What are you curious about? What would you like to learn? Flipgrid your response!

https://flipgrid.com/embed/topic/59cdca

How about making a flipped lesson or activity more attainable and engaging? Well tah-dah, here comes Flipgrid! A free tool that has the potential to capture the most distant learner.

What have our modern learners had at their fingertips since the beginning of their lives? You may have said technology, and you would be correct, but more specifically? Our learners are digital citizens of an inter-connected world woven with a plethora of visual instantaneous stimuli, so why would we think they are still wild about lecture? Are we even excited, energized by sitting and listening to our supervisors throwing information at us with the tired monotone vocal intonations and same old tired visual static presentations? Our learners are using dynamic electronic apps to learn as early as one year of age. So are we expecting that the very same learners who gleefully employ interactive media to learn for the first four to five years of life will abruptly  shift as they enter our classrooms? Will they shut it off and appreciate “sit and get” with joyful exuberance?

We must not kid ourselves any longer. Digigogy is still not recognized by spell check or my embedded dictionary but it should be. Digigogy is a shift in mindset, but can be simply explained as the of technology embedded in instruction and learning. It is an immersion of sorts. It is classroom instruction that innately uses technology as a foundational tool. It does not mean that instruction is exclusively technology reliant.  Great teachers recognize that learners vary and preferences are widespread. Some learners may prefer to touch a book while sitting in the corner and then stand in front of the class to report themes, main ideas and overall importance of the words within.  Others will prefer to download an e-readable book and then visually express the work. Both methods require reading the piece of literature, decoding the language for meaning, discovering the purpose of the author, and importance in society. Additionally, both require synthesizing informational perspectives and articulating them to an audience. Both require comprehensible input, expressive output, and internalization. Why not let them select their preference and demonstrate their strengths? As adults, don’t we get to decide?

On to the burning question of how do we do it? There are an endless number of ways to engage learners digitally. The newest hero in the line-up is Flipgrid! Flipgrid is a free technology tool for a basic version. A more-expanded set of capabilities is available for an upgrade at a still feasible price. It enables educators to create prompts in which learners can respond in a way that feels completely natural to the digital native, video. Short 90 second video clips that can be viewed and shared by the learning facilitator are placed on an online grid. Learners can respond to the prompt, upload their video and watch others’ clips as the teacher permits. A real bonus to the tool is the interconnectedness that will surely expand as the tool gains momentum with educators and learners. Within the connected tab one can potentially link to another classroom, view prompts and responses,  and reply to other learners’. Imagine as an English teacher, connecting with another on a similar topic, and sharing videos with learners responding to one another. The key to learning acquisition has often been attributed to multiple exposures or iterations of the same concepts. What if students responded to your iteration, again to their classmates, and yet again to global citizens possibly thousands of miles away? The manner in which Flipgrid could be used is only as creative as the holder of the tool. immediately after launching the tool could be easily become an essential part of your instructional buffet.

Flipgrid is a tool that is collaborative, interactive, and engaging, whilst not consuming inordinate amounts of time to create or implement. As a classroom teacher for many years, a possessor of Master’s Degree in Educational Technology, a school administrator, and an advocate for at-risk learners I will be a bandwagon jumper on this one! Why? Simply put, Flipgrid is worth the jump. Once you start gridding I am confident you will flip over your digital learners’ results!

Resources:https://info.flipgrid.com/

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