This weekend, several teachers emailed our group asking for more information and I sent an email, detailing how I figured out this whole Flipping thing. I thought I'd post part of that email here because I haven't seen a list out there that gives specific starting steps (forgive me if there is and I just haven't seen it!) for someone in the humanities who is considering flipping.
Here are the first steps I took, and that I would encourage you to take:
1. Get involved with #flipclass chat - it happens Mondays at 5 PM. Just follow #flipclass...as a warning, it is CRAZY - sometimes about 30 messages in a minute, so it works better if you're on an iPad or computer. But I've done it on my iPhone and it's possible, especially if you're just watching on the first one. All of the chats are archived, so if you follow @bennettscience (he created and manages #flipclass chats) you'll find them. At least find me on Twitter (@guster4lovers) and I'll help you get plugged into my flipping network.
2. Get on Edmodo or Moodle. They're both free platforms that your students can get onto to have discussions, take quizzes, and have a secure network in which to interact. I use Edmodo, and have gotten a TON from the group FlipShare (code: 0ywjwj - that's a zero). There are some great teachers on there, and there's a lot of cross-over with the Twitter group.
3. Figure out a way to make screen-casts or videos and start experimenting RIGHT NOW. If you have an iPad, I would recommend ShowMe - it's a free app that lets you use the iPad as a virtual whiteboard. (and if you don't have an iPad, GET ONE! They have so many applications for education!) You can see the videos I've made at my showme profile: www.showme.com/cherylmorris. There are some great pay-for-use softwares, amoung them Camtasia is the one rated the highest. My district has SMARTrecorder installed on all the computers already, so you might check with your IT department about what software people are already using.
4. Start a blog. Seriously. There are only a few of us flipping in the humanities, and we really need more voices out there, even if you're only figuring it out as you go. Mine is www.morrisflipsenglish.com, and a friend of mine runs http://www.flipped-history.com/. There are literally only about a dozen people flipping HS history/English that I know about, so we're pioneers, people. We may have to lead the way, rather than following others, but the flipped revolution is about to start. In a year, everyone will know about flipping. Seriously, it's going to be HUGE.
5. You should get on http://flippedlearning.org/ and attend the virtual FlipCon12 if you can (the virtual conference is $97 and you can attend all the sessions virtually...all the seats are sold out). The guys who run both are the ones who created the flipped model in 2007 and are the experts in the industry. Their book is out next month and will be a big help as you consider how flipping fits in your classroom.
6. Come see what I do (this only works for people in the Bay Area, obviously). Until you see it, it's hard to understand it. If you know people in your district or school who are trying it, go see them, even if they teach a different subject. If you can't come before school gets out, I'm teaching June School and I'll be running English 9, 10, 11, and 12 simultaneously in a flipped mastery model. Wow. Just writing that makes me nervous...it's still in planning stages, but it'll be a chance for me to try out a bunch of ideas and see what works.
Our mantra in the flipping movement right now is, "it's not all about the video" - you can flip without making videos at all. You can also flip without making your students watch videos at home - a lot of teachers give students the option of watching in class if they don't have the technology at home....they just use stations and that's one station. The point of flipping is re-imagining how class time is used; instead of delivering information, you are guiding students in developing their skills and practicing with the knowledge they've gained.
I hope that's helpful. I started wading in gradually in January, but I jumped in fully about three months ago, and I would never go back. I think you'll find that most of us who have flipped say that.
It's a great time to be a teacher right now. Especially a teacher who is into technology.
I feel like I say this a lot, but if you are a teacher flipping in the humanities, LET ME KNOW! I feel like the blind leading the blind at times, and I'd love to see what you do and steal..