Let’s begin with this…

Flipgrid.

Is.

Awesome.

Not sure what I’m talking about? No problem. Just flip that frown upside down, and we will flippantly say you were off the grid for a while.

Seriously, though, folks, the only necessary ingredient to launch this amazing educational technology into the stratosphere is your imagination. Yep. In fact, Flipgrid can only be grounded by trite and traditional assignments that limit students’ creativity by asking them to simply speak about their Flipgrid topics.

No, no, no. You see, tiny cameras via Chromebooks and smartphones in the hands of today’s students can be magical. Armed with a meaningful assignment and the freedom of creative expression, students can create an engaging, rigorous, and oftentimes entertaining platform that possesses the potential to morph into an all-encompassing topic with an infinite audience.

Sound pretty powerful? Indeed, it is.

So, before we take a look at a Flipgrid-integrated lesson that invites creativity, let’s peruse some alternative ideas for Flipgrid. (Warning: Many of the following educators are NOT professional actors, musicians, and artists).

  • Parody
  • SnapChat Filter
  • Long-distance visitor via FaceTime
  • Movie Trailer
  • Musical Performance
  • Three-Headed Broadway Star (inspired by Whose Line Is It Anyway?)
  • Interpreter (inspired by Key and Peele)
  • Dramatic Reading
  • Silhouette
  • Statue/Tableau
  • News Reporter/Interview
  • Science Experiment
  • Talk Show
  • ABC Conversation (inspired by Whose Line Is It Anyway?)
  • Math Problem
  • Artwork
  • Ted Talk (speech)
  • Storyboard of historical events, literature, etc. by piecing all teams’ presentations together into one, fluid “story” (inspired by Molly Pierson)
  • Showcased Best Practices for Educators

Why Flipgrid?

A good friend and colleague of mine, Micah Hoyt, has always said, “If we can just get students talking about the subject matter, the standards, and the solutions…” Of course, we know how this statement ends. It ends with students learning. Flipgrid offers these students an engaging and reliable platform to express their knowledge, questions, and creativity, while also practicing soft-skills like self-confidence, respectful disagreement, punctuality with their responses, constructive criticism, and positivity. Of course, let us not forget that social fears are number one on most people’s list. Wouldn’t Flipgrid be a safe and engaging way to slowly guide students into the realm of self-expression and public speaking? Absolutely.

A Flipgrid-Integrated Lesson

So, go ahead and have your students practice a second language, address a prompt, delve into a discussion, or solve a complex problem by simply speaking into Flipgrid. No doubt it will work. However, if you find your students getting a little bored with played-out assignments that merely ask students to speak into their webcams, just invite them to the next level by transforming the traditional into amazing with these alternative tasks. You never know. They may totally astonish you and ultimately leave you as the one who is flipped out.

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