Saturday, September 23, 2017

Flipgrid and Genius Hour

So I have to admit...I definitely have #flipgridfever right now.  I have been reading so much about how teachers are using it to creatively give opportunities for reflection, connection, and collaboration.  The more that I read, the more I realize how powerful this tool can be for learners.

Just yesterday, Ethan Silva (a 6th grade Social Studies teacher at China Spring ISD), shared on Voxer how he was hoping to use Flipgrid as he starts Genius Hour in his classroom.  After listening and thinking about the role Flipgrid could play in Genius Hour, I thought I might share some of the ideas that I had.

I couldn't help but think about the huge role that reflection plays in Genius Hour and how powerful video reflection is for our learners.  What a perfect fit!  I instantly thought about the 6 P's of Genius Hour and how educators could set up a Flipgrid to use throughout the entire process.

If you haven't heard of the 6 P's, this was a process that I used in my classroom to make Genius Hour manageable for and meaningful for my students.  Each one of the 6 P's is an important part of the process and gives students a kind of roadmap to follow so that they don't become lost or overwhelmed by the openness of such a project.

When I thought about the potential that Flipgrid has to make this process even more manageable and more meaningful, I was pumped!

So, I jumped onto Flipgrid and created a Genius Hour Grid, just to see what it might look like and how easy it might be to create.  I created the grid in about 10 minutes and could not wait to share how I thought this could be done to create a place for students share and reflect throughout the Genius Hour process.

As you can see in the image above, I created one grid and a topic within that grid for each of the 6 P's.  In the topic description, I asked questions that students might answer when they posted their video to the grid.  

Passion - What do you want to learn about? What do you think is interesting? What can you get excited about?

Students could also share their Thrively results here or even post a picture of their Passion Bracket.

Plan - Who will be your outside expert? What materials will you need to complete the project? What will you need to do each day to reach your goals?  How much time will need?

Pitch - How will you share your idea with the class? How will you get us on board? 

What do you know?  What do you want to know?  How will you find out? (KWH)

- What did you learn today?  What connections did you make and what would you like to share?

You might include the link to the Reflection QR code here so that students can respond to the question that they randomly receive.  You could also attach the QR code as an image and students could scan to receive their question.

Product - What did you create? What can you show us to demonstrate your learning?  If you were unable to create a product, what could you have done differently?

Presentation - How do you plan to share your learning? Can you share your idea or project with others? What tools will you use to make your presentation engaging for the audience?  

What did you learn?  What action did you take?  What questions do you still have?  (LAQ)

In creating the Flipgrid, I realized that it's important to put the 6 P's in backward so that they will be in the correct order.  In other words, when creating the grid, create Presentation as the first topic and Passion as the last topic.  This way, when it's complete, Passion will be on top with Presentation at the bottom.

As students move through the process, they can post their thoughts, reflections, and responses on the grid.  This gives them the ability to pitch, present, and reflect any time from anywhere.  This takes away the need for the teacher to always keep up with who needs to pitch and who needs to present.  They can simply do so on Flipgrid whenever they are ready instead of waiting for a time in class that works for everyone.  

Using Flipgrid also gives everyone an opportunity to respond and give feedback on Genius Hour projects.  It allows us to share pitches and presentations beyond the walls of the classroom, giving students an authentic audience.  

In my classroom, the QR codes on the image above linked to the website that walked them through what to do for each of the 6 P's.  I had to create a website, add all of the content, and then link the QR code to the different pages within the website.  Using Flipgrid, you can simply put all of this information in the Grid by clicking Actions, Share Topic, and choosing QR code.  Copy the QR code, paste it onto cardstock, create the bulletin board, and it's done!  Crazy cool!

I cannot express how excited I am about sharing this.  Please let me know if you have any questions.  Every student deserves an opportunity to pursue their passion and Flipgrid makes Genius Hour even more manageable for teachers and more meaningful for students.  

If you'd like to know more about Genius Hour, please feel free to check out my book, Genius Hour: Passion Projects that Ignite Innovation and Student Inquiry.

Want to learn even MORE about the 6 Ps of Genius Hour?  Check out the ONLINE COURSE!


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