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Hi everyone! My name is Frank Stonehouse. I’m originally from Detroit, Michigan (But, for my own protection, I usually lie and say I’m from Toronto). I am currently working as an English professor in both Professional and Prepa Divisions at ITESM in Morelia, Mexico, where I have been teaching since 2009.

I consider myself an amateur video-maker. I have been tinkering around with my own progressive Internet talk program called The Frankly Speaking Show. It’s got a long way to go … “poco-a-poco,” as they say.

I’m also an animal-lover, Apple fanboy, vegetarian, iPhoneography buff, virtual worlds enthusiast, freethinker, and wannabe writer. I enjoy participating in online courses/MOOCs, and I’ve had the privilege of being in one of Ken Bauer’s face-to-face flipped workshops earlier this year. He looks funnier upside-down.

Frank Stonehouse (ITESM, Morelia)

Flipped by Frank (Unit-0 post)

Flipped by Frank (Unit-0 post)

When you flip your kids, their brains fill with creativity (and blood, obviously!...)!

What do I hope to get out of this course? What are my expectations?

I’d like for all of us to have fun, and, after that, I anticipate that we will:

  • learn how to develop and implement asynchronous & synchronous online lessons
  • pick up some technology tools to engage students in a relevant way
  • connect what we learn to reliable formative assessment and evaluation
  • incorporate devices, smartphone & tablets into flipped lessons
  • explore what it is that teachers do in the classroom versus the LMS
  • discuss how to balance blended learning to include all students (left- and right-brained)
  • examine how to protect material published so that the creator can always share (and not give that up)

Those are my straw-man expectations. Other than that, I am really looking forward to freshening up my approach to lesson planning by getting students more emotionally engaged in my courses. I think this is crticial because many students have been learning English for many years now, since preschool even. Many have had bad experiences with learning English or are just burnt out on the topic. So, I need to bring these students back into being excited about learning a language. 

Students these days are now more into "chunking" smaller pieces of information. How can we as teachers chunk our lessons so that students find them more accessible and relevant to their contexts? 

Having said all this, I do know that some students, especially those that are more left-brained predominant, still process learning better with lecture-style formats. How can we not leave these students behind ... even if they are a growing minority?

One of my fears include keeping up with technology. It always changing and moving forward faster than the speed of light (OK, faster than the speed of Frank). One day students are into this app and the next day into that app. Students nowadays get bored quickly are and much more demanding than in the past. However, some studies show that multitasking and jumping from one thing to another is not all that productive. Where and how do we find balance by not getting caught up in using technology just to appease students, but rather to use technology to engage students effectively while also keenly serving pedagogy?

Fondness for summative evaluation is not my forte, I must admit. So, I'd like to find effective ways to connect formative evaluation and assessment with all this new stuff that we will learn. I am sure that many of us are somewhat tired of "bitácoras" and overly-detailed rubrics. End-of-period grades don't always reflect a student's learning. I think formative assessment is more effective. So maybe developing some good checklists and other tools to aid formative feeback processes would help a lot to be a better teacher. Formative processes are more important than summative in my mind. However, were are still more enslaved by quatititative evaluation, pushing numbers. How do we break away from that?

Looking forward to the Flipped Learning course. Thanks Ken and other participants! I encourage everyone to drop a comment here at my blog (Spanish or English).