After watching Salman Khan’s video on Ted.com:
I really got a new perspective on learning and the importance of the “interactive” role of a teacher.
Is this really the most productive role of a teacher in a class?
Is this the most productive time for a teacher?
I would imagine most people would say something like the images below are more appropriate uses of a teacher’s time.
One of the points that Salman Khan makes in the video I agree with wholeheartedly. The most important part of a teacher’s time is working with a student personally and finding more individualized ways to teach each child. Instead, in the classic model, a teacher lectures in front of a classroom for a period of time. In the end a lecture type approach may be the only means by which a teacher can communicate the information to their students. Though in the flipped classroom model students arrive ready to fill the holes they have left by the questions about that particular lesson or subject matter. Practice makes perfect but imperfect practice creates bad habits. The idea of creating videos that explain and demonstrate a concept is so valuable because a student can not only self-pace themselves but also have them to refer to at any time they need a refresher.
Having these video’s also makes parent home involvement that much easier. When the parent can see exactly how the teacher is teaching a concept it is far easier to assist a child. Instead, presently a child goes home to tell a parent what they are studying but can’t grasp the concept well enough to explain it to them in the first place.
The value in real useful data on each student’s activities when they return home to practice is extremely beneficial to the teacher. The strategy of separating students into groups based on their understanding of a concept is used quite often, but to be able to break that down even further by what questions they have the most trouble with and so on make individualized teaching far more effective.
When we optimize the process of initially teaching a concept, and ultimately assessing the understanding of those concepts, we are then left with far more time in the middle of that process which should be dedicated to individualized learning for each student with the teacher.