Flipping the Classroom! Posted June 5, 2014 by Contributor

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One of the hottest trends in teaching has come to Hatboro-Horsham High School and Joel Evans’ statistics and calculus students are Flipping the classroombenefiting.  Thanks to an Innovative Learning Grant by the Hatboro-Horsham Educational Foundation (HHEF), Evans was able to purchase all the equipment needed to set up a flipping studio.  The equipment – video camera with carrying bag, tripod, wireless microphone and webcam – is used to create video lessons.

This is how it works.  Videoed lessons are posted for students to watch at home, to understand the concepts being taught.  When they come to class, students do the “homework” or math problems while the teacher looks on.  This promotes much more one to one direct interaction with the students and clearer insight as to whether the lesson is understood or more work is needed to master concepts. Kids aren’t sitting through long lectures and teachers are more fully engaged.  “The only way to get better in math is practicing the process, particularly for statistics.  By not spending 45 minutes listening to me lecture, my students have time to do practice problems and ask questions,” says Evans.

Evans has been a teacher at HHHS for 15 years, currently teaching AP Statistics and Honors Calculus.  As the material is quite intense, he laughed that sometimes he could see the traditional style of lecturing leading to kids “with their eyes glazing over.”  Flipped teaching has increased the energy level for all participants.

Is it successful?  While there aren’t any objective assessments, anecdotally, the first year he flipped the class, Evans AP Stats class had an 89% pass rate; Year 2 the pass rate was 100%.

“The kids are really into it.  In addition, I’ve been able to loan the equipment to other teachers so they can offer the flipped style classroom learning, as well,” says Evans.  In addition to filming lessons, Evans was able to video the Statistics Fair and post it on his website for everyone to see.

What’s next?  Evans has ideas for another HHEF grant.  He says, “Trying new techniques keeps things more interesting for me and challenging for the kids.”

Mr. Evans has provided three examples of his video lessons:

  1. AP Statistics:  “Bias”
  2. AP Statistics:  “Experimental Design”
  3. Calculus:  “Implicit Differentiation”