To Flip or not to Flip, is that really the Flippin’ Question?

The Flipped Classroom: Pro and Con

As far as I can see classrooms today, it is obvious something has to change.  When it comes to that change it starts and ends with the leader of that classroom, the teacher.

I have seen read various pro’s and con’s to using or not using a flipped classroom approach.  Honestly, the issue in my opinion is not to flip or not to flip, it’s to change or not to change.  So many teachers go into the profession to inspire children and spark an interest to learn in them.  Unfortunately, teaching has changed leaps and bounds from that way that any future teacher has been taught.

So many students look up to a teacher and want to be like them or do the same thing.  When that student does become the teacher, simply mimicking that teacher they had is not good enough to becoming an excellent teacher.  By the time any individual has gone from student to teacher, it will undoubtedly have been nearly 20 years since they were the student.  When it comes to education, history shows us that huge changes occur in even just 5-10 year spans let alone 20 years.

The idea of the flipped classroom is not about the simple concept of a flipped classroom, but it becomes more changing as a teacher from what we grew up with as students.  As long as a teacher makes the effort to adapt their teaching, to their students any change is positive.  Many doubters of the flipped classroom claim it makes teaching automated.  Of course, if the teacher simply puts a video up that is doing their job, it has been automated.  I have had plenty of classes where a teacher or professor decides to show the class a film or video clip, is that a flipped classroom?  I’ve had teachers who do nothing be lecture and drone on about a subject in a monotone voice, and a script of information that they have no doubt used for years upon years, is that automated thus being flipped?

I believe that changing classroom structures to solely being flipped or totally not flipped is not beneficial for students.  What benefits students is any display of passion and authentic excitement from a teacher in any means that teacher chooses to display it.  My fondest memories of particular teachers was not the method on which they chose to teach, but how much passion and love for a subject that came out of their creativity in demonstrating the information.

So do we flip or not?  Well, I think it gets answered by the best pragmatic response… It all depends.