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Have you ever had that moment right after you finish a demo or discussion where the door creaks open and in walks a student who is 15 minutes late? Or, better yet, when you’ve finished giving directions for the day and a student reminds you they’ve been absent and have no idea what you’re talking about?
These are typical situations many art teachers encounter. Repeating yourself and constantly re-teaching material can become frustrating and tiring. However, there is a solution!
If you’re unfamiliar, the flipped classroom model is a way to create a student-centered atmosphere that promotes engagement and learning using pre-recorded instructional videos and other methods.
You can learn about the basics of flipping here:
What’s more, flipping works for all teaching models; create videos to share steps in a lesson, videos to introduce a theme or big idea, or even videos to share artistic techniques or classroom rules and procedures.
If you know a student is going to be absent ahead of time, you can share a link to the information they’ll miss before they go. Include a brief description of what they’ll be learning so they know what to expect. This way, the student may be able to watch the video or read the notes from home. When they return, they’ll be ready to apply the information in class.
If your student has a smart device, you can text or email the link right to them. But writing it down on a sticky note or in their school planner also works!
While option one is nice, it’s rare you’ll know about a student absence ahead of time. Or, even if you do, they may not have access to the necessary technology to access the content at home. With flipped learning, however, catching up once they’re back at school is easy.
Once the student is back at school, set them up with a computer, iPad, or other device and a set of headphones so they can watch the required information. It’s nice to have a designated area in your room for this purpose. However, if you’re short on space or tech, the library can be a great space for this as well.
Remember, although creating videos is what usually comes to mind when flipping, there are other methods to consider as well. Digital notes with supplemental photos can be just as effective. Google Classrooms and SMORE are two great platforms to try.
In the same vein, don’t feel like you have to flip your entire classroom to reap the benefits. You could choose to flip certain courses you teach, certain lessons or projects, or certain demonstrations. It’s all about finding a style and method that works for you and your students.
Regardless of what you choose, flipped learning can become an invaluable resource in your classroom. Not only does it promote student-centered learning, it is a huge time saver on your part when it comes to absent students. More importantly, it allows your students to receive the same high-quality instruction and information no matter what!
How have you used flipped learning in the classroom?
What systems do you have in place to help support students who are absent?
Magazine articles and podcasts are opinions of professional education contributors from across the nation and do not necessarily represent the position of the Art of Education University or any of its academic offerings.