The Free Technology for Teachers guru, Richard Byrne, is amazing! He has a way of quickly reviewing and aligning the functionality of different digital technologies to different educational settings and assessing their usefulness. He is a must to follow - I have been since about 2009 - and he never ceases to amaze me with the sheer variety of technologies but more importantly, his clear statements about how he thinks they could be useful in the classroom.
Recently, he has reveiwed 7 tools to use in one of my favourite pedagogies - flipping the learning. By co-incidence, I also talked to a journalist about flipping. There seems to be a surge of interest in flipping in New Zealand. Flipping, of course, has evolved so much since the first years when Aaron Sams and Jonathon Bergmann started videoing their Woodland Park, Colorado lessons and posting them online so that students who had been absent through illness or school- based activities could catch up. They found that all of their students started using the videos for their own learning.
Sams and Bergman started to get the students to watch the videos at home first and then come back to them with any questions the next day at school. As a result, their lessons evolved into interactive, student centred learning rather than teacher led "lectures. Nowadays the two recommend short videos that engage the students easily, to be watched in their own time. This approaches a more personalised learning paradigm, or at least an individualised one.
As you start to make the move towards personalised learning in your classes, consider a flipped approach. It is important that you make use of the relationship that you have with your students to connect with them through video. Video is a powerful and engaging medium. The flipped learning network is a useful organisation to belong to. They have come up with a great explanation of what they believe flipped learning to be, and an easy to remember mnemonic (FLIP) which characterises the concept.
I am about to run a workshop on Flipping the Learning using Google Apps - it might be worth a look at the slides if you have an interest in trying flipping out. I am happy to field questions about this important pedagogical approach. Happy to help you walk this way.
Have a happy Connected Educator month!