Monthly Archives: August 2015
Flipped Classroom – Teaching the World
Up until this point, I have been creating my videos, and posting them to (i) the “Coppell IB Math” Google Site, and (ii) the iTunes U courses I created for Math Higher Level 2, Math Standard Level 2, and Math Studies. I’ve also been posting the videos on YouTube, just to give my students different options for locating the videos. And I was happy as long as my students were able to access the videos.
Little did I know that, over time, it wasn’t just my students that were subscribing to my iTunes U courses. While I have only taught about 300 Higher Level 2 and Standard Level 2 students, I have noticed that over 1700 people have subscribed to my HL2/SL2 iTunes U course! Similarly, I have taught a total of 10 Math Studies students, but more than 800 students have subscribed to my Math Studies iTunes U course!
Then I started looking at my YouTube videos. By the way, YouTube allows you to see who has been watching your videos, and can give you these statistics in as many ways as you can imagine. Not knowing this until recently, I decided to investigate. First of all I have 198 subscribers, but I only recognize 17 of them as students I have taught in my class. Then I went to see how many views … over 40,000 views!! This raised some questions, like: Which video do they watch the most? Where are the viewers from?
Apparently, my 5 most watched videos, as of August 30, 2015, are:
- 10,515 views – Derivatives of arcsin(x), arccos(x), arctan(x)
- 8,539 views – Fermat’s Little Theorem
- 5,064 views – Linear Congruences
- 1,906 views – The Chinese Remainder Theorem
- 849 views – Linear Diophantine Equations
And the viewers come from countries all over the world. Here are the top 10:
- 16,206 views – United States
- 3,462 views – India
- 2,926 views – United Kingdom
- 2,846 views – Canada
- 1,452 views – Philippines
- 876 views – Australia
- 778 views – Sweden
- 680 views – South Africa
- 509 views – Malaysia
- 481 views – Norway
For a complete chart of all countries with more than 200 views, click this link: YouTubeStats
I never dreamed that when I would start the Flipped Classroom that my silly little videos would help teach students across the world. And the YouTube watchers (again, not my students) are also very generous with their compliments too!
- “Thank you! I am teaching myself number theory with the goal of making it part of a high school discrete math course that I’d like to teach. This is most helpful and explained quite well. I will definitely check out your other material.” – J.M.
- “I will have a paper 3 IB exam tomorrow, thank you so much for your videos! They are all really helpful! :)” – T.V.
- “Thank you Ian! Finally i got this!” – L.L.
- “wow.. you are saving my life..your explanation is so clear and easy to follow..thank you very much..” – K.K.
- “Hey Ian, I really appreciate this video. You do a great job with these videos. In 10 minutes you clarified something I’ve been wrestling for a week since my “professor” explained it in class. Molte Grazie!” – A.G.
One YouTube viewer from Lapu-Lapu City in the Philippines liked my video on Fermat’s Little Theorem and asked if I would explain Wilson’s Theorem. I told her that it wasn’t part of my curriculum, but afterward, I became curious as to what Wilson’s Theorem was. So I researched it, found a proof that I could follow, and made a video for her. It can be found here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gk2yjoICL68
Flipped Classroom – Year 4
I knew I wouldn’t regret Flipping my Classroom, and this year is going to prove it!
Let me give you some background: I teach IB Math in Coppell, and our program is still growing, which means I don’t yet teach full classes of 30 kids all taking the same level of IB Math. Instead, I have classes of 10 or 15, sometimes fewer, and it is challenging for school counselors to schedule all of those students, because they are also interested in Band or Athletics, or other extra-curricular activities that are usually only offered during specific periods of the day.
So students have limited choices as to when they can take the desired IB Math class, and equally limited choices as to when they can take their extra-curricular class. As a result, some students are left to choose one or the other. I don’t like this; I would hate for students to make such a choice. This goes against my belief in the purpose of high school, i.e., an opportunity to experience all avenues of education in order to wisely determine where they will go afterward.
And that’s the reason I’m glad I am flipping! Weeks ago, I told the counselor that I am willing to teach any IB math student during any of my available IB math periods. This means I have Higher Level students co-seated with Standard Level students, and I have Standard Level students co-seated with Math Studies students. For a non-flipping teacher, this would be a nightmare! But since I already have all of the videos and post-video quizzes made, my time during class is spent helping each student individually, and students are shown neither favoritism nor neglect.
I’m very excited about this year, because I think it speaks volumes as to what can be accomplished when flipping is implemented correctly. I don’t have to limit myself to one math course per period. With proper organization, I think this year is going to be an exciting challenge!
I still plan to keep those practices that have worked well for me in the past – the collaborative room layout, the Raw Hundo Club, an overview day at the beginning of each unit, a high-level discussion question at the beginning of class, and worksheets that lead to the punchline of a witty math joke. I still plan on using a flexible assessment, but I am thinking of making it mandatory at least twice per semester. This means that twice each semester, instead of taking the unit test, the student must create something of original design that demonstrates a high level of knowledge of the entire unit. The final product and the level of knowledge demonstrated is decided by the student based on a rubric that I provide in advance.
Again, I am very excited about this, my fourth year Flipping my Classroom. I will be sure to share details about my progress throughout the year.
So I encourage all of you who have started flipping, or are skeptical about flipping: There are so many benefits to flipping that occur in your own classroom, with your own students. But you never know who in the world (literally) you will be teaching by publicly sharing your knowledge with others.