Getting Right On Track

The first week of school is over and students are beginning to ‘flip’ their learning. All my students have homework due their first lesson next week. They will be watching two or three videos and work on the exercise set at the end of each video. They also have to submit their answers online by clicking “Online Self-Check”s so as to find out whether their answers are correct. It is also a great tool for me, too; I will be able to monitor students’ progress online.

FL on air

Having watched the videos, students are ready to work on harder problems

My Year 8 class already had a homework during last week which was due last Thursday. Among 16 students, only 3 were unable to meet the deadline. One of them said he didn’t know about the deadline, hence he did not work on the videos at all. The other two said they watched the videos, however they didn’t know they had to submit their answers to Online Self-Check. Others were ready for the class activity, which was a pair-work involving discussion and teamwork.

I was ready for such a situation; before the class started, I got a laptop that was a spare in the library and set it. When I learned about these three students, I asked them to complete their work one by one using the laptop, which they did. They managed to catch up with their peers before the main activity was complete, hence they were able to attend. However, in case they could not, they had to come in the last 20 minutes of the lunch break to complete the activity. This is not a reprimand; they have to catch up with their friends.

This is a lot of work, I should admit. I have to create an average of four videos per class per week, which makes a total around 12 to 15. I also have to prepare the Online Self-Checks, which include solving the exercise sets at the end of each video and prepare an answer key with almost all possible alternatives of entries per question. On top of that, I have to prepare hands-on, higher order class activities. OK, I won’t be using activities in every lesson; there will be problem solving sessions, too. However, I want to introduce as much higher-order-thinking-required sort of activities as possible so as to make the most of FL. Whenever I feel exhausted and think I can do no more, I will remember; next year will be better, as I will be focusing more on group space, namely, class, than the videos and self-checks. After all, it is all about improvement and progress.

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