Month 10 LMO Entry

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Month 10 Learning management systems and organization

Is there a connection between the data produced from your cycles and the research reported in your literature review?

The data that I collected in my Action Research project supported the research in my literature review in some aspects, but not in others.

I was encouraged to find that implementation of the flipped classroom effectively worked to “level the playing field” in my Physics class; after working in the flipped classroom, my more advanced students reported that Physics was more challenging, and my weaker students reported that Physics was less difficult. This finding is aligned with the conclusions of Baker (as cited in Strayer, 2007, p. 61) and Lage, Platt, and Treglia (2000).

Also in accordance with the literature review was the finding that students spent more time working collaboratively within the framework of a flipped classroom than they had pre-implementation. Baker (as cited in Strayer, 2007, p. 61) and Toppo (2011) noted similar trends in the flipped classrooms that they studied.

Students working in the flipped classroom reported feeling somewhat less engaged during class time, and less motivated to complete their homework assignments. These rather surprising findings challenge the effectiveness of the flipped classroom model, and they contradict the findings of Baker (2000) and Lage, Platt and Treglia (2000).

How did your AR project turn out for you? Describe, as a practitioner, how you will use this project to improve your practice.

In spite of performance-based evidence that students showed greater levels of comprehension in the flipped classroom, I was discouraged by my findings indicating that students felt lower levels of motivation to complete homework and engagement in class in this model. Fortunately, though, this result was evident following cycle 1, and so I was able to make beneficial adjustments to my cycle 2 implementation. During cycle 2, I deliberately incorporated more time for class discussion. Each class still began with an online quiz (just as in cycle 1), but during cycle 2, I attempted to follow each quiz with a short (10 to 20 minute) class discussion. Generally, I led a brief review of the last class’s content, offered suggestions based on the quiz results, took questions concerning the video lecture students watched for homework and briefly introduced the new topics for the day. By incorporating this time for me to address the students in class, I effectively implemented a less rigid flipped classroom model.

With the in-class time that the flipped classroom allowed, students were able to spend more time problem-solving collaboratively. Here, you see two students building an egg drop container to review concepts including gravity, momentum, energy and impulse.

The encouraging aspect of my data was that students’ engagement and motivation did show improvement between cycles 1 and 2, suggesting that the “hybrid” approach to flipping the Physics classroom, in which at least some class time each day is devoted to teacher-led discussion, could mitigate students’ negative reaction to the more rigidly enforced flipped model.

My findings following cycle 2 strongly indicate that, in spite of students’ self-reported feelings of motivation and engagement, the flipped classroom model improved their comprehension and performance in Physics. For this reason, I do intend to continue to implement a flipped classroom model, but to a lesser degree than I did during this Action Research project. In my classroom henceforth, I plan to use lecture videos to introduce students to the fundamentals of new topics, but to use in-class lectures or presentations to review more challenging ideas and problems. This adjustment is a response to students’ comments that they sometimes felt “left on their own” to learn more difficult material during the in-class assignments. Although I will go back to using more class time for lecture (as I did pre-implementation), I do not plan to revert entirely to a traditional classroom model; I have seen the value of using class time for students to work on labs and problems collaboratively and with access to their instructor. Thus, I plan to continue to use challenging and engaging in-class assignments to complement lecture videos and limited classroom instruction.

A successful drop!

Is a personal learning environment or an LMO something that could be part of your AR project in the future? Why or why not?

Successful implementation of the flipped classroom depends heavily on the effective use of technology, by both students and instructors. The use of an LMO could be incredibly useful in helping both groups to organize and keep track of their materials. In implementation of my flipped classroom, students had to visit my YouTube page to view lecture videos, use my own website to access in-class assignments and links to outside content, take online quizzes on Quia, and keep track of their own files on their MacBooks. All of these diverse resources could have been better organized in a one-stop LMO. A system such as Schoology or Edmodo would keep students organized and on track as they work through the course material.

Provide feedback to other students’ blogs in the comments field.

Click here for my feedback on Katie Ross’s project as she implements technology to improve the orientation experience for new undergraduates.

Click here for my feedback on Joe Marquez’s project, in which he makes engaging multimedia presentations for his students in science.

Click here for my feedback on Bill Harris’s project, in which he seeks out new and innovative ways to encourage instructors to implement technology in their classrooms.

  1. Kim,
    It is great to hear that the use of your flipped classroom led to higher levels of comprehension. It was very interesting to hear that students felt that their levels of motivation had declined. I have been very interested in your AR project since there is much talk about the “flipped” model and many districts seem to be pushing towards it. I was able to talk about this model to my fellow teachers at a recent PD day and most day never heard of it. I offered your AR project as an example and had them come up with even the simplest ways that we could utilize the model in our special school.
    Thanks for sharing over the past 10 months!

  2. Hello Kim,
    Excellent idea on flipping your classroom. I’m looking forward doing the same one day with my class. I’m looking forward seeing your end results so that I can put the same ideas to work in my class. We all know that every year our students are different and they learn in many different styles. This year your class might be a little discourage about the whole concept, but who knows, maybe next year right from the beginning your new class will find it the total opposite. I’ve used Edmodo in my class and it has helped in keeping everything in one place instead of several like the ones you listed. If I may share a suggestion, have you thought about asking the kids to record teaching a lesson or two? Maybe that could help motivate others to watch since is one of their peers. Just an idea. Keep up the good work! Your project sounds very interesting and I know personally it will help me to see what adjustments I should consider before starting my own flip. Thanks.

  3. Kim, I was very tempted to try a flipped classroom model in my class for one of my cycles, but being that I am teaching 8th grade science I truly believe that this could not be done. I find it very difficult to get my students involved outside of my classroom unless I put the term “extra credit” in front of it. I do like your hybrid model where students who need the in class teachings can get it, and those who benefit from a more traditional flipped classroom can do so. It looks like you have had a great time working with this model in class was a success based upon your trial and error implementation methods, great job!

  4. Kim, I really love the flipped classroom concept and it is encouraging to see how your cycles 1 and 2 turned out. It is interesting how the motivation levels dropped and that the students were able to identify that for you. It is good to see that your changes in cycle 2 to better engage your students after cycle 1 are effective. I agree with you about using an LMS/LMO for organizing all the technology tools in one easy to find location. I use my iGoogle page for everything now, and before I started this masters program I had never heard of iGoogle. Thanks for sharing your successful Action Research Project with us. You are inspirational.

  5. Kim, I am glad to see that you found a hybrid of a flipped classroom that worked for your students. I have been very interested in flipping my classroom too and to see your results is encouraging. I think using an LMO to organize all of your resources would be perfect for any further flipping. Keep up the good work.

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