1. I got to meet Karl Lindgren-Streicher! In person! In Seattle! Not just on Google+ hangout! We spent a fun day talking Flipped Class and General Life Topics of Interest. I also got sunburned...at a beach...in Seattle. Will wonders never cease? And since Karl and I live, like, fifteen minutes from each other, we will certainly be doing that again....although next time, probably closer to home.
2. Andrew and I have some big, big ideas to debut soon. None are really ready for Prime Time, but the afternoon I spent with Karl yielded some amazing things when Andrew and I debriefed. Yes, this is totally vague and general. But you'll all know soon enough!
3. Blank White Page has gone meta. I'll talk more about this as we get the site built, but Andrew, Karl and I have been working on our VERY OWN BWP project. Since Andrew has never been to the Pacific Northwest, we were talking about what the armpit of California looked like (the answer? Corning). Then we realised that instead of describing it, I could just start texting him pictures along the way - the BWP question was "What is the West Coast of America like? How have those places shaped who you are?". And thus was a BWP Satellite project born. So when I met Karl in Seattle, he gladly offered to join the cause of "Show Andrew the West Coast" and the project went from "fun distraction" to "a whole new level of awesome." We will be cataloging and posting this project when both Karl and I get home.
4. With Andrew's encouragement, I've started writing some creative non-fiction. It has been really rewarding and I want to (again, as always) publicly thank him for not only encouraging me, but making the first draft of what I wrote readable to someone who is not in my head. Writing is something I gave up on years ago, and it's been fun to remember all the reasons why I loved writing so much.
Here are some NON-vacation updates:
1. The Research Paper Writing series is pretty much done! I'm still editing the final conclusion videos (and I'm half done!), but all the prewriting, drafting, and introduction videos are posted to our YouTube channel. We think they started getting better around video 4, but we're proud of the progress we've made.
2. Next on the agenda is the first in our flipped reading strategy collaborative video. We will introduce a writing strategy and then walk through a text and a literary analysis essay. That series will start soon...as soon as we can get a functional wifi connection and some time.
3. We have posted another Conversations in Flipped English video on YouTube. This time, it's about keeping the humanity in flipped English class. The first in the series is found here (on Content vs. Process flipped videos). We hope you find them helpful! Here is our ENTIRE Flipped Professional Development archive as well.
4. As we finalise our plans, we will be posting the first unit plan Andrew and I plan to teach (that we wrote together). It covers the basics on technology, what a flipped class is (for students/parents), reading and writing basics, blogging, working in a collaborative group, using peer feedback and group evaluation to develop norms, etc. It's in (near) final draft, so you should see it here soon. It is our intention to post our curriculum material and videos for free, so that as many teachers as possible can see that English is flip-able, and is something they can do without throwing out everything they've ever done.
That's about it for now. I'm looking forward to a few more days on the road, then the Flipped Class workshop in San Jose on the 2nd (and meeting Crystal Kirch in person, finally!), followed by a mini-retreat to have some time in solitude, then coming back rested and throwing myself into preparing for school!
I have loved reading all the comments from people here, and I'd also love to hear any questions you have about flipping English, or topics you'd like Andrew and I to cover in our next Conversations video. And I really hope you all are having a beautiful summer, which is at least as full of family, friends, and fun as it is of flipped class work. :-)