EDU720 Week 5: Integrating Online and Face-to-Face Activities
This week, as we are getting ready to pilot our flipped classroom activities, we focused on the need to integrate said activities with wider module or programme of study. Reflecting back on the week, I feel it was useful to have some time to focus on how the flipped learning activities will integrate if only to ensure they are not siloed and seen as a ‘gimmicky’ activity by the students not really connected to the rest of the module or the wider learning objectives.
Thinking about how the flipped learning activity will be integrated with other aspects of my micro-teach session as a whole, I wanted to put an emphasis on the independent research element of the task and ensure that this directly informs the in-class discussion, where the shared independent research would be the main focus. My flipped learning activity started out as a way of re-imagining the ice breaker from the first pilot of my micro-teach session but, based on the reading and further research conducted in this EDU720 module, I quickly decided to bring in different aspects to expand the task, such as a project-based approach outlined by Aaron Sams (Aaron Sams – Flipped Classroom: The Next Step, 2015). Not only does this encourage independent learning, but it focuses the students on the assessment task from the start. With this in mind, I decided to add an extra forth podcast which outlines the assessment task and the project-based approach that I wanted my students to take. I hoped this link between the assessment and independent learning in the flipped activity, would strongly embed it into the rest of the module – beyond the bounds of the micro-teach session – and this was something that my peers on the course agreed with. Federica said: ‘ I really applaud the link to researching as part of the out of class work and also, again, the feedback you will get from what will be very active peer observation will I believe prove very fruitful’ (Oradini, 2019), while Julie agreed it was a ‘great way of integrating the online activity with the face to face activity’ (Ann, 2019). After reading my peer feedback on the online forum, I felt very confident about my flipped learning activity and the way it was integrated with other aspects of the course. Mark’s comments summed this up nicely as he pointed out that ‘the podcast element is not just informative but is also aiming to inspire students in the next step…their research journey’ (Laville, 2019).
Before piloting my flipped learning activity with my students, in this case, a group of colleagues from Lincoln who were happy to act as my students, I considered what my peers had said about their own activities and how they planned to integrate them. I was pleased to see that Carlos was also looking to pilot with colleagues, given he is also not currently teaching, and I offered some advice in this regard while also pointing out that ‘by making these resources available for the students to access throughout the rest of their learning activities, you also embed your flipped approach into the whole module’ (Atkinson-Foster, 2019a). I really liked Carlos’ approach to the flipped activity and it directly informed the way in which I conducted the discussion element in my face-to-face session to try and reinforce the fact that the podcasts and any associated learning would be available to refer back to throughout the rest of the module. Similarly, I was pleased to see that Rebecca was looking to re-work an element of her micro-teach session in the same way I was, and I pointed out that ‘this will provide lots of opportunities to evaluate the change and how successful it might have been’ (Atkinson-Foster, 2019b).
It was useful to listen to Andy Peisley talk about his examples of integrating flipped learning activities. The idea that the ‘resources were able to be re-used several times’ (Peisley, 2019) links to what Carlos and others said about making their podcasts available throughout the rest of the module, but also lends itself to the idea that the podcasts could, if general enough, be used in other modules where appropriate. This would give a much greater scope to the flipped learning activity. Andy also points out in the resources for this week that in activity 1b, where the flipped learning activity was introduced to solve a problem and extend the students learning, the flipped element was far more successful than in 1a where an in-class element that was working was simply replaced with a flipped activity lacking in context or integration. In the case of 1a, the flipped activity failed because it wasn’t scaffolded into the rest of the module and in essence didn’t do anything different to the previous in-class activity.
Overall, Week 5 of the EDU720 module has acted as a useful opportunity to consider how the flipped learning activities we plan to pilot are integrated with the rest of the learning activities and the wider course. There has also been a focus on delivering the flipped learning activity and the associated face-to-face session and I look forward to reflecting on this more deeply in the first assessment task. Thinking about the wider implications of planning and integrating a flipped learning activity, I do think it has been a useful experience and one which I will take forward as an activity I can embed in various different kinds of modules and programmes as it really is very versatile and can be adapted to fit the audience and topic.
Atkinson-Foster, B. (2019a) Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Posted 28th February 2019. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479 (Accessed: 13 March 2019).
Atkinson-Foster, B. (2019b) Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Posted 28th February 2019. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479 (Accessed: 13 March 2019).
Aaron Sams – Flipped Classroom: The Next Step (2015). USA.
Laville, M. (2019) Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479 (Accessed: 13 March 2019).
Oradini, F. (2019) Topic: Week 5: Forum – Integrating Activities in Your Flipped Classroom Designs. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/discussion_topics/8479?module_item_id=19544 (Accessed: 1 March 2019).
Peisley, A. (2019) ‘Case Study Example 1 of a Flipped Classroom’. Falmouth: Falmouth University. Available at: https://flex.falmouth.ac.uk/courses/344/pages/week-5-integration-in-blended-learning?module_item_id=19545.