Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Showcase: The Flipped Classroom

One of the goals of the LPS Instructional Technology blog is to continue to showcase the great work being done in Littleton Public School classrooms. So I am thrilled to share with you some great work being done at Franklin Elementary School. A team of 3rd, 4th and 5th grade teachers are Flipping their Math classes.

One post is not enough to really cover this topic, but feel free to contact these teachers or comment on this post to ask questions.

Below is a short post from Sara Tierney a 4th/5th grade teacher at Franklin about what Flipping looks like at Franklin Elementary in addition to resources to continue learning about a Flipped classroom.
By Sara Tierney ( 4th/5th grade teacher at Franklin Elementary in Littleton Public Schools, CO ) (In conjunction with Tracy McCandless, Sheryl Goutell, Neil Heimbigner, Alberta Maybee and Jill Maxey)

A flipped classroom is not when the teachers put the desks on the ceiling! No, instead ‘flipped learning’ is when students get their instruction or traditional lecture (usually through a video but not always) at home and do their ‘homework (independent practice)’ at school. Flipped learning allows for the teacher to have more time working with students in small groups, a large group or one-on-one. By attaining the instruction outside of the classroom first,  more time can be spent in class answering questions, challenging ideas and differentiating among the students.

A Flipped Classroom at Franklin IS:A Flipped Classroom at Franklin IS NOT:
a method to have more time spent conferring side by side with kids and less time lecturing in front of them.all about the videos! It can be done without using videos.
so helpful when students are absent b/c they get the same instruction their peers had!a means to end the use of teachers in school. The most important part of flipping is what happens in the classroom when teachers are having more time to work with kids. Just watching videos is NOT FLIPPING!
a way for students to pause, rewind and rewatch teachers teach so they can learn at their own pace. They can even watch the videos weeks or months later to review. “the end all be all” of instruction. It is one method that I believe has met the needs of my learners and increased achievement.
a powerful instructional practice for teachers that are frustrated with lack of time working with kids.easy. Creating the videos/information prior to each day’s lesson can be time-consuming and uncomfortable. Your teaching will be viewed by students and possibly parents and other teachers.
an amazing tool for teachers working together. Creating and reflecting on videos as well as discussions of best-practice makes for better teachers and teammates.easier for kids. Students at our school have to take notes as they watch the videos, summarizing the focus then do the independent work in class and finish class by doing an exit slip (1 or 2 questions based on the learning goal). They have to be very responsible and organized!
perfect for teachers that talk too much (like me!). Making videos forces me to get to the point and focus my teaching to 10 minutes or less, helping all students identify the learning goal and stay engaged.necessarily cheap. I use Camtasia to create my videos. I love Camtasia but it costs around $150 to purchase.

Use already made videos
Learn Zillion
Khan Academy

Learn About the Flipped Classroom
Flipped Learning Classroom
The Flipped Class Network: Collaborate with other teachers getting started or further along the process


Blogs to follow
Franklin Team that is Flipping
Tracy McCandless - 3rd/4th grade teacher
( - class webpage

Sara Tierney - 4th/5th grade teacher
( - class webpage
Sheryl Goutell - 5th grade teacher
( - class webpage

Neil Heimbigner - 5th grade teacher
( - class webpage

Alberta Maybee - 5th grade teacher
( - class webpage
Jill Maxey - Gifted and Talented Teacher 

( - class webpage

Share your thoughts about Flipping the Classroom

Are you a student in a flipped classroom?  

  • How is it going?  What do you like about it? What are the downsides?

Are you a teacher thinking about flipping?

  • What questions do you have?  
  • What successes/struggles have you faced?  

Feel free to contact Sara Tierney ( or Sheryl Goutell (  if you wish to come observe a Flipped Classroom in action.

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