Flipping Jewish Studies
The Lookstein Center initated a professional development program to train Jewish studies teachers in the theory and practice of “flipped” learning. Starting in 2013, teachers worked in small collaborative inter-institutional groups to hone and refine skills and techniques, as well as learn from experts and facilitators. As they learned, they trained each other and build inter-school networks for cooperative work–and developed the videos that can be seen here.
Testimonials and comments from participants:
“I have been making many changes in my classroom as a result of the flipped approach. I have been creating videos for parsha and halacha to help the students prepare for class and to study for my tests. My students love when I post videos and I have surveyed them and they overwhelmingly said that they find them helpful. I also have been posting videos that other people have created and using them”
“..[in the videos, I create] I usually will include a link to a google form for the students to fill out after watching the video. The students find the videos helpful. I recently gave them a test and encouraged them to watch the videos again which many of them did. I was happy to see that some even redid the google forms while studying for their test.”
“As a Chumash teacher of both a lower level and higher level class I can say that both classes are benefitting from the flipped classroom model in different ways. The advanced class finds the videos productive because it gives them the opportunity to analyze the information on a deeper level in class. The basics are covered at home and consequently the class time can be used to take the material to the next level.
“I strongly believe that the flipped model has enhanced the learning of the lower level class in so many ways. These students have a harder time paying attention and can learn the information more quickly when they see and hear it. In addition, they can watch the video as many times as they wish without anyone knowing. Most importantly, the students feel extremely empowered the next day in class. The information is not new to them. They can answer questions, participate in discussions and even analyze the material because they had time to process it. Finally, the students feel proud when they see their responses to the google form posted during the lesson. “
“I have to tell you. This whole flipped classroom experience has truly impacted my teaching in such a positive way on so many levels.”
“I feel that for my students, they gain a lot by watching a presentation outside the classroom, since they are challenged to watch without asking immediate questions to a teacher. This forces the student to pay more careful attention. This fosters better understanding from the student- but again, the video lesson must be clear.”
“When a video lesson is prepared correctly, it can engage the students in ways you cannot accomplish easily in class.”
“It also allows the teacher to teach more efficiently, since he/she can now take the time to focus on different aspects of the material.
“I feel students are excited about the technology which in turn excites them about the subject matter.”