The main idea in a “flipped” classroom is to reverse individual space and group space in the learning process. This means that students first encounter new material on their own and then focus on higher levels of learning like application and analysis in class, where they have the support of the instructor and their peers.
The Flipped Learning Network’s definition captures the conceptual framework underlying a flipped classroom:
Flipped Learning is a pedagogical approach in which direct instruction moves from the group learning space to the individual learning space. The resulting group space is transformed into a dynamic, interactive learning environment where the educator guides students to apply concepts and engage creatively in the subject matter.
While the most common way to implement a flipped classroom is by recording lectures for students to watch in preparation for class, it is unnecessary to use lecture videos. Other options include online simulations or demonstrations, or guided reading. No matter how the students encounter new material, it is crucial to a flipped classroom that they come to class prepared and ready to engage in active learning.
How does this method benefit students?
Flipped classroom methodology is designed to benefit students by maximising the effectiveness of the time they have with their teacher. In other teaching models, students are usually expected to do the majority of their coursework away from the classroom, without the support of their instructor. This can be difficult, especially if the students have struggled to grasp an important concept.
When the flipped classroom model is used, students benefit from their instructor’s input while they are completing exercises and activities. They also benefit from extended debate and discussion with classmates.
Another key benefit is that when learning content is provided online, students can go back and re-watch it as many times as they need.
How does it benefit teachers?
Teachers can benefit from Flipped Classroom too. Providing learning materials for students to engage with outside of class time means that teachers and trainers can be more creative in using lesson time. They have more scope to address misconceptions and complex concepts and can even devote one-on-one time to individual students when necessary.
However, the real benefit to teachers is that students are likely to perform better when they are taught using this model.
What are the advantages of the flipped classroom model for language learning?
Flipped classroom teaching has tremendous implications for online language learning. Studies have shown that e-learning can increase retention rates by up to 60%. Using the flipped classroom model for teaching languages allows training organisations and education centres to get all the benefits of language e-learning while still giving their students the value of classroom teaching.
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