|Jon Bergmann and a "virtual photo bomb" by Aaron Sams|
I was so excited! I have long looked up to Bergmann and Sams, and I followed their models when I flipped my own classroom. It was such a rush to get to meet them! I also got to meet one of my #flipclass Twitter friends (and fellow Bama fan), and that was also pretty exciting.
I'm in my second year of flipping my classroom, but I needed a good look at the basics again (still). I needed to see what other teachers are doing in their classrooms. I got some ideas about some things to try with Explain Everything, the app I use to make videos. I was given some tips about making videos that are easier/more fun for students to watch. I got to talk with other middle school math teachers, some "checking out" the flipped classroom and some who were already flipping; I identify with both.
Most of all, though, I was encouraged that maybe, just maybe, I'm doing OK with my flipped classroom and NOT doing everything the wrong way.
When it comes to the amount of practice my students do, the focus on content, how teacher-centered or student-centered my classroom is, how much discussion I have with the whole class, I was right in line with what Jon and Aaron suggest and with stories they shared from other successfully flipped math classes.
I got a glimpse of where my little flipped classroom can go - flipped mastery, SBG, PBL - and I can see me moving in those directions eventually, but I was happy to see that what I am currently doing is just fine and beneficial for my students.
I've had a few fleeting thoughts this year of, "This is too hard. Maybe I need to go back to my 'old' classroom" (YUCK!). I've felt pressure from people I don't even personally know that perhaps flipped learning is not the way to go in a classroom. But I left Atlanta refocused and re-energized and convinced that I am still on the right track, both for myself and my students.