What are we doing to help kids achieve? What is the evidence?
I have to be honest. I am not big on showing videos that take up a whole class period. Most videos I try to make or get off of You Tube and usually I can asign them for homework. I never want them to be more than ten minutes long.
Every now and then there is a great video which explains things far better than I can. One of these for me is "The Fabric of the Cosmos: A Quantum Leap". It is a great NOVA special. Brian Green does a masterful job of explaining quantum mechanics to the non scientist. Still...I do not want to burn an entire class period on this. I got an idea of a way to "flip" this assignment from one of our tech people, Chris Gutermuth. Essentially, I put the link in a google form with a series of questions. The students have a long weekend to work on it. Once they hit "submit" I get their answers with a time stamp. Next comes the grading. This can be done with a few clicks of the mouse with an "add on" called "Flubaroo". If you have multiple choice questions Flubaroo grades and analyzes the assignment in seconds. Dan Meyers wrote a great blog on using google forms and correctly mentioned that Flubaroo is limited in what it grades. Again, it is nice for simple multiple choice quizzes but for more complex questions and answers there are drawbacks.
In a slightly unrelated activity, students finished their "Bunsen Burner" lab faster than anticipated. On a whim, I had them develop safety posters as part of the lab. The posters could be about anything in high school safety and there was a contest. Other classes voted on the best posters and students won prizes. Pretty fun and we had a nice chance to discuss safety. Do you have a nice way to "flip" the classroom or any cool safety ideas? Let me know....