Follow-up from online session: Experiencing the Snow Day Flip

Did you miss today’s session and want a repeat?
If this is something that might be of interest, NAISAC11 would consider hosting another session in the near future. Email if you would like another offering of this session during a week night.


The following are some of the key points from today’s session.

  • You don’t need a snow day to start flipping your class
  • Don’t wait for an unplanned day to try some of these techniques and technologies. Start now and make this a new norm in your teaching.
  • Don’t use tech for tech sake. Consider how your use of the technology will create a stronger learning environment. Remember, it is not about the tools but about the way you use the tools.
  • When you flip, let your students do most of the work with the content. Don’t just deliver the content remotely. Try to avoid the talking head.
  • Extend the classroom norms to the online environment. The online space is an extension of the physical space. Set these expectations early but allow for a little early exploration with the novelty of this approach
  • Start to think about seat time differently. What will you do in class when you make the students responsible for content? Where does homework fit it? Could this be part of the replacement for traditional homework? Again, be careful of the” course and a half.”
  • Be careful you don’t create a “course and a half”. If you truly flip, and push content out of the classroom, consider how you will use your face to face class time differently.
  • Leverage both synchronous and asynchronous technologies when working from a distance.
  • Try to avoid the “lecture” as a way to deliver content from a distance. Allow for experiential learning, interactions and collaboration.
  • For synchronous meetings, consider meeting for about 20 minutes in a common space online. Use this space and time to frame the experience- provide context. Then send students to remote digital rooms to work through the material/problems presented. Set a time for everyone to return to class for a quick wrap-up. Have students then work on own or continue in groups creating what I call an artifact of understanding.
  • Artifact of understanding. This is something that the student creates that captures the student’s level of understanding through synthesis of the material. This can be anything from a reflective blog post to videos, sound recordings, media presentations, artwork, creative writing, collection of images with reflective text etc. Match the artifact of understanding with the nature and complexity of the material being explored.
  • If you have an unplanned flip and want to be synchronous with your students, consider scheduling your meeting times the same as they would be if you were in class that day. This will eliminate conflicts with other teachers trying to do the same.
  • Use the tools that you have available. You don’t have to purchase expensive tools to flip your classroom.
  • Leverage existing content through learning object repositories, Youtube and other video sharing sites and places like the Khan Academy (General Session speaker at this year’s conference)
  • You can leverage the anonymous aspect of many of these tools for the teaching of difficult topics in ethics etc. However, you will want to students identified most of the time.
  • If you want the students to use their real names in these open online environments, consider giving participatory credit which can only be granted if they are correctly identified.
  • Consider “teaching naked”. First, this is Not a question of teacher dress but rather a philosophical approach to teaching when you place the responsibility for content in the hands of the students. While we did not specifically address this today, much of what was presented was framed with this philosophy in mind. Teaching naked was coined by Jose Bowen who is the Dean of the Meadows School of the Arts at SMU. Read his essay for additional context and review the materials below.


  • Google Docs: ( Use the public share and email or post the link for your students. This works well for collaborative document work in the word processor or data collection with the spreadsheet.
  • Chatzy: ( This is a very easy text chat tool that does not require participants have an account. Simply create the chat space and post the link for your students. This space will automatically archive the chat so it makes a great breakout space for group work allowing the teacher to see the conversation when the discussions are done.
  • Tinychat: ( This is another simple chat tool but extends text chat to also include video and audio if desired. This is very easy to set up and use and again, your students do not need to set up an account in order to participate in the learning spaces you create for them. Warning though, it does provide the opportunity to sign in with Twitter, Myspace, Facebook. You will not likely want to do that as you may find your class chat going public through these other spaces.
  • Ether Pad: ( This is a very simple tool that allows collaborative editing of a document and also provides a timeline view of document development. This tool was purchase by Google and they have made the code open and free. You can install this on a local server if desired which will provide you branding opportunities and control over how long your collaborative documents will live on the web. As we are not currently hosting this, I find ietherpad to be very stable.
  • WiZiQ: ( This is a free tool similar to Elluminate but without the bells and whistle and stability of Elluminate. However, if you don’t have Elluminate or Wimba, this is well worth the cost (Free). For those familiar with DimDim, this is a similar tool. However, DimDim was purchased recently and will sunset sometime in March.
  • Youtube Custom Player ( This is a great way to create and a player that you can post on virtually any HTML page. This is the player that was shared in today’s session. Set up a Youtube account and start to save videos to your playlists. Name your playlists according to topic which will allow you to create topical custom players. This is an example of a player that was created for the 2009 NAIS Classrooms of the Future project.
  • Wall Wisher: ( This is a very simple tool that allows you to collect short comments/posts of 160 characters or less on a single page. These are like Post-It notes for the web. This is a great way to collect quick feedback during your lesson or to use as a way to gather ideas prior to going back into a face-to-face class.
  • Polleverywhere: ( This is a simple polling tools that can be used during presentations or to quickly collect data that can be used during a lesson or to engage the students or check for basic misconceptions on a lesson. Responses can be entered via text using a cell phone or through the web.


  • Jaycut: This is a great, simple, free tool that teachers and students can use to create and edit video. Teachers can use this to create video content that can be used to set the stage or student creation of knowledge. Students can use this to create dynamic artifacts of understanding. These videos can then be posted within Jay cut or moved to Youtube, Vimeo or other video sharing site. This entire application lives online so it is cross platform and does not require any installation.
  • Jing: This is a free version of their more powerful tool Snagit/Camtasia. This tool is a small download and allows you to create screen capture video. It does a nice job an can be used to create instructional videos for your students as well as videos providing content and context.
  • Screenr: This tool is like Jing but does not require any installation. It is cross platform and is also very easy to use for creating videos. The catch here is that your video goes out over twitter when you are done. This makes it easy to distribute as you can then link from your tweet to any space you want to share with your students. These videos can also be pulled into an editor such as Jaycut above for additional editing and reposting in other spaces.


Jose Bowen- Teaching Naked

The Flip

Content Sources: There are many and it would be impossible to list them. However, here are a couple places that you might want to explore for content across disciplines.

  • Merlot: Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching
  • Khan Academy: This is a wonderful collection of instructional videos organized by discipline, topic and subtopic.

Recording from today’s session: We had some audio problems at the beginning but got that sorted out during the live session. However, the audio did not capture. You can watch the video with the participant chat and the general flow. However, we also moved outside of this space and most of that activity can’t be captured. If this is something that might be of interest, NAISAC11 would consider hosting another session in the near future. Email if you would like another offering of this session during a week night.

Did you miss today’s session and want a repeat?
If this is something that might be of interest, NAISAC11 would consider hosting another session in the near future. Email if you would like another offering of this session during a week night.

This entry was posted in Activity, Salman Khan. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Follow-up from online session: Experiencing the Snow Day Flip

  1. Pingback: The Daily Find: February 8, 2011 | NAIS Annual Conference 2011 Community

  2. Pingback: REPEAT: Experience the Snow Day Flip | NAIS Annual Conference 2011 Community

  3. Pingback: The Flipped Classroom Advances: Developments in Reverse Learning and Instruction « 21k12

  4. Pingback: Advancing the Flip: Developments in Reverse Instruction | Connected Principals

  5. Pingback: Experience Snow Day Flip- Recording and Resources | NAIS Annual Conference 2011 Community

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