Blog 2: In pursuit of that ‘flippable’ moment.

Screen Shot 2015-10-15 at 4.01.02 PMNext week in my senior-level journalism class, I’m going to try something new.

New to me as an instructor and new to my students.

We’re in the middle of our ‘police reporting’ section, and we’re starting to get into the meaty topic of how cops actually do their jobs.

But instead of me just telling my class about various roles police officers play in their careers and the techniques they use while doing their jobs, I’m gong to show them.

Or, better yet — they’re going to show themselves.

I have this fascinating video of police interrogating a homicide suspect an interview room at a local police station.

It’s insightful because it shows in vivid detail how detectives use extremely simple psychological techniques to get a person to talk to them.

Tricks (I use this term in the practical, not pejorative sense) like taking away physical space to establish control and the use of language to ‘telegraph’ certain outcomes without overtly stating them.

The problem is that if I were to show it in class (it’s about 30 minutes long) — a lot of the nuances would likely go over the heads of people unfamiliar with materials like this and there’s not a lot of time to stop, rewind, pause and reflect.

At least that’s what happened last time I taught this particular material in a lecture style format.

These things can really go in one ear and out the next unless you see how it happens.

So, thanks to some advice from this piece on looking for opportunities to “flip” a classroom, students will have a chance to watch the footage on their own time — with some prior instructions on what to look for, on slowing it down, rewinding and to focusing their attention closely on the actions and words of the detectives, not the suspect.

Then, when we’re together as a class, we can dissect a little further. See who noticed what and start questioning why events unfolded in that room the way they did.

I believe it may just put a quick stop to any confusion and wasted class time dealing with the one or two students bound to struggle with the material and its purpose.


Blog 2: In pursuit of that ‘flippable’ moment.

2 thoughts on “Blog 2: In pursuit of that ‘flippable’ moment.

  1. ebrownorama says:

    Hi James,
    This is an excellent approach to provide your students with deeper learning. They will now have to take responsibility for their learning. Has this lesson been completed already? I’d love to hear about student reactions and their discussions.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s