The Flipped Classroom model inverts traditional teaching methods, delivering instruction online and reserving class time for collaborative work and concept mastery education.

A flipped classroom is one in which students are introduced to content at home, and practise working through it at school.

In this blended learning approach, face-to-face interaction is mixed with independent study via technology. Students watch pre-recorded videos at home, then come to school to do the homework armed with questions and at least some background knowledge.

The concept behind the flipped classroom is rethink when students have access to the resources they need most. If the problem is that students need help doing the work rather than being introduced to the new thinking behind the work, than the solution the flipped classroom takes is to reverse that pattern

The 'flipped classroom' was popularised by U.S. chemistry teachers Jonathan Bergmann and Aaron Sams. When they recorded chemistry lectures and made them available online for students who missed class, they discovered other students also used them. This left more time for hands-on labs or interactive activities in the classroom. Student outcomes improved. Bergman believes the biggest impact of flip teaching in his classroom is to increase human contact.

Bergmann says the Flipped Classroom act as

  • a means to INCREASE interaction and personalised contact time between students and teachers
  • an environment in which students take responsibility for their own learning.
  • a classroom where the teacher is not the "sage on the stage", but the "guide on the side"
  • blending of direct instruction with constructivist learning
  • a classroom in which students who are absent due to illnes or extra-curricular activities such as athletics or field-trips are not left behind
  • a class in which content is permanently archived for review or remediation
  • a class in which all students are engaged in their learning
  • a place in which all students can get a personalised education.

There are more than 2,400 online video lessons available from the Khan Academy.

Pre-mission lessons for the Mission to Mars at VSSEC for year 8 and 9 students provide online instruction and classroom labs and activites, and are suitable for the 'flipped classroom'.