It’s Flipped Friday, where I update how my flipped classes are going. If you want to see how my Intro Stats course is going, check out the day-by-day posts on my StatBlog.
This week I had planned to cover two sections in my intermediate algebra class – multiplication and division of radical expressions, and solving radical equations. I decided to devote half of the two-hour block to the first section, and the rest of the class to the second section. To accomplish this, I had two different pre-class assignments, one for each section.
The topics to be covered were multiplication of one term radical expressions, multiplication using the distributive property, multiplication of two expressions each containing two or more terms, multiplication of conjugates, rationalizing denominators with one term, and rationalizing denominators with two terms. I drew the line for the pre-class flip assignment (direct instruction) to cover all of the topics before rationalizing denominators. That assignment was a MyLab media assignment containing conceptual videos, example videos, and problems for students to work through and submit online.
In class I put a problem on the board and asked students to work through it, compare answers and strategies with a neighbor, and share their answers and strategies with the class. Then we moved on to another problem and repeated the loop. This review of the flip assignment allowed me (and students) to address misconceptions and common errors, adding advice when necessary. This portion of class took 20-25 minutes.
Next we moved on to rationalizing denominators. This part of class was a mixture of students offering their ideas about how to proceed and mini-lectures from me. We also tried several examples following the above loop – try the problem, discuss with a neighbor, class wide debriefing.
In this section I drew the line right before solving equations by squaring both sides of the equation twice. That meant that the application problems also were not part of the pre-class flip assignment. I used a similar strategy for this portion of the class, and left the application problems for next class.
One Flip Assignment Or Two?
I am varied in my approach to flipping this 2-hour block class. Half of the time I have used the approach of two flipped assignments. I have also created one flipped assignment to go with two sections.
You have to go with what you are comfortable with, and you need to keep your students and the material in mind when you make your decision.