The Flipped Classroom: A Genre of TeachingI am always surprised by the variety of reactions I hear when I tell people I'm a believe in the flipped classroom.
"I want to try that with my students."
"I've been doing something similar for years."
"I'm not a fan."
"I don't like lectures and homework. Isn't that what flipped classrooms are all about?"
It's this last one that tends to stick with me the most. I'm ok with you not being a fan. The flipped classroom isn't for everyone and everybody knows there are no silver bullets in education. What bothers me is when people make assumptions about what the flipped classroom is and what it's not. It also bothers me when people lump all flipped classrooms together.
I have been wondering lately if the way mainstream media has portrayed the flipped classroom incorrectly and the negative connotation that some associate with the flipped classroom should cause us to move away from the term all together.
However, let me explain why I don't think that is necessary. The flipped classroom is simply a genre of teaching. Think of your favorite genre of movies. You can certainly think of good and bad movies that you've seen but that doesn't stop you from watching that genre of movies. From a personal example, I love comic book movies. Batman & Robin was terrible, but it's not going to stop me from watching The Dark Knight Rises or discredit comic book movies all together.
The same should be said for the flipped classroom, or any teaching style for that matter. The flipped classroom is a genre of teaching, and just because there are bad examples out there, doesn't mean you should throw out the genre all together.
For every Brett Ratner (bad) there are J.J. Abrams, Zach Snyder, and Peter Jackson (great). The thing is, if you look around the internet and follow #flipclass on twitter, you are going to find there are some amazing teachers doing amazing things with the flipped classroom. Check out the flipped classroom section of this website for more and I certainly haven't captured them all.
This genre is constantly evolving. Check out Brian Bennett's post about "Redesigning Learning in the Flipped Classroom" for more information about the evolution of the flipped classroom. All I'm asking is please don't instantly discredit what we are doing simply based on perception.