The Midwest Education Technology Community Conference advisory committee is excited to bring back book reviews of materials that we will offer at the conference this February. Two area educators volunteered to read and review Flipped Learning: Gateway to Student Engagement. This book, an ISTE publication, has identified its audience as administrators, curriculum coordinators, educators (6-12) and technology coordinators.
Have you read this book? Here’s what our reviewers had to say:
Reviewed by Angela Cartee, Professional Learning Technology Specialist, Special School District
What is the best use of face-to-face time with students? That’s the one question posed by Jonathon Bergmann and Aaron Sams in their newest book Flipped Learning: Gateway to Student Engagement. Is it inquiry? Problem Solving? Discussions? Problem-based Learning? Guided Practice? Direct Instruction? The answer is,“yes!” There is no one answer because flipped learning is not a set process or a single strategy. It is a transformation that focuses on learning rather than teaching.
The authors offer a deeper understanding of what flipped learning is, the benefits and implementation ideas. This book is a “why to” that answers many pedagogical questions about instruction. It offers a deeper explanation of individualized learning and learner-centric classrooms. If you’re looking for more (and better) ways to integrate technology into the classroom, you’ll find them here.
Transforming classrooms, faculty meetings, or professional development sessions can be difficult; however, this book offers scenarios and suggestions to keep you thinking.
Reviewed by Eve Diehl, Library Media Specialist, Parkway School District
In this book, Jonathon Bergmann and Aaron Sams first remind readers of the basic idea of the “flipped classroom,” in which direct instruction is given primarily through videos that students access outside of the class time, while in-class time is used for activities traditionally considered to be homework. The main focus of the book is to inspire teachers to move beyond these basics to the concept of “flipped learning,” which extends the idea of the flipped classroom. The introductory chapters describe some of the philosophy behind flipped learning and the key components that need to be present in the classroom to meet the model. The authors introduce us to the “One Question” that guides the flipped learning model, “What is the best use of face-to-face time with students?”
The book emphasizes the idea that flipped learning is a grassroots approach to educational reform. It is something meaningful that teachers can do to transform their classrooms, without depending upon a mandate from above. This is illustrated through the subsequent chapters of the book as we hear personal stories from teachers all over the country who are finding success with the flipped learning model. The stories come from a wide variety of content areas, including social studies, English and even physical education. The teachers reflect on the “One Question,” and all teachers in the book conclude that direct instruction is not the best use of face-to-face time; they realize that in-class time is more effective when it is student-centered, not teacher-centered.
One appealing aspect of all the personal stories is that they seem attainable since the teachers implement the flipped learning model through a gradual process. The teachers start off Year 1 at the basic “flipped classroom” level, where they mainly focus on making videos. Then, in subsequent years, they all realize the need to take the model further into flipped learning, which involves different things for different teachers and content areas. Some of the characteristics of flipped learning include allowing students to move through content at their own pace, demonstrating mastery of a topic in creative ways, interacting with and teaching peers and developing stronger relationships with their teachers so individual learning needs are met. This book provides a strong mix of theory and practice that will enable teachers to put the flipped classroom to work right away at whatever level they feel comfortable.
Purchase this book, and others, at METC. Or, order beforehand (at a discounted rate) and pick up your new reads at the conference.