So You Want to Flip Your Elementary Classroom… Now What?

April 21, 2018 No Comments

So You Want to Flip Your Elementary Classroom… Now What?

April 21, 2018 No Comments

In my latest blog post, I talked about what I learned from flipping my elementary classroom.  This is an approach I took to teaching as part of an action research project and I learned a lot about best practices for implementing the flip.

Flip Your Elementary Classroom, Flipped Learning

My hope with this post is that you learn something you can take into your classroom tomorrow to help with a flipped classroom model.

Let’s start with the basics.  Which model will you use?

A flipped classroom is an instructional approach that removes the whole class direct instruction to a video that students view at home before a more hands-on or in-depth lesson at school.  The idea was started by Jonathan Bergmann and you can read more about a flipped classroom approach to instruction in his book Flip Your Classroom: Reach Every Student in Every Class Every Day (affiliate link).

There are alternative models of the flipped classroom approach.  If your school is 1:1, for instance, but the devices stay at school, you can have students watch the videos as they enter the classroom.  Or, close the class with the videos that correspond to the next day’s lessons.

In my case, I only have 6 classroom devices (four desktops and 2 Chromebooks), so I implemented an in-class flip with a station rotation model.  You can read more about this model in this Edutopia blog by Jennifer Gonzalez.  In essence, students rotate through stations and watch the flipped lesson videos at one of the stations.  The other stations provide opportunities for students to work in small groups and pairs to dig deeper into content.

This in-class flip is the model I took in my third-grade classroom and it seemed to work out well for us.  The first step in implementing a flipped classroom approach would be to decide which model you’re going to use.

Which content and which portion of your lesson are you going to flip?

It’s silly to think that you can flip your whole reading, math, science, or social studies lesson.  Especially in elementary school, each content area is full of different components.  Break it down and start with something small.  You can build from there and flip more components if it’s going well.

Here are some ideas to help you frame your thinking about which components of your elementary classroom you want to flip.  Remember, this is often direct instruction that is moved to video format.


  • Introducing vocabulary words
  • Explicit phonics instruction
  • Read-aloud
  • Reading strategies
  • Explicit grammar instruction
  • Modeling a graphic organizer or written response


  • Introducing vocabulary words
  • Introducing/modeling a strategy
  • Modeling an algorithm
  • Build background knowledge by connecting a prior concept

Science/Social Studies

  • Introducing vocabulary
  • Building background knowledge

Where will you get the videos you share with students?

There are two main approaches to take to this problem: find videos made by others or create your own videos.  I, personally, chose to do both when implementing my flip.  There are a ton of wonderful videos out there already made, why re-invent the wheel?

I also found, however, that there were some topics or strategies that were not already available.  For those, I made my own.  I actually really liked making my videos because I found that they were more engaging for my students (what elementary students don’t love seeing their teacher online?) and I was able to tailor my instruction for my students using specific texts and strategies we were using in class.

Below, I’ve listed some of the resources available for finding or creating your own videos.

Pre-made video repositories:

Programs to make your own videos:

Flip Your Elementary Classroom, Flipped Learning

How will you share the videos with students?

There are several ways to share videos with students.  I’ve used two different free platforms – Google sites and Google classroom – and I’ve found advantages and disadvantages to both.  I prefer Google classroom because it’s much easier to push things out to students and hold them accountable for assignments or quizzes.  A Google site is a great place to house videos as it doesn’t require a login, but it makes it harder to hold students accountable.  Although I haven’t tried sharing videos in this way, ClassDojo might be another option.

If your school or district pays for a learning management platform like Schoology, Blackboard, or another similar platform, this might be a great way to get content to students.

How will you assess your students and/or hold them accountable?

When I first started, this was a struggle for me.  You ultimately want a way to make sure that students are watching the videos and getting something out of it.  EdPuzzle has a built-in question feature that allows students to show understanding at points throughout the video chosen by you, the teacher.
In my classroom, I use Google forms/quizzes to give students a short quiz after they’ve watched the video.  I love the data that I glean from the Google form and, because most of our other online work is in the G-Suite of tools as well, it’s extremely intuitive for my students.
Though I haven’t personally used them, I’ve heard that PlayPosit, Vizia, and MoocNote are good ways to hold students accountable and assess in a flipped learning model.
Hopefully, this guide has provided you with a good place to start in creating a flipped classroom.  Have more questions?  Drop me a comment below and let me know!  I’d also love to hear if you know of other technologies that would be helpful for anyone implementing a flipped classroom!
Flip Your Elementary Classroom, Flipped Learning



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  • Anonymous April 22, 2018 at 2:24 pm

    Thank you for sharing all these awesome resource to help with a flipped classroom!

  • Dena Orf April 22, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    What a great post! thank you for the tips!

  • Sheryl Woods April 23, 2018 at 11:22 am

    You are very welcome!

  • Sheryl Woods April 23, 2018 at 11:23 am

    Anytime! I hope you found them helpful!

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    About Me

    Hi! My name is Sheryl and I am so thankful you've found your way to the TeacherLadyKY blog! I'm an elementary educator from Louisville, Kentucky who is passionate about building relationships and literacy skills with my students. I've taught everything from kindergarten to fifth grade and I can't wait to share my experiences with you! Enjoy! Read More


    • Let’s try this again.... since the first one I posted had a spelling error on the letter board 🤦🏻‍♀️🤦🏻‍♀️
I’ve kind of been all over the place for the last eight years, but I’m excited to start year 9 in fourth grade! I’m pumped to be on a BOMB team (we need team nickname, @trish_cummane), learning a new curriculum, and becoming the best teacher YET!
Is it too early to start planning for next year when there are still 12 days left in this school year? 🤓
#teacher #teacherlife #teachersofinstagram #iteachtoo #iteachfourth #iteachfourthgrade #iteachfourthgraders #fourthgrade #teachersfollowteachers #teachersonsummerbreak
    • Here are some onesies I made for my sweet niece. She’s going to rock that HP one!
#cricut #cricutmade #baby #babyfever #babyfashion #babyfashionista #babygirl #babystyle #infantstyle #infantfashion #harrypotter #hpstyle #harrypotterstyle #unicorn #wildchild #cricutcrafting #cricutfashion #cricutstyle
    • I love my job. 
#teacherlife #teachersofinstagram #iteachfifth #iteachtoo
    • Today is a special, special day where I get to celebrate all the people that I love most. 
First, Happy Mother’s Day to my own mother, who taught me that I could do anything I wanted as long as I put my mind to it. She has always had the attitude that there’s no problem that can’t be fixed and she is the always the first one asking how she can help. 
Second, Happy Mother’s Day toy beautiful sister who is a learning and growing and doing a fantastic job at one of the hardest roles in the world. I love watching her be a mom, because she’s so good at it. She is patient and thoughtful, fun and understanding.

And finally, Happy 60th Birthday to my dad, who is the best dad and the best Pa I’ve ever seen. He, like Mom, has always taught me to find a solution and stop worrying about the problem. He’s always there for having fun, even if it means letting your daughters paint your nails or playing dinosaurs with a two year for the thousandth time.  I love you all and I’m so lucky I get to call you mine! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️
    • I had an amazing day graduating and  spending time with my family. I am so proud of how far I’ve come in accomplishing my goals and it makes me feel better about how far I’ve still left to go.
Still, when all was said and done, I came home to face my next obstacle and became immediately anxious and overwhelmed.  I hit a mental block and I stayed there for a while.
I CAN do hard things. I have done them before. I went through college three times. I bought a house, by myself, at 22 years old.  Together, Justin and I have scrounged and saved and paid off thousands in debt.  I CAN do whatever I put my mind to, just like Mom and Dad told me, way back when I was knee-high to a grasshopper. I can accomplish amazing things, I just have to believe in myself.
I wrote in my #starttodayjournal this morning when I woke up, but I was feeling anxious and overwhelmed, so I did it for a second time just now, before I fall asleep. I love how calm, focused, positive it keeps my mind. I can’t wait to write it in again tomorrow.
#starttodayjournal #thegsaclub #starttoday @msrachelhollis @mrdavehollis #rachelhollis #girlstopapologizing #girlwashyourface #gratitude #dailygratitude #dreams #dreamer
    • Sisters night out. We needed this times 1000.
    • Hi, please excuse my while I go cry my eyes out. 😭😭😭😭😭
    • I switched schools three years ago - the summer before I got married.  It was a tough move because I LOVED my students and I felt guilty leaving them, but I knew I needed to make the move. My friend who teaches fifth grade at my previous school had her students write a letter to a former teacher. Two of her students chose me to write to - and then she shared their notes with me.
Yes, these made me cry. NEVER take for granted the impact you have on others and the power of compassion, empathy, and kindness. It has been three years since these students sat in my second grade classroom. Three years since I’ve seen them, but our connection is so strong it seems like just yesterday.
    • This isn’t the best picture BUT I had to show you a shirt I made this week. Every Friday, as my students walk out the door before the weekend, I say to them: “Goodbye. I love you. Have a good weekend!” For some of my students, it’s just words. For some of my students, it’s THE words that helps them get through 2 or 3 days of chaos before coming back to the “calm” that is our classroom. In fact, when I wore it yesterday (we’re off school today), one of kids read it, his eyes popped open wide and he said, “But... but.... that’s what you say to us! Where’d you get that?!?” The joy on his face was priceless. Now, I have a Friday T-shirt that will remind them all day.
I have never one regretted saying I love you to my students because I DO. In every sense of the word, I love them with my whole self and would do anything for them.
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    The TeacherLadyKY blog header and logo were designed by Sheryl, using fonts from A Primary Kind of Life and Brittney Murphy Design.  Clip art is courtesy of Irina Bandyk, whose Etsy shop is WatercolorCliparts.  The blog theme used is Emilia by Georgia Lou Studios.