Working with the Internal Flipped Classroom

In middle and high school, I remember saying how much school was while I had play stations from Kindergarten through second grade. Of course, standards changed, and students in all grades work in different types of stations. Elementary teacher, Erin Klein, has found a solution for teachers who want to use the flipped classroom even if their students lack Internet access in her article “How to Set Up Digital Workstations.”

Klein analyzes, summarizes, and describes the technology and strategies she uses in her flipped classroom workstations. Since she does not want to push students’ parents to let their children borrow technology, or some students may not have any access, Klein says she uses “internal flipping” in which students spend fifteen minutes in one workstation before rotating to the next (para. 2). Students watch a fifteen minute lesson made by Klein on educreations with her handwriting on the Whiteboard or work in small groups. According to Klein, she cannot add time to class, but she can divide time between teaching and facilitating small groups with the work stations.

With the internal flipping concept, Klein uses more than one gadget. Students listened to tape recorders that are in “perfect condition” before switching to a different station with Livescribe (para. 10, 11). This tool lets you record a lecture and write important notes. When you tap on the special paper, the Livescribe recorder will jump to that particular point. (The College of Education ITC has Livescribes if you would like to experiment.) It is a great tool for students who struggle with memory barriers. Students may not remember a teacher’s exact words, and the Livescribe helps them to remember through hearing or tapping on a note.

Klein’s article is a significant example for teachers at any level because she still incorporates flipped learning through workstations. This can be done at the middle and high school level while also using different technology, new or old. Students can watch or listen to a lecture on a recorder or iPad. In another station, the teacher facilitates group learning. In a third workstation, a group experiments with a project. Students in the last section work individually, and they can still ask the teacher questions while they work in a small group. This model keeps with the fifteen minute flipped segment and still allows for personalized help from the teacher.

I also like Klein’s model because she incorporates collaboration early in students’ education. She prepares them for a future of peer review. If more classes practice internal flipping, it might strengthen peer review because students learn how to interact with each other using a variety of technology. Klein encourages collaboration even more in her iPad section. She uses a Max HandStand for the iPad. It holds the iPad and it will turn. Students can easily see the screen at the same time without worrying about breaking it because it is secure in the Max HandStand (Klein para. 14). In this instance, students work together sharing content.

Klein’s article is worth reading because she provides a lot of examples, strategies, and content she uses with her elementary classes. Her workstations’ ideas are adaptable for middle, high school, and even college. I would use them in a hybrid or class in which students learn about how to interact with each other and technology. The most significant aspect of Klein’s article is that she provides a potential solution for teachers worried about students’ access to technology or teachers who have limited resources.


Klein, Erin. “How to Set Up Digital Workstations.” Scholastic. Scholastic, 3 Dec. 2013. Web. 27 July 2014.


Work together, Know Yourself, and Keep Sharing

Response to Scott Warnock’s Teaching Writing Online, Chapters 16-18

The theme of storing communication and writing information in one place repeats n Scott Warnock’s book. While he explores the larger world of resources on the Internet in Chapter 18, Warnock ties his points together by stressing whether you store students’ responses, high-stakes assignments, or emails from students; all documents should be in teachers’ folders, subfolders, and a designated spot in the CMS system, or on a blog. The most successful teachers and professors organize their contacts or documents in one place. They give a document a precise name. For example, BeccaBridgesAnnotatedBib.doc. Everything has a label and a place. I believe this primary example connects to chapter 17 because your assessment from students and of yourself will be better if asynchronous communication and assignments have a designated spot.

Courtesy of

Courtesy of Just as Sheldon feels comfort in knowing his spot on the couch is always there, students should feel comfort in knowing exactly where their documents are kept. They know their professors store their emails and communications. In chapter 16, teachers value each other’s communication and resources. They also learn to store them in one place.

Warnock again stresses the importance of storing resources and communication in one place in chapter 16. This becomes an important tool for teams of teachers. I liked chapter 16 because it discusses how the online environment becomes less stressful when teachers work together by collaborating online. They share content or ideas to lessen the strain of work individually. Warnock writes that teams of teachers “can design general course materials tailored for individual sections …” (163). One strength of Google Drive, if teachers do not have a CMS system, is that teachers can create folders within the program. Teachers can upload materials from other places, including old documents, into the designated Google drive folder. Every teacher with whom you share the folder receives comfort in knowing they can access the materials.

Warnock presents an important point at the end of chapter 16, which significantly connects with chapter 17’s focus on assessment. He writes that “less than 30 percent of full-time faculty who teach online receive detailed training about how to do so” (166). If teachers fail to understand their strengths and weaknesses when teaching online, they might not know the best ways to assess themselves. For example, Warnock suggests that some professors use surveys. While they might be useful, surveys fail to give instructors a complete picture of how they’re doing with teaching online.

According to Warnock, teachers should “draw on vast number of texts” from students and those created by teachers (169). By using discussions from message boards or blogs, teachers gain information about students’ understanding of text material. Teachers see whether or not students are engaging with text, writing, and their peers. Teachers consider how students interact online based on the information from blogs, emails, or also synchronous conversations.

In chapter 18, Warnock expands on what tools and books teachers can use to improve their online or hybrid courses. As a teacher, I am interested in using Rita-Marie Conrad and J. Ana Donaldson’s section in Engaging the Online Learner about “using games and simulations” (173). When students engage in familiar content with which they find intriguing, they are more likely to interact with material and classmates. I think it will also build a collaborative environment because students may practice their communication skills with one another.

When Warnock reminds me of the colleges which provide the strengths and weaknesses of “different CMS packages” from chapter 3, I believe these websites are important for teachers because they may evaluate systems their schools use. Interested in research, I like to know which CMS work better than others and why. Which features am I most interested in? That is a question the websites can answer.


Warnock, Scott W. “Virtual Teaching Circles: Leveraging Teacher Time and Effort.” Teaching Writing Online. Urbana: National Council of Teachers of English, 2009. 163-167. Print.

Warnock, Scott W. “Course Assessment: Taking Steps toward Knowing How Well We Are Doing.” Teaching Writing Online. Urbana: National Council of Teachers of English, 2009. 168-171. Print.

Warnock, Scott W. “Resources: A World of Help Out There.” Teaching Writing Online. Urbana: National Council of Teachers of English, 2009. 172-178. Print.

They’re my Words (Sort of): Plagiarism

Response to Scott Warnock’s Chapter 15

Teachers and students have misconceptions about plagiarism.

According to Scott Warnock, some teachers might have taken an aggressive approach towards students who plagiarize, but most of the time, “students often do not know they have plagiarized” (157). How is this possible? It all comes down to discussion. Let students become a part of the exploration and discussion. Ask them how do we credit others’ ideas? What style of writing should we use? What is different about giving an author credit in a news article versus an academic paper? Warnock states that this is an approach teachers should take because it promotes discussion about writing, credit, and research (157). Just as we want to teach students how to review and talk online, we want them to know that giving credit legally and ethically matters.

A comic courtesy of Randy Glasbergen at Warnock writes that the students he worries about plagiarizing is the “lazy student who buys a paper and slaps it up as his or her own …” (157).

To discourage plagiarism, OWCourses are made to encourage an open environment where everyone writes and reads each other’s work. A fresh pair of eyes make a difference. Warnock said when everyone in class participates in creating an honest culture online, it limits or eliminates plagiarism (153). The idea of an open discussion or online class reiterates Warnock’s point about the importance of peer review from earlier chapters. When students spend time looking at each other’s work, they get to know writing styles. They’re not talking face-to-face in class, so they get to know their classmates in a different way. Students may spot something dishonest in another student’s writing, and share it with the professor.

However, I prefer Warnock’s positive reinforcement of peer review, which discourages plagiarism. Students use one another’s post or blog as sources. They learn how to cite their work. Warnock states that even the student who buys a paper must incorporate classmates’ quotes or points with this assignment (155).

Another way to deter students from plagiarizing includes low-stakes assignments. Warnock writes that students often feel more pressure during high-stakes assignments, and are then more likely to cheat (159). Students can learn more, and teachers pick up on their style of writing the more drafts students’ write. Teachers also pay attention to drafts, and learn the students’ writing process. Focus on helping students’ improve.

Teachers also set the example. I am surprised to find out that Warnock said most books he’d read about teaching writing online did not have information about copyright law. It is still an area on which I’m not fully competent, but Warnock is correct in saying that we set the example for our students. “Observant students will notice this hypocrisy, and they may see the double standard as an invitation to break the rules” (Warnock 160). We must know the copyright laws and how we can use materials properly in an online educational forum.

Captain Copyright was an actual comic character created in Canada. While we should not use Wikipedia as a source, the photo is courtesy of Wikipedia.


Warnock, Scott W. “Intellectual Property: Plagiarism, Copyright, and Trust.” Teaching Writing Online. Urbana: National Council of Teachers of English, 2009. 152-162. Print.

Flipped Classrooms: Just a Fad?

Research Post

In my weekly research posts, I have presented different perspectives of the flipped classrooms. It is the subject of my annotated bibliography due at the end of the semester. When investigating an educational tool, questions are asked about if a model works for everyone. In previous weeks, I have presented some problems with flipped classrooms, including students with limited access and flipping for students with disabilities. Research professors, Nancy Lape, Rachel Levy, and Darryl Young; at Harvey Mudd College in California are doing the research over three years. Two articles about their research, beginning with Emily Atteberry’s “Harvey Mudd Professors’ Research suggests ‘flipped classrooms’ Might Not be worth the Hassle” and the follow-up “Can Flipped Classrooms Help Students Learn?,” cover what the professors have found since December 2013.

The professors make it clear they’re not researching flipped classrooms to learn whether they are good or bad. Lape, Levy, and Young – through their three-year $199,544 grant from the National Science Foundation – want to know if there is any advantage and academic improvements in using flipped classrooms (Atteberry para. 5). They want to know if the flipped, or inverted classrooms, are a fad or a tool that will stick around in education.

When discussing flipped classrooms, it is important to know the weaknesses – just like any tool – so you know whether it works for your classroom or find ways to improve the tool. According to Atteberry, the professors have done preliminary research finding students either “love or hated the new model” and some teachers and students thought the flipped classroom added more work (para. 11). These students feel like they have to set aside more time at home to watch videos. Teachers believe they must spend extra time creating content for videos and then come up with enough hands on, in class activities.

What is a flipped classroom?

Do flipped classrooms make a difference for students? Researchers at Harvey Mudd College say that there is not much difference in student achievement between a f2f and flipped classroom model. Photo courtesy of Kathleen McKim.


One significant idea teachers must consider when they create content is whether any of students have IEPs. How can a teacher differentiate instruction for students with different barriers in a flipped classroom? In another article, I mentioned creating captions in videos for students with hearing impairments. For students with short attention spans, teachers repeat important points or keywords in their videos.

However, teachers still have more work to do when it comes to putting together content for online. In a survey, Attebery wrote teachers reported “80 percent of their students have improve attitudes toward flipped classrooms and that standardized test scores were up 67 percent” (para. 18). But, teachers need to know how to work with flipped classrooms. They need to understand not only how to create content, but what to do during class time.

For example, seventh grade math teachers at Banks Trail Middle School attended a conference and learned about flipped classrooms. Their students worked together in groups on problems. The teachers became facilitators in place of lecturers.

However, Lape, Levy, and Young write in their article “Can Flipped Classrooms Help Students Learn?” that a lot of flipped classrooms’ success depends on teachers’ knowledge and how they use it. When I’m learning about flipped classrooms, I have not considered the classroom time beyond group learning. Lape, Levy, and Young found that not every course and its teacher is meant to use flipped classrooms. According to them, an instructor should teach a course that is interactive, and the professor should be a good teacher (para. 8). Courses, such as business in which students are applying knowledge to real life concepts, are beneficial for flipped classrooms. A course such as philosophy is more difficult when it comes to finding hands on activities for class time.

To some extent, Lape, Levy, and Young are right. Some courses present a challenge because teachers find difficulty in creating enough hands on activities. At the same time, I think, as a Language Arts teacher, there are plenty of ways to make the flipped classroom and class time interactive. One weakness I found in the study is that the professors are specifically looking at traditional courses such as Science and Math. They are less focused on arts and English courses. A lot depends on a teacher’s training with flipped classrooms, but I also believe one solution is to form a team of teachers and learn about flipped classrooms together before implementing them.


Atteberry, Emily. “Harvey Mudd Professors’ Research Suggests ‘flipped’ Classes Might  Not Be worth the Hassle.” USA Today. Gannett, 05 Dec. 2013. Web. 20 July 2014.

          Lape, Nancy, Rachel Levy, and Darryl Young. “Can Flipped Classrooms Help Students               
Learn?” Slate. Arizona State University, 25 Apr. 2014. Web. 20 July 2014.

Student Anxiety Online and What to Do

Student Anxiety and Correspondence

Anxious, you walk into a class on exam day as you – a student – nervously attempt to recall every detail from the study guide or your notes. Palms sweat. Forehead perspires and aches. You shake your hands. Maybe you tap your foot. The same anxiety exists for students in an online, hybrid course, or f2f class with mix-use technology.

Flipped Classroom Anxiety

In Monday night’s research blog, I mentioned some concerns college students experience with flipped classrooms. According to Educause in its article “7 Things You Should Know About … Flipped Classrooms,” “The flipped classroom is an easy model to get wrong” because it requires “careful preparation” (2). Considering students with disabilities such as hearing impairments, captions in flipped classroom lessons can help. But, students face anxiety for different reasons whether it’s how a flipped classroom works or does not work with their disability, the professor responds, or access to technology.

Disabilities and Access

As a teacher assistant working with students with different neurological disabilities, I think a lot about how a hybrid or mix-use classroom would cause students’ anxiety. I have also worked with many students who lack or have limited access to the Internet and technology. Jeffrey Stowell, Wesley Allan, and Samantha Teoro argued in “Emotions Experienced by Students Taking Online and Classroom Quizzes” that one of the causes of student anxiety in an online or hybrid classroom is test anxiety, and that teachers should “also be concerned about possible disadvantages to students who do not have computer access at home, which would necessitate that these students access a computer lab” (94). Access to computers and the Internet is a significant concern for some students. I think it is easy for some teachers to assume that students taking an online or hybrid course have access. They may take the class because it is required, and have decided to figure out what to do about Internet access when the class starts.


In addition to concerns about access, Stowell, Allan, and Teoro found that students who experienced less anxiety in class “had significantly higher text anxiety” in a survey about emotions for a psychology study after taking online quizzes (93). One reason students worry deals with the teachers’ use of “‘item banking'” in which different questions are used for different students (94). Scott Warnock has repeated in various chapters in Teaching Writing Online that if a CMS can select random questions for different students on a timed quiz, it reduces chances of cheating. Warnock has also stated that to reduce anxiety with quizzes make them easy, short, and part of low-stakes testing. No matter how a teacher approaches online quizzes, some students will still deal with anxiety. What teachers can do is find ways to reduce anxiety for testing, flipped classrooms, and student access to technology.


I think communication is extremely important, if not more important, between teachers and students in a hybrid or mix-use classroom because the conversation evolves from discussions and lectures in a traditional f2f to what makes up an online environment. I use hybrid and mix-use classroom because I anticipate teaching either hybrid classes or classes which use a lot of technology in the classroom. From reading and discussions in Dr. Kavin Ming’s READ 645 class, I have learned students can teach instructors many lessons about technology. There might be a tool or access issue the teacher faces, and one of the technological savvy students helps the teacher solve the issue. In this situation, the classroom become student driven incorporating the student’s talents. The teacher allows for student leadership. To communicate through example becomes one of the teacher’s most powerful assets because he or she discovers what works and what does not work for particular students.

But, not every student is ready to approach a leadership role. Students still have doubts or concerns about how to communicate in a hybrid environment. Two tools I like for communicating with students in a hybrid or online course include Skype and Twitter. Skype is a great synchronous tool allowing for face-to-face time with the teacher. It may ease student anxiety by having one-on-one time with the teacher. I have always thought putting a face with a name helps establish a connection, and that should not change in an online environment. By using Skype or posting a video, Warnock writes that it “can help lock students back into the idea that you are a real teacher” (145). You want students to be invested in the course, and I believe they are only invested to the extent they perceive their instructors is invested in the course.

A middle school principal in Kings Mountain, N.C. once told me one of the best quotes I’d ever heard regarding middle school students. “To them, everything is all about perception.” I believe this quote extends to high school, and to a degree, to underclassmen in college. How students’ perceive teachers and their investment of time plays a significant role in student participation, interaction, and anxiety. To help students’ comfort in a course, get to know them. Early in Teaching Writing Online, Warnock writes that teachers can use ice breakers online to get to know students. I believe you can do this throughout the course. Teachers can use a tool like Twitter to find out details about a student’s interests, and how to incorporate them into the course.

Twitter can be a great tool if the professor uses it regularly, and discusses before the class officially takes off how students use Twitter. I think the best way to communicate this is either through email or a discussion thread on the professor’s class website. Students can express what they like or dislike about using Twitter. The professor or teacher knows ahead of time. Using that information, teachers create a sense of community online.


Educause Learning Institute. “7 Things You Should Know About … Flipped Classrooms.” Educause. 2012. Web. 13 July 2014.

Stowell, Jeffrey, Wesley Allan, and Samantha Teoro. “Emotions Experienced by Students Taking Online and Classroom Quizzes.” Journal of Educational Computing Research 47.1 (2012): 93-106. Education Full Text (H.W. Wilson) Web. 16 July 2014.

Warnock, Scott W. “Pacing and Predictability: Help Students Get Comfortable in the OWCourse.” Teaching Writing Online. Urbana: National Council of Teachers of English, 2009. 143-146. Print.

Great Article Detailing What You Need to Know about Flipped Classrooms

Some students in WRIT 510 at Winthrop are researching Flipped Classrooms. We research the topic out of interest, for future use, or for the annotated bibliography. Whether an article is published in 2014 or in 2012, new tools, perspectives, and information continually become available for all teachers and professors. Educause Learning Institute’s “7 Things You Should Know About … Flipped Classrooms” presents in seven steps how flipped classrooms grow, succeed, the free tools to use, and students’ positive and negative perspectives.

Educause opens its 2012 article with an excellent example. The student, Kyle, attends a class learning about food gardens. He watches flipped classroom lectures with quizzes from which he receives immediate feedback (Educause 1). In class, he collaborates with a team of students to “repurpose an area the size of an urban backyard into a visually appealing garden that is also a functional food source” (1). While the students cannot always meet to discuss problems that could occur in fruits, they use Google Docs to collaborate (Educause 1). On one hand, Kyle and his group display what Scott Warnock discusses in chapter 13 of Teaching Writing Online about collaboration online. While the group works together during f2f time, they also work together through discussion with an online tool.

Educause explains how flipped classrooms work at the university level. Professors embrace flipped classroom because their class time focuses on hands on learning and students’ questions and discussions (Educause 1-2). For example, a Penn State professor uses flipped classroom lectures for up to 1,300 students and class time for discussion. If there is hands on learning, the professor receives help from student assistants (2). Although he teaches large classes, the Penn State professor attempts to make his class feel smaller by allowing class time for discussion and activities. He recognizes students learn by doing.

Free Tool from a Harvard Professor? What!

While the article features many great components, the primary reason I chose the article is to share this tool. According to Educause, a physics professor has created a site called Learning Catalytics granting teachers “free interactive software enabling students to discuss, apply, and get feedback from what they hear in lecture” (2). While exploring the website, you can take a tour. On the site’s pricing page, you will see an instructor’s account is free.

If, like me, you’re wondering how to incorporate quizzes into a flipped classroom lesson making it more interactive, also check out Quizlet. Many professors and teachers use this as a way to give students instant feedback. Both Quizlet and Learning Catalytics provide options for professors in learning to make flipped classrooms participatory for students.

What Students Say …


According to Educause, some students like flipped classrooms because they participate more in f2f class. Students may also watch parts of the lecture again, and have time to “reflect” on what the professor is saying (Educause 2). Educause also presents a point that I had not considered. ESL students benefit from flipped classroom lectures because they can listen to the lecture more than once. Educause also states that a flipped classroom lesson is more beneficial when it includes captions “for those with hearing impairments” (2). While I wrote last week about how flipped classrooms could benefit students with disabilities, there are so many aspects about which we do not consider. What about students with hearing impairments? Just as a classroom teacher is responsible for differentiating instruction in f2f classes, he or she needs to do the same in a hybrid or flipped classroom.

At the university level, students sometimes perceive flipped classrooms as negative. According to Educause, some students wonder what they’re paying for if their professors’ lectures are available to everyone on the web (2). I think one way to counter this argument is to remember many universities have CMS on which professors upload their flipped classrooms. That way students do not feel cheapened by professors sharing their flipped classrooms with everyone on the Internet.


Educause Learning Institute. “7 Things You Should Know About … Flipped Classrooms.” Educause. 2012. Web. 13 July 2014.

New Flipped Tools for Students with Disabilities and Limited Access to Technology

“Tools we would have historically called ‘assistive technology’ are now available on iTunes.” ~ Patricia Wright

When considering flipped classrooms, there are a few functions or items not clarified.  How can flipped classrooms offer differentiated instruction for students with disabilities such as a speech impairment? What can flipped classroom teachers do with students who lack technological resources at home? Whether considering students with disabilities or students with limited or not access to technology at home, Bridget McCrea shows great apps on the iPad and how a teacher uses flipped classroom instruction for students with limited access to technology in her article “Flipping the Classroom for Students with Special Needs”.

  • Students with Speech Impairments

    In what ways can students with a speech impairment, some of whom are unable to speak, respond to a teacher’s flipped classroom lesson? These students may take an online course or hybrid course. In the Cornwall-Lebanon School District, students with speech impairments use a DynaVox at school, but not when collaborating listening or responding to a teacher’s flipped classroom lesson.

Courtesy of Turning Point Technology. DynaVox has been an assistive technology tool used by some schools for students with speech disorders. One is available in Withers’ ITC.

Unlike DynaVox, which students do not take home, Proloquo2 is an app on the iPad, which allows students to respond to teachers and classmates in an online environment. McCrea writes if a flipped classroom has an interactive part, the student can respond using his or her iPad. The lesson and the app work on the same device.

This is another form of writing. Since the student’s vocal communication is limited, he or she can textually express him or herself using Proloquo2 or a similar app. The app works better than the DynaVox I’ve seen in the ITC because it will change verb tense according to a noun or sentence. Students have more control over what they want to say.

The downside

While not as expensive as a DynaVox, the Proloquo2 is not your average 99 cents app. According to McCrea, the app costs $219.99 (para. 2). Cost is always something online and f2f teachers must consider before jumping on board.

The other disadvantage of an app like Proloquo2 is that not every student has an iPad assigned to him or her by the school district. Not every student has Internet access at home, which limits the involvement of a student with speech impairment.

  • Solutions for Students with Limited or No Access

One of the most significant reasons for reading McCrea’s article is because she helps teachers considering flipped classrooms to think about non-traditional students. Non-traditional student incorporates kids with disabilities, exceptional, or from low economic backgrounds. How can flipped classroom lessons benefit all students? She uses the example of National Teacher’s Academy. According to McCrea, 90 percent of the school’s students are “eligible for free or reduced lunch – and as such, [do not] always have access to technology outside of school …” (para. 7). Teacher, Melissa Hausser, uses flipped classroom lessons, but she adapts them for her students.

In order to facilitate students’ working, she uses a center method. Since there are not iPads for every student, a larger group of students watch a lesson in class on the iPad while Hausser works with a group of five (McCrea para. 8). I had not thought of ways of using flipped classroom lessons in class, but Hausser’s example provides a hybrid example which may work for students with limited access to computers at home. I think using flipped lessons in class may also help students with disabilities because the teacher will work with them in a small group. By using a center method, the flipped lesson in class may also help students feel like they’re receiving one-on-one attention. That is reinforced when students move into a small group to work with the teacher. The students receive one-on-one attention from the teacher in an online forum, and then during small group instruction. This may help students feel more comfortable with the teacher’s role in technology.

  • Assistive Technology to Apps: Closing Thoughts

Assistive technology has been used in the classroom for everything from remedial reading to DynaVox. While helpful, assistive technology is also expensive. For example, McCrea writes that a DynaVox costs $6,000 (para. 2). Gasp, what? While low tech assistive technology is inexpensive, other items like DynaVox will leave moths in a school’s purse. As McCrea also discusses, other assistive technology migrates to apps and online program.

For example, my bosses  wanted my student to use a math computer program from a ten year old CD. None of the newer laptops would accept this CD. Educational programs, like the program provided on the CD, are now apps or they are provided through online sites like IXL.

What educators, like Hausser, will find out involves including flipped classroom lessons for students without technology at home.


McCrea, Bridget. “Flipping the Classroom for Special Needs Students.” The Journal. The Journal, 30 June 2014. Web. 07 July 2014.