Friday, February 26, 2016

Rewindable learning & the school library

As a school librarian, I have been aware of “rewindable learning” (also known as Flipped learning), but had never fully jumped in. I had made tutorial how to videos, but never tried to push the majority of my teaching or content to short tutorial how to videos instead of me standing in front of the classroom teaching.
After some encouragement from our technology teacher (and some necessity- multiple projects all falling at the same time), I took the leap and set up content through rewindable learning.
It has been a powerful learning experience for our students as well as for me, and I plan to continue to utilize this method as I collaborate with teachers.

Here are some of my tips for trying it yourself!
  1. How students access the videos and information you provide is almost as important as the videos and information themselves. If done well, when students have a question, you can refer them to the resource document to answer the question independently, and avoid repeating the same directions again and again.
  2. Using rewindable learning also meant that I did not have to be physically available during every part of the project. Classroom teachers became empowered and learned alongside the students. What began as necessity due to many projects being scheduled at the same time, also became a tool for teachers. They were able to refer students to the document where I had video and other directions to help answer questions.
  3. Students were put in charge of their own learning. First, instead of listening to me talk and model how to use 5 different resources, students picked what resources would be most helpful to them at the time of need. They then watched the “how to use” tutorial video and were able to jump into their research. They were not forced to sit and listen to instruction that was not immediately relevant to them. It was a better use of their time and made their learning more meaningful because it was relevant.
  4. Rewindable learning is perfect for when students are absent. It never fails that students will be gone during a research project. Even with our best plans, it always seems there is someone who needs to catch up. Having instruction in a video format makes this much simpler, saving the time of the teacher and the other students.

I first tried using rewindable learning with 6th graders working on a research paper, and shortly after was able to try it with an 8th grade research paper as well. It has gone over well with both students and staff. I plan to use similar documents for future research projects.

Here is the resource document I created for our 6th graders. There are links to the resource as well as video tutorials.