my students are not just taking notes on a daily basis anyways. However, I do believe that it could work great for certain topics. Technology shouldn’t be too big of an issue since all of my STEM students have laptops and Internet access at home.


My current plan is to flip one lesson in one of my two algebra 1 classes. I am going to make a video on how to calculate x- and y- intercepts given an equation in standard form. I will give students an accompanying notes page to complete while they watch the video (this will hopefully keep them focused and allow me to see who watched it). I’m going to assign this the first week in December and give students two nights to watch and record notes. Then, in class, we’ll do one more example together and I’ll have some group activity for students to complete. At the end of class, I’ll give students an exit slip to assess their ability to calculate the intercepts.


Why am I only doing this with one of my classes? For comparison. If flipping didn’t exist, I would introduce the topic at the beginning of our 48-minute class, give notes, do examples, let students practice, and then assign the exit slip. So I’m still going to do this with my second class, and then compare the results of the exit slips. I can’t wait to see how the classes compare.


Since I’m a newbie at this I would definitely appreciate any advice other flippers have!




11 thoughts on “Pre-Flipping the Classroom

  1. Hi,
    I,too, have heard much about flipping the classroom. I also could not do it totally and introduced more small group work, similar to your methods. My greatest issue is instilling in my student (the lower level kids) the desire to work, to share, to discuss.
    We also lack technology that is suggested to be used.
    Please keep me posted on how and what works and I will share mine.
    Thank you for sharing and for your wonderful website.

  2. Hi Heather, Have you read NCTM President Linda M. Gojak’s article To Flip or Not to Flip: That Is NOT the Question! ? She poses several questions to consider when flipping. Basically she says if instruction is being extended to the home, we need to ask ourselves:

    Will students be engaged with the mathematics content?
    Is their home environment conducive to learning?
    Is it accessible for all students?
    Is questioning used to monitor and promote understanding?
    Is this helping students make sense of the mathematics content?

    She then follows up with several other questions to consider. It is certainly not an anti-flip article, but one that poses thoughtful questions.

    I also wrote about flipped learning, albeit, from a different perspective.

    Good luck and please share what you’ve learned.

  3. Pingback: “Flipping” the Math Classroom | I Speak Math

  4. I’ve been flipping this year and love it. It’s interesting you say that you don’t think you’ll flip totally because you do a lot of investigative group stuff because that’s exactly why I am doing it. The lecture videos I make are supplements. The important learning happens during class, but then the videos are there for a little extra help if kids need it. I do try to get them to watch the videos ahead of time, but that’s not usually how it goes.

      • Students have generally liked it. I think they’re used to thinking of homework as unnecessary busywork so they like the change. Their homework now is either watching a video or solving a few focused problems.

        I’m new to blogging, but I’ll try to make it good 😉

  5. I can’t wait to hear how it goes. I haven’t done any flipping yet, but it’s been on my mind. I applaud you for trying it! I also teach Algebra 1 and may consider it for an upcoming unit or topic. I had a thought about your outline…students are given two days to watch the video so I assume on the first day they are doing some other topic in class and then on the second day you are going through your group activity, expecting they all watched the video at home. Rather than go through an example in class together before the group work, maybe give them an entrance slip (1 question) that they do on a note card, you collect and then put them into two piles correct and incorrect. This will allow you to see at the start of the lesson where their understanding is & where their misconceptions are (and it’s pretty quick to do). I have used the “Favorite Yes/Favorite No” method (see description here of going over said problem after collecting them, which usually provides a good example of common mistakes within a problem and helps the students because you are going over a problem they just did. This will also give you the information you need to make sure they will be successful during the groupwork and while they are doing the groupwork you can walk around and touch base with the students who made mistakes on the entrance slip to make sure they understand. And follow up with your exit slip to assess where they are after the lesson. Granted I don’t know how many minutes of class you have, but I have about 43 and have been able to do both entrance and exit in same day if necessary. I apologize for the length of this comment, but I got excited about someone flipping a class that I can relate to and wanted to share a new entrance slip method that I just came across this year and love!

    I would love to hear what group work you came up with for the students too, I already taught this topic, but they are still struggling with it and could probably use more review!

    Thanks for posting, I look forward to hearing all about it!

  6. Pingback: Post-Flipping the Classroom | Growing Exponentially

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