Challenge #7 Blended Learning

The approach I’d like to work with in my classroom is the flipped classroom. This form of learning would offer my students more autonomy regarding the literary devices we will be studying in the classroom in relation to the texts we cover each week. According to the article by Amira Awaad, “one benefit to students of a blended-learning approach has been the driver of our school’s work: preparedness.” By getting my students accustomed to thinking ahead about their learning in regards to the week’s lessons, I will be training them to be more organized and prepared. This plays into one of the goals I have as a teacher of high school students which is to prepare them for life after school. This skill of looking ahead and being prepared will give them a leg up on their competition in the working world.

Likewise, other benefits students may experience through a flipped classroom are the abilities to work independently and to collaborate with others, while seeking additional help and explanation when necessary. I think I may be able to accomplish more with my students it they were to receive the direct instruction before coming to class.

Measurements I would utilize for this will be formative and summative assessments. Additionally, through group participation and individualized questioning, I should be able to determine if learning is occurring.

The approach I would take would be to post short 5-10 minute videos at the beginning of the week using Loom, introducing the literary terms we will be dealing with throughout that week. This will afford students the ability to go back and revisit the video as needed should they need to review the terminology, examples, or concepts. Then, depending on the texts being read for the week, students will be able to apply the literary terminology to the texts through the selection of different activities, group projects, or individualized approaches. This will afford students the autonomy to select different ways to show their understanding of the materials through a variety of choices. Likewise, this should give students the freedom to collaborate with others to create products that reflect the learning that has taken place.

The model I would be using is a flipped classroom. After students view the Loom lessons posted each week, they will receive a list of the required readings for the week. With each reading, students will be given a list of options they can use to apply the information learned from the Loom videos to the texts for the week. Students will be given a list of options regarding how they can show this learning, ranging from group projects, to individual activities. The options will depend upon the texts read for the week, as well as the literary terms associated with the readings. This model will afford me, as the teacher, to rotate throughout the classroom, answering questions, and instructing students regarding the choices in assessments they make. Additionally, I will be given the opportunity to encourage students to stretch themselves beyond their comfort zones to experiment with different modes of expression.

The digital technologies I would use to support my instruction would begin with Loom for recordings of lessons for student viewing. Based on the student work for the week, different technologies would be introduced to students such as Mindmeister, Canva, Glogster, Storyboard, and others. Through the flipped classroom style, more time would be available during in-person instruction to teach students how to use different tech tools. This would afford them more independence and freedom in completing assignments.

Towards the beginning of the week, I’d like to solidify lessons viewed by students through the creation of discussion groups. Then, throughout the course of the week, students will have the ability to select from a list of activities to choose the way in which they show what they’ve learned. Towards the end of the week, different students will be chosen to present their projects to the class. This will afford students the experience of getting up in front of their peers and speaking, as well as showing the application of the lessons they’ve learned.



2 thoughts on “Challenge #7 Blended Learning

  1. Hello, Andrea!

    I’m so excited to interact with you on this post. I teach K-4 general music, which is WORLDS away from your high school English classes.

    If you’re interested in this learning model, check out Twitter. I’ve participated in several of the #flipclasschat sessions and that group is super inviting and friendly. They always have great ideas and are willing to share with anyone and everyone.

    Are you and your students in-person yet? As you stated, this would be great for you to walk around the room and check in with students but it could also still be beneficial for learning at home. If you were to follow this blended learning model, you could provide the majority of your instruction through videos and then meet with students one-on-one or in groups in a chat room and assess the depth of their learning through discussion. Now that I’ve typed that, it sounds like it would work in any situation really, assuming that your students have access to the technology and an internet connection.

    Last thing, how do you like Loom? Thanks for sharing!
    -Caitlin Hale

    1. Thanks for the great response! I’ll definitely have to check out the chat sessions to get creative ideas on how to use the tech tool.

      Our school has been in person since the beginning of the school year. However, we were shut down for two weeks because of the number of students and staff who were quarantined. We came back last Wednesday. I like your ideas regarding ways to use the flipped classroom. I see a lot of potential with it. My only concern is for those students who don’t log in and listen/participate on their own before coming to class. I wonder if it will leave them further behind, or offer them the freedom to participate at their own pace.

      I’ve just started using Loom here and there. I do like it, but would love to have more time to play with it.

      Thanks for the input!

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