Thursday, July 5, 2012

English Flippers Summit Announced

The date has been set for Tuesday, July 10 at 8 pm Eastern.

I'm seeing a need and now I'm trying to fill it......
At last year's (2011) Flipped Class Conference, I met 3 English teachers out of approx. 150 attendees. So, this entire past school year, I have been searching for English teachers using a flipped model in their classroom and haven't found many at all (probably less than 10). That doesn't mean they aren't out there. They just weren't active in blogging or tweeting or presenting, etc where I could find them. I envied the math and science teachers that could collaborate on videos, bounce specific ideas off each other, and commiserate together. I took what I could from the math and science folks and customized it to my class. But, when I would turn to them for some very specific implementation advice, I commonly heard, "Well, I really don't know much about English....." Not that they wouldn't help me, they just didn't have the experience to help me in that situation.

At NCTE in November, I searched and searched for English flippers again and blogged about it. There were no sessions on flipping. I heard one presenter mention that she was planning to flip her class during her presentation. Everyone I talked to or tweeted during NCTE gave me one of three responses: "ummm....what's flipping?", "I like the concept behind flipping, I just haven't done it and am not sure where to start", or "you can't flip an English class." I'm oversimplifying their responses, but that is mainly what I got.

Then came this summer....
I presented at the Flipped Class Conference (2012). There were 300+ attendees. My session was one of the first sessions after the opening keynote. There were approx. 40 people in my session and I asked how many were English teachers. About 30 hands went up!

In addition, many people began actively tweeting about being or becoming an English flipper. Cheryl Morris, Erica Speaks, Carrie Ross, and Andrew Thomasson are just a few of the tweeps starting to come out. In true flip fashion, it appeared a grassroots movement was taking off.

In private conversations with all these different individuals, it appeared to me that since this English flippers movement was growing, we could benefit from a common direction. We all had a lot of the same questions and were piecing together answers. I was thinking during a morning run one day, "Wouldn't it be great if we could get all the current and new English flippers together and discuss our common concerns, questions, and intentions?" Then, it hit me.....through the power of the internet, we could.

So, introducing the first English Flippers Summit (if you have a better name, do share). I crowd-sourced the idea at ISTE12 and decided to try an open webinar. The date has been set for Tuesday, July 10 at 8 pm Eastern. The summit can be found here (I will tweet out the link closer to the date as a reminder). We will cap it at 1 hour. If we are still going strong at 1 hour, we'll plan another one. I want this summit to be an opportunity to "meet" each other and generate some English flipped dialogue. Where it goes, I do not know. I don't know if we'll solve anything or if we even need to solve anything. But, with so many new English flippers out there, it would be nice to connect with resources. It's free. If it turns out to be worthless, it will only take an hour of your day.

Stacy Roshan told me once, as a math teacher, she used to walk by English classrooms and envy those teachers because of the exciting activities they could do in their classrooms. Because of the flip, that has flipped (pun intended). Let's figure out a way to make those math and science teachers envy us again!


  1. I am looking forward to this. Thank you!!!

  2. Thanks for the summit! I'm very interested in ideas for flipping the English classroom! I think part of the issue for English teachers is that the curriculum isn't standardized like say an Algebra I class or a Biology class-- nor should it be with the amount of literature out there! Yes, there are classes that focus on genre/time period, and even though the skills of reading/writing are universal, each approach to a novel is novel in itself. No 2 teachers teach a novel the same way. My classroom is based on cooperative learning that is student-centered with me as facilitator, following aspects of M. Hunter. Even though I've been teaching for 13 years, I JUST started blogging (of course at the end of the year when all I have to write about are ideas and reflections from past years), but feel free to check me out: and I'm on twitter as @kakersbakers2