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Are you exhausted at the end of the day?

Do you feel like you can never do anything fun with your students (or your child if you are homeschooling)?

Do you want to empower your student/child?

A flipped classroom may be what you are looking for.

Mandy Rice talks about the benefits of a flipped classroom in this podcast.

 

Audio Transcription:

Vaish:

Welcome back to functional nutrition and learning for kids. I’m your host, Dr. Vaishnavi. Saturday, the functional nutrition practitioner, designs educator. We had an unplanned rate for a week last week if you’re wondering what happened. And as we get back together, I’m sure you and I both find ourselves deeply homeschooling, and whether our children are neurotypical or not. I probably shouldn’t say that I hope with all my heart that kids with down syndrome or autism are also getting the education they deserve in these times. Now, in this process, if you were exhausted teaching your child at the end of the day or just not having fun.

Today’s guest Mandy rice says that this is where a flipped classroom can help. Even though she’s talking from the framework of school, I think there is a huge room for this in homeschooling kids with disabilities as well. Today’s guest is Mandy rice. Mandy is taught high school social studies for 10 years just outside of Cincinnati, Ohio, where her passion for teaching turned into a passion for supporting teachers teach on a mission is her company where she focuses on helping teachers build sustainable classrooms so that they can stay there longer. Her primary focus is on helping teachers create a flipped classroom, content coaching and AP psychology and elevating teachers as experts in the field of education. Welcome, Mandy. Thank you for being here.

Mandy:

Thank you so much. I’m glad to be here.

Vaish:

Can you start off by telling us what a flipped classroom is?

Mandy:

Yeah, definitely. It’s, um, it seems kind of, like trendy. But it’s actually been around for I’d say between 10 and 15 years, right, closer to 15 years. The idea of a flipped classroom is that what is traditionally done inside of the classroom, which is direct instruction, mostly from the teacher, what a lot of people call lecturing or notes is now done outside of the classroom as homework, or in a different fashion other than just the teacher standing up the front of the room. And then what is traditionally done as homework, which, if you’re talking, you know, educational gurus, we talk about Bloom’s taxonomy, right.

The homework assignments are more practice and tend to be a little more collaborative, even. So they’re higher up Bloom’s a little bit trickier than just sitting and absorbing information. So that’s traditionally done in homework, but in the flipped classroom, that harder piece is now done in the classroom, with the teacher and with their peers. So that they’re, it’s natural, and a more authentic piece of collaboration for students, and allows their guide their teacher to be right there with them in the harder parts of their of the learning process. So that’s the very, like, most basic understanding.

Vaish:

Got it Thank you. And does that generally mean that the lecture partner whatever is supposed to be done outside the classroom? Is that usually through a video recording? Or is that something that the students are expected to do by themselves? And this has happened before the part where the problem solving as such as done in class?

Mandy:

Yeah, so what I tell a lot of teachers and a lot of my clients is that no two flipped classrooms should ever look the same. And I think there’s a lot of power in that for teachers. So if we were to call a flipped classroom, a traditional flipped classroom, which is kind of an oxymoron.

A traditional flipped classroom or the most, like, the foundational definition would be that students are watching a video, mostly recorded by their teachers. That’s what I advocate is that the teachers make the video and I help them, I walk them through how to best do that without taking up a ton of time. But most in a traditional flipped classroom, yes, they would watch it outside of class as homework before they then come into class to use that knowledge. Now, when I first start working with teachers, it’s to help them decide what kind of flip would be best for them, and their students and their specific situation and their students, very individual needs. And so there are really three types of flips. There’s the traditional flip, where students are watching the lecture the notes outside of class as homework, there is the in-class flip. Now, this one is really common and more commonly called blended learning. So the teacher still records a video, it’s probably going to be a little shorter between five and 10 minutes long. And students actually watch that in class. I see. And I’ve actually done that in my American history class, where homework was just not it just wasn’t an option for my students given their different needs and homework.

It just wasn’t an option. And so I did an in-class flip. And most of the time that looks like at the beginning of the bell, maybe twice a week, they watched no longer than a 10-minute video of me, essentially lecturing over the notes, they were taking notes, and then we use that information after everyone was done. And the beautiful part of that was, it could be for the most part student-paced. So if a student needed to take 30 minutes to watch a 10-minute video, they could totally do that. If a student took 12 minutes to watch a 10-minute video, which is kind of fast. But they could do that if that’s where they were, that was, that was fine. And so where I come in, is helping teachers to build the best kind of flip for their students and for them that they can maintain. And then what that looks like inside of the classroom, got it, there are some misconceptions around flipping that, you just have to make the videos and then you’re done.

I say that that’s that you’re actually setting yourself up to do a lot of work for a lot of failures. And that’s, that’s not what you want to do, right? Especially teachers, like you don’t want to spend all that time. So I say that there’s, there’s some prework to be done. And then after you have your videos, there’s work on what class looks like. And there’s a lot of power there in that open class time and what you can do with students, and it really comes down to the ability to talk to every one of your students every single day. Not many teachers are able to do that. But then also building those relationships with students. That’s, that’s absolutely huge.

Vaish:

Absolutely. And it was there a third type of classroom as well? Did you say three types or two types? I think I said three types.

But um, third one is that it will come to you. Don’t worry about it. I did have another question. Isn’t that? Why? Why are we talking about a flipped classroom in the first place? So why should I mean, we’ve been doing traditional learning, and you said it started about 15 years ago. So I guess you could say my question was two-prong to that.

Why was there a need for it to start? And why should we still be doing that? And are people doing it?

Mandy:

Yeah, that’s a great question. So in my second year of teaching, which was 10 or so years ago, I very much felt a need for a few things. And those few things that I felt a need for back then I continue to hear from teachers still. And a few of those are, I’m exhausted at the end of the day because I have so much content to get through, and not enough time to get through it. This then also means I can never do anything fun or engaging or interesting with my students.

Like no one went to college, well, maybe not no one. But most people, right, like 90% of teachers did not go to college, to lecture all day, right? Like their ideal classroom was not them standing up the front talking all day, every day. And it’s also not very sustainable. But then also, and this one’s probably the biggest of the three that I just mentioned, is increasing student accountability in a way that empowers them. So oftentimes, when we say student accountability, it’s, you know, the teacher standing over the student saying you need to do this, and you need to get better at this and did it and it’s very one direct, like, directive as a student, right? Right, during accountability to me, and the way that I work with my teachers and flipping their classrooms is that it’s empowering, it’s empowering your students to be able to and it is my students about this, tell your teacher to shut up for a second while you pause them.

Right. Like there’s a lot of beauty in and that’s differentiation at its finest, right? Like, being able to pause your teacher so that you can digest the information and take it in at your pace. I mean, and that’s just entry-level of your classroom. That’s, and it’s not the teacher building 14 different kinds of lessons. And what can really be the devil in the detail of differentiation, right? And that it’s, that’s, that’s sustainable, that gives a lot of power to the student over the bottom of Bloom’s Taxonomy and how they are learning at their pace.

Vaish:

I really like that, that idea of giving the power back to the student and, as opposed to being directed to do something one thing that it does build self-motivation. It builds certain ownership of the work that you’re doing, right. So, um, does. I have a couple of questions at the branch From this, at any rate, I can see that even when you are talking to a student in a unique classroom in a non flipped classroom, there’s going to be a few students that you reach really well. And these are the students that. the process that particular skill of elimination very well, or super self-motivated or have the right structure and qualities. When does this not work? Like? Does it not work for certain kinds of students?

Mandy:

That’s a good question. And it’s one that, to be honest with you. I’m not the greatest at answering this question. And here’s why. Because every kid’s different.

Every teacher is different. And there is never a silver bullet in education. That’s true. So when I talk about the flipped classroom, I don’t believe that it’s going to work for everyone, because I don’t know everyone. You know, and I don’t know, everyone’s very unique situations, I will say that I do believe with proper steps, and with the intention on the teachers part in their planning, and the systematic implementation of their flipped classroom, that it can work if they want it to. And it’s just a matter of getting the foundations of flipping down and working in who you are, as a teacher, working in who your students are and where their needs are. And that and really, it comes down to remembering that no foot no two flipped classrooms are ever going to look the same.

Vaish:

And I think that it also brings a little bit more accountability to the teacher to customize their classroom accordingly, depending on what they need, right? Yes.

Working when you were saying when you’re describing a flipped classroom, in my mind, I have this image of a of a higher level class, like an AP Chem class or an AP psychology class, does this work in middle school in elementary school? Or is it primarily High School concept?

Mandy:

So I am in High School, right? Like I teach. That’s where I teach. And so I’ve only personally ever flipped in a high school. But I have flipped at multiple levels. So AP psychology, but then also just regular college prep American history. And I have colleagues in the middle school level who have flipped their classrooms as well. And I know not that this makes me an expert in elementary education. But I have a six-year-old who’s in kindergarten now.

I can see ways that video of the teacher could work in his classroom, even at that low level of kindergarten, doesn’t look the same as my 15 or 20-minute lecture videos with AP psychology? Of course not. But it’s still very much is a tool in your toolbox that allows you to reach more students. And you kind of touched on this earlier, but I wanted to bring it up here is that something that I call the 99% rule of the flipped classroom, and it’s not really a rule, so maybe I should rethink a way to name it. But in the traditional classroom, you have so many factors, with so many things, right? Like there’s and you don’t have to convince teachers or parents that there are so many factors happening in any given classroom.

Let’s just take absenteeism for one, right, and that a student could be absent for a really long time for any given reasons, or just really sporadically, whether that’s health issues, or at the high school level, a lot of times it’s apathy, right. And in the traditional classroom, when your students are absent, and they come back, if they ask, Hey, what we do, and you say, we took some notes, they’re likely to just grab some from somebody else at their table or around them and just copy them. And what I told my students is, you’re working on your ABCs, right? If you’re just copying, you’re not thinking about that information whatsoever. Right. Whereas in the flipped classroom, because of the way that we structure it, because of the way it’s implemented. 99% of my students will receive 99% of the content from me, not from their next-door neighbor who took good notes on Monday when they were absent, and they just copied it down, not just me trying to hurry and say, Well, here’s what it is.

You got to get it fast because we got to move on. No, they’re still going to get it even though they were absent. Right. And they’re going to get it from me. And that totally changed my classroom. I’ve seen it change. So many of the teachers that I’ve worked with, change their classrooms, you see it not only in scores, but you see it again going back to that student accountability and empowering students may see allow like, I’m still Part of this class, even though I might look work a little slower, or I’m still part of this class, even though I had, you know, doctor’s appointments all last week, or, you know, March was just a really bad month for me health-wise. And so that just because

Vaish:

I can see that expanding to the realm of inclusion, and as I said, You know, I, I work a lot with kids with disabilities, and I’m also really interested in optimizing learning outcomes for them. So one of sometimes when parents struggle with getting their kids included in a classroom, you can see that, that whatever you said, a flipped version of a classroom might be great, because they could then receive the knowledge in whatever circumstances work best for them, and then have either a modified way of working the problems in class more what, again, a modified or an accommodated way.

I can see that this would be like a fantastic fit in, in across from where you’re trying to, not trying to, hopefully, but where you’re including children with different abilities.

Mandy:

Yes, and there are so many tools out there where you can take the video, and I mean, just on YouTube, we can have closed captioning or like the captions if you want, but there are other tools like play posit or puzzle, where you can have the video stop and ask questions. And those questions can be, you can take the same exact video, and make they’re called bulbs, or bubbles and play posit or puzzle. And you can make three different ones or two different ones in this tool, and assign, you know, put different levels of questioning and each of the videos and assign those to your varying levels of students. So and you only lectured once, you know, you only made the video once and yet you can differentiate it with the plethora of tools that are out there. That’s fantastic.

There’s a lot of possibilities there are classrooms.

Vaish:

So now that there’s this ideology, if or if that’s what it is, or this method is available and has been available for years, and you have experts like you teaching in our schools open to it is, is everybody implementing it? Is there any resistance that you see, and this is worse, we’re still in the realm of neurotypical classrooms, right? Because if, unfortunately, the cases that if there’s resistance in the neurotypical arena, there’s going to be more resistance and in teaching kids with disabilities, but how what do you see?

Mandy:

So the main resistance that I see is more, I wouldn’t say that schools are necessarily against it, because most of the time I’m working with teachers, and oftentimes, it’s an individual choice that they make, to flip their classroom in the varying degrees that they might decide to do so. But the biggest resistance is it really, I don’t want to say it comes down to time, but it does. And here’s why. Most of the time, a teacher is not guaranteed that they are going to be teaching the same course next year.

Right? So like, I’m certified in social studies, which means I can teach seven different subjects, sociology, psychology, history, US history, World History, economics, all the things right. And so I could teach a completely different schedule next year, which means that I just spent all that time flipping and now I’m going to teach something else.

Vaish:

And when you say you spend that time flipping what you’re really spending time is investing in making those videos and just structuring the classroom. Yeah, it’s but it’s mostly the time investment isn’t making the videos, right?

Mandy:

Yes, yes. Yeah, I should have clarified that. Yes, it is. So there is a bit, of work upfront. And just like in a well-planned lesson, right, there’s planning upfront that then you’re able to just let it flow later, right. Like, it’s, that’s the same in the flipped classroom. But that’s probably the biggest resistance is that you know, there’s no guarantee that this course is going to be mine for the long haul. And so and, you know, that’s a really legitimate concern.

What I can see though, is in the non-typical classroom, a lot of those teachers stay put for some time and props to them, right, like a huge shout out to teachers who have those abilities and can stay there for a while. But then also, there are two sides of the coin there, right, and that you’re making these videos at varying levels for different students. So I think once you get through the learning curve of what flipping is, and making videos, it’s gonna be like a well-oiled machine. And it’s also taking it in steps, right, like okay, I think I’m able to flip this much or this unit or for this level this year, and Then I’ll have that next year. So then next year, I can focus on this level. Okay, this unit, if that’s more sustainable for teachers,

Vaish:

okay, do you? Do you see better results from students when using the flipped classroom method?

Mandy:

Yes. So I don’t have the numbers off the top of my head, but in some presentation somewhere I totally do. The numbers and the difference in scores. Were so awesome, and, and sustainable too. So, and I actually was just reading a few.

A few.I’m trying to think of the word sorry, I don’t wanna say testimonials, because that sounds wonky. I’m just reading a couple of like, emails and responses from teachers recently. Success Stories kind of thing. Yeah, yeah. So a teacher shared that five years ago, or maybe it was three years ago, her average score on tests was a 70%. And in the last two years, when she started flipping, it was it’s an average of 77%.

Nice. And so, you know, some might look at that and say, Oh, no, you’re still in the 70s. Is not that great? No, no, in the realm of education, that is substantial, right to have that average increase that much, is very substantial.

Vaish:

And anytime you’re reaching, I mean, like, 7% more students, that isn’t trivial. Right? So that’s a huge thing. Yeah. So Maggie, can you tell us more about, your organization? So that’s taught on a mission is your company? Can you tell us more about that?

Mandy:

Yeah, definitely. So it actually has been kind of in the works for longer than I was even aware. And that was because of my flipped classroom, I put all of my videos on YouTube.

I had a flow of teachers and students, but teachers to asking me all kinds of content-specific questions, but also about flipping. And so is January of 2018, is when I actually started officially the business. But then this year, have really been investing more into it and treating it as such as a business, right. And so just a couple of things that we do, I teach on a mission, all coming back to the goal or the mission of making teaching more sustainable so that teachers can stay in the classroom longer. And the way that I’ve been doing that, in the last year or two is, through an online course for teachers called flipped classroom formula, where I work with them on flipping their classrooms from step one to step, whatever it is, right A to Z, I’m working with them step by step. And I really built that to be less philosophical, right, a lot of professional development for teachers is very much, here’s why you should be doing these things. And I thought to myself, well, yeah, that’s great. I understand the why I want the how. And so that’s, that was really my vision with that course. And it’s been awesome.

I’ve had almost 20 teachers go through it so far. And we’ll be launching that again in May. And if anyone is interested in learning more about that they can go to teach on a mission comm slash starter kit. And that will give them a PDF, I forget how many pages it’s like a small ebook, let’s say, but essentially just walks them through, here’s what starting your flipped classroom will look like. And then other aspects of the business include content coaching, so I have a membership of about 50 ap psychology teachers that I work with on a month-to-month basis, just providing them resources and coaching. Okay, yeah, so that’s really the gist of it. It’s all about elevating teachers as the experts in education

Vaish:

and that is fantastic to hear. Thank you, Mandy. So I’m sure that teachers can use all the tools they can get us but I’m I know that teaching high school is nothing short of challenging regardless of

Mandy:

all levels are for very different reasons.

Vaish:

Well, thank you for being here. Mandy was great to meet you. I’ve got a lot of new ideas blowing in my head above flipped classrooms for children with disabilities. So functional nutrition and learning for kids. I am your host Vaish and the music was composed by Maitri. See you next week. Bye.