Student Voice – #FlipgridFever

One website has been taking over the educational technology world by storm. If you haven’t already caught the #FlipgridFever, you might catch it soon. Flipgrid is a website that allows a teacher to create a place (grid) for students to respond to prompts by a recorded video. I first heard about Flipgrid as it was repeatedly mentioned on the Google Teacher Tribe. It took me a while, but I finally decided to give it a shot, and boy, was it worth it!

Before I go into some of the uses of Flipgrid, let me provide you with a bit more explanation. There are two versions of Flipgrid. Flipgrid One gives you access to one grid with some limited options: 15 second or 90 second responses, no responses as videos, no customizable feedback forms. Flipgrid Classroom gives you access to unlimited grids and more options: many different time limits up to 5 minutes, student-to-student video responses, customizable feedback forms, and the ability to add other teachers.

Here is an example of what this looks like. The teacher creates a grid and can set some security features for the grid, such as password protection and response moderation. The teacher then creates topics for students to respond to. The students go to the grid and appropriate topic where they record themselves responding. Students in the class can then hear their classmates’ responses, and if you have Flipgrid Classroom, they can respond to each other as well.

After you finishing recording your video, you have the option to preview it and delete or accept it. Once you accept it, you get to the fun part: taking a selfie! Students love this because they can show off something about themselves and add emojis, stickers, and drawings.

Classroom Uses

If you are thinking about how you could possibly use this in your classroom, let me provide you with a few examples (there are so many more beyond this).

  1. Reading discussion: Think about how often you might ask reading questions that go beyond comprehension. When you do this in class, you are lucky to get quality responses from half the class. Using a video response, those who are less likely to jump in right away get to share their voice, and you can use these videos to spark further discussion.
  2. Foreign language practice: Having authentic conversations and speaking the language is one of the most powerful ways to learn a new language. However, this can be difficult to do for all students within the classroom. Provide students a time to record their answer to a question as they practice speaking the language.
  3. Beginning of the year introductions: Getting to know students at the beginning of the year is important for developing relationships. Provide your students the opportunity to share about themselves and learn more about their classmates.
  4. End of the year reflections: On the opposite side of things, taking time to reflect on learning at the end of the year is important. Students can reflect on what has been their favorite part of class, what they learned, etc. This helps you as a teacher see what made an impact on your students.
  5. Connecting globally: One of the greatest things about technology is how we can connect with others across the globe. There are great tools such as Google Hangouts and Skype that allow us to directly video conference with others, but sometimes time zones and schedules can make that difficult to accomplish. Using Flipgrid, you can create a grid to connect with another classroom where your students can share back and forth, learning about different communities and cultures.
  6. Appsmashing: One of the best things about this is that you can also upload video files as your response. This means that students could be create a screencast and share that. This opens up a whole wide world of possibilities as students share and explain their work.

These are just a few examples to get started. Many educators have added to the discovery library in Flipgrid, providing you with ready-made examples. Honestly, Flipgrid is that easy to get started, and students of all ages can use it because it is easy to post. Besides just showing what students know, students also develop speaking and listening skills. I have seen many of my students grow in their ability to explain answers and respond appropriately to classmates.

Share your favorite ways to use Flipgrid in the comments section!

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