Those who have followed this site over the last few months know that attendees at FlipTech 2018 in Collingswood, NJ had an amazing time, and many have shared their reflections in the form of blog posts. As a testament to the lasting impact of this event, we have a belated reflection coming from one of several attendees from South America. We are currently working to coordinate plans for the next FlipTech conference, and with any luck we may hold two of them next year. Please stay tuned to this site (subscribe for posts via email using the form in the right hand side bar, or follow us on social media) for details as they emerge! – K. Walsh
I will never forget June 29 and 30. FlipTech East Coast 2018 at Collingswood High School was the opportunity to travel and meet the kindest people I have ever met. There is more than one aspect I would like to highlight from this experience. First, when I think thoroughly, FlipTech conference could not have happened without the effort and love from Dave, Melissa and their awesome team. It was the first time I went to a high school in the United States. It was astonishingly organized; the site had beautiful spaces to hang out and learn. I was thrilled to see even the artwork shown in the library to boost reading! Also, the presentations were varied and relevant. It was like home because I could interact with many teachers from different areas of expertise and countries/states in one place. Again, thank you!
Second, Aaron Sam’s mind-blowing presentation. Meeting Aaron was awesome, he is kind and welcoming. I connected everything I have learned about Flipped Learning with what he said in his presentation. He highlighted the need to create spaces where students learn and personalize our teaching to each one of our students. This drives me to the point I want to improve in my classes. I want more opportunities for learning and mastery; therefore, I want to focus my lessons more on Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS) and, of course, understand and support my students during their learning process. It was a refreshing experience for my teacher/researcher’s role in the classroom. In addition, I had the chance to talk to my friends Carolina and Martha, Birgit Jensen, Rob, Laine, Kate, Andrew, and many more. We had so many things in common; one of them was that we want “fertile spaces” (taken from Laine) for our students to enhance learning, creativity and critical thinking on them. Also, I learned and reflected from these conversations that scaffolding should be our motto. It determines how, why and what we want to teach.
Moreover, students from Collingswood High School were included in the conference. It was the first time I had the opportunity to identify the Flipped Learning approach impact on students’ learning process in an innovative format. Those students were pointing out some aspects we need to take into account for our classes. One of them was related to videos creation; students stressed on the importance of making them short and meaningful. Therefore, teachers can include jokes and unexpected comments to enhance students’ motivation and connection to the topic. Students were straight-forward with their suggestions and opinions, I really loved that.
Last but not least, my first international presentation. I would like to thank Caro for her continuous support during this long, but amazing process. It has been a hard work to reach that point regarding Flipped Learning in the EFL (English as a Foreign Language) context. We were really grateful because Aaron Sams and Laine Marshall were interested in our presentation. It was an honor for us since we described the writing process and writing workshops impact on the EFL context.
Finally, FlipTech conference was an event to really talk about what we have been doing in our context, how to help our students and how to improve our teaching practices. I opened myself to brand new information towards Flipped Learning and I could share and learn from others. I was very grateful! and once again, Thank you!