Random Thoughts on Instructional Design
The idea of “flipping” the classroom is not a new one. In a letter from Sylvanus Thayer to President James Monroe in 1828, Thayer wrote “A professor can deliver lectures to many more [students] than he can thoroughly teach.”Instead of lecture, Thayer believed that students should be responsible for the content and that class should engage the students in demonstrating/explaining the concepts/principles being learned thus requiring the students to prove their understand the concepts. Note: Thayer’s letters refer to the education of cadets at West Point.
Both the Thayer and Socratic methods of teaching are examples of a flipped classroom. The Thayer method of teaching mathematics and science, like that of the Socratic method for the humanities and social sciences, requires the students to complete some type of activity prior to class and to come to class prepared to engage in the content…
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