By Todd Nesloney and Travis Crowder

As educators, we’re always looking for new and creative ways to showcase our knowledge and find people who will inspire and enhance our pedagogy. Over the past year, we’ve become very familiar with a tool called Flipgrid, a resource that allows users to easily create videos. It’s simple. First, users create their own board. Once created, users can share the link to that board, collecting video recordings from anyone! It’s streamlined and simple, making it a tool that is perfect for educators, both in the classroom with students and with colleagues. Flipgrid works well for faculty meetings, grades, book clubs, student collaboration and book talks. Here are some great ways we’ve used it:

  1. Faculty Meetings. As an exit ticket at the end of a staff meeting, have teachers leave a quick Flipgrid response on what they learned during the meeting.
  2. Faculty Book Clubs. We often do a campus book study, but finding the time to sit together as a group and discuss can be difficult. With Flipgrid we can create a new board for each chapter and have staff leave their chapter reflections via video for others to watch and respond to.
  3. Student Book Clubs. When students are driven by interest and choice, they will read widely and voluminously. The books they love become talking points, and they want to talk and write about the characters, events, and outcomes that affected their hearts. With Flipgrid, students can discuss books with each other, share pieces that resonated, set goals for the next book club meeting, and so on. As with faculty book clubs, students can reflect on their reading, share insights and practice interpretative skills through the power of talk.
  4. Collaborative Learning. As students are working at a station in class, leave a guiding question at that station that students must respond to via Flipgrid. When students can showcase their knowledge via a video recording they usually remain much more on task!
  5. Book Talks. Have students or staff leave book talk recordings after they finish reading books. It’s an easy platform for others to continually access the latest and greatest on what people are reading.

 

Flipgrid is a beautiful resource for classrooms and schools, but it is an equally beautiful tool for connecting students and colleagues across your state, country and the world. Imagine students in your classroom exchanging conversation with students around the world. How would their knowledge base grow? How would that experience change them? Would it make them better interpreters of content, of texts, of the world? Take the leap today at https://info.flipgrid.com and see what kind of voices you can bring out in those around you!

Todd Nesloney is the principal of Webb Elementary in Navasota ISD. Todd co-authored Kids Deserve It! and Sparks in The Dark, and is the author of Stories from Webb.

Travis Crowder, a National Board Certified Teacher, teaches middle school students in North Carolina. He co-hosts the popular podcast series “Sparks in the Dark” and is co-author of Sparks in the Dark.

TEPSA News, May/June 2018, Vol 75, No 3

Copyright © 2018 by the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association. No part of articles in TEPSA publications or on the website may be reproduced in any medium without the permission of the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association.

The Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association (TEPSA), whose hallmark is educational leaders learning with and from each other, has served Texas PK-8 school leaders since 1917. Member owned and member governed, TEPSA has more than 5,900 members who direct the activities of 3 million PK-8 school children. TEPSA is an affiliate of the National Association of Elementary School Principals.

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