Dear Mr/Mrs President,
While attending school I've noticed the extravagant amounts of homework given to my peers and I. There seems to be more homework that is not comprehended then homework completed and fully understood. More personally I am writing this because I am on overload with homework and a lot of it I need help with. I feel that you're the person I should come to with this issue because you seem to be a caring and genuine person. It would be nice to have a teacher by my side helping me through the tons of homework they assign to me. Schools should implement the idea of a flipped classroom to help students more fully understand the work they were assigned
I know what you're thinking, what's a flipped classroom? The idea of the flipped classroom reverses the traditional learning environment by delivering instructional content, often online, outside of the classroom. It moves activities those while would have usually been considered homework, into the classroom. In the classroom your task would be to engage in the concepts you've reviewed at home. With guidance from a mentor. In other words homework from a normal school system is moved to the classroom while lessons are moved to outside the classroom on your own time. Articles are proving the many benefits of implementing this idea, “Tyler Johnston, an algebra teacher in Folsom, CA, is one of the growing number of educators who have integrated the flipped model into their classrooms. Johnston posts about four video lectures a week to YouTube. Students take notes while they watch the lectures and are usually assigned a few problems at home to reinforce the concept, but most of the actual work is done in the classroom, where Johnston can help the students comprehend the material further” (Edward Graham and Tim Walker, 2013). This one classroom has proved the success of the idea. Because the homework is often more engaging most students will be watching the assigned videos daily.
Constantly I'm stuck up late with nothing but the computer screen lighting my face. I can't count the amount of times my paper has been wet with the tears from my stress. I can't tell you the last time I got a full eight hours of sleep. With the flipped classroom I would be able to get help from my teachers. The teachers will be able to individualize instruction for students because the foundation was already built at home. Teachers are constantly assigning what I like to call ‘busy work’ just for sake of maybe helping one student. In this case since you learn it at home you can take however long you need to understand the lecture and then come to class ready to practice with the information. Students won't just be handed work to figure out and finish the rest at home because they will come to class with an understanding of the work in front of them. It would no longer be busy work because then the teachers would have more time to help with one individual student on just their needs instead of taking a whole class hour to go over the new information. The flipped classroom could help eliminate confusion going on at home with the students homework. This method may actually help students learn at their own pace in an environment that works for them.
What if the students don't do their homework? There's bound to be someone who doesn't watch the lessons provided to them at home. If students don’t do their homework now then why would anyone expect them to do their homework with this new system. The students who don't do their homework now aren't understanding the content anyways. This system is to help the students who want to succeed, they want to understand. They aren't just going through the motions just to get it over with. Yes, some students won't do their homework but when did they ever do it now. Yes, some students won't succeed but it will be because of the effort they put into it and the commitment they have for school. You would think students would want to succeed as most of us spend more time doing school work and being with teachers then we do with our own family. Students who just don't care will not have the desire to learn either way so why not benefit the students who want to learn and understand the content. With this system students who desire to succeed will benefit.
I happen to sympathize with the students in the case of the big homework debate. Students do receive too much homework, but maybe it's the not the quantity of the homework it's the time it takes to comprehend the work given to us every night. Results from the flipped classroom show an improvement. Research proves, “There is growing evidence that the flipped classroom model can improve student achievement in nearly any subject. According to the Flipped Learning Network, 71% of teachers who flipped their classes noticed improved grades, and 80% reported improved student attitudes as a result” (Panopto, 2014). If there is so much evidence of improvement why are all classrooms not applying it? Thinking about learning at home then applying your understanding in class makes so much sense to me. Here is where many people might object the idea of this new system because yes you will still get homework. Although you still have homework to do it seems to be less stressful because the work is watching a video rather than applying and attempting to comprehend the work. You then will get the opportunity to do the stressful work in class with guidance from your teacher.
Now that I've given you a lot of facts and research for you to think about I know what you're thinking, what's your point? When I get home from a long day of school I feel like my homework is towering over me. As the night gets later the I am less focused and I understand a significantly less amount of my homework. If this new system was implemented the teacher would be present while we apply our new knowledge, also we can learn the information at our own pace. I like the thought of being able to go back in the lecture if you miss something. These benefits are things that aren't as possible with the systems most schools use now. I hope you take into consideration the flipped classroom as this idea would benefit myself and the students around me.
Sophomore at Clarkston High School
@panopto. "The Benefits of the Flipped Classroom." Panopto Video Platform. N.p., 30 Dec. 2014. Web. 30 Oct. 2016.
@NEAToday. "What 'Flipped' Classrooms Can (and Can't) Do for Education - NEA Today." NEA Today. N.p., 15 Oct. 2015. Web. 30 Oct. 2016.
"Flipped Classroom." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, n.d. Web. 30 Oct. 2016.