Thursday, May 10, 2018

Flipping the classroom???

Something that would really interest me and would really help me in writing this blog is something about YOU, the reader. More specifically, the age demographics of the readers on this blog. However, I am unable to see this and I am going to proceed with an assumption that there are readers on this blog who grew up in the pre-"technology in school" era. As a graduate student in a school with extensive use of educational technology, my goal in this blog is to share with others who did not have this experience growing up. 

Below is a video about the theory of continental shift. This is something students nowadays typically receive as educational tools from teachers, especially for homework. Sometimes the teachers make the videos personally for use as a classroom tool and sometimes they are shared by other online users. An additional item that usually comes with these videos is a worksheet with questions to guide students towards key points in the video. As previously stated, my goal in this blog is to share an experience with those who did not experience this growing up. So I encourage the reader to watch the brief 3 minute video, an attempt to complete a short video guide I have created below. Please feel free to pause the video at anytime or rewind when a reiteration is needed.

                                        Source: Sierra Adler at the Centre for Communication, University of Otago, New Zealand   © 2018  SIERRA ADLER   ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Theory of Continental Shift Video Guide
***To view the answer, please highlight the text in between the arrows. The answer is hidden under the font color.***

1) What is Gondwanaland?

Answer:---> A super-continent that existed about 400 million years ago. <---

2) What did Abraham Orthelius notice in 1587 and then proceeded to suggest?

Answer:---> The shapes of the current continents today fit together and that the continents drifted apart from one another<---

3) Who suggested the theory of plate tectonics?

Answer:---> Jack Oliver<---

4) In what way was it described for tectonic plates fitting to one another?
Answer:---> Like puzzle pieces <---

5) How does magma move?
Answer:--->  By convection (heat rises) <---

6) What shifts the tectonic plates?
Answer:---> Convection currents in the mantle of the earth which are heated by the core of the earth <---

7) What is it called when plates move away from one another? When they move together?
Answer:---> Respectively, Divergent and convergent boundary <---

8) How do seafloors spread? What makes mountains? What causes earthquakes?
Answer:---> Divergent boundaries spread seafloors. Mountains are created by convergent boundaries. Earthquakes are caused by transform boundaries <---

9) How fast are continents moving today?
Answer:---> As fast as our fingernails are growing <---

10) Will earth look the same in another 400 million years?
Answer:---> It will once again be completely different <---

Thank you for completing the video guide. This is something students today receive on a regular basis. These videos along with a video guide for homework are a wonderful educational tool because of the video's ability to be paused and rewound, something that is not always possible in a classroom setting. It ensures that a student is able to "catch" every single point of the "virtual" lesson.

In my senior year of high school, I had a wonderful Calculus teacher by the name of Dr. Fishman. Likewise, he frequently made excellent math tutorials on YouTube for his students. He called his theory behind doing this "flipping the classroom". Instead of instruction during class time, class time is used for exercise problems or something like homework and the actual instruction was done prior to the class by a YouTube video this fabulous teacher created for his students. In addition, to ensure his students attentively watched his YouTube videos at home, he would create a video guide that we would have to complete as a small quiz for a small grade during the beginning of class. This method was extremely effective because we had the ability to review the instruction from the video as many times as we desired.

In conclusion, I hope you enjoyed this small trial that I made for you. It is something students nowadays are using and it is innovative and effective. Just food for thought for educators on this blog.

Alvin Cheung

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