Leveraging Flip (Flipgrid) for Your Online Classrooms

Leveraging Flip (Flipgrid) for Your Online Classrooms
The Editorial Team November 30, 2023

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In this increasingly digital age, more teachers are choosing features such as ZoomGoogle Classroom, and Outschool as a medium of instruction over the traditional classroom setting. As a result, the method of student engagement and participation changes. That’s where Flipgrid (currently known as Flip) can be a tremendous asset.

What is Flipgrid?

Flipgrid (now known as Flip) is a free web and mobile app developed by Microsoft. It allows educators to create safe, online groups where students can share their ideas asynchronously through brief videos, text notes, or audio messages. Participants don’t engage in real-time or simultaneous exchanges. Instead, there’s a time delay between the sending and receiving of messages, allowing individuals to participate at their own convenience.

How does Flipgrid benefit online teaching?

As an interactive video discussion platform that facilitates asynchronous video conversations, it is commonly used in educational settings to enhance student engagement, collaboration, and communication. The pressure of composing an instant thoughtful response or accurate answer is removed, as students can take time to compile the information without having all eyes and attention focused on them.

Here are some key features and benefits of Flipgrid:

Asynchronous communication

Participants can contribute to discussions at their own pace. This flexibility is particularly valuable for online or blended learning environments where students aren’t all on the platform at the same time. You present the course material, and your students access it as soon as they’re able, then respond in whatever format is permitted.

Video responses

Flipgrid allows students to respond to prompts using short video clips they record themselves. This enables a more dynamic and personal form of communication compared to auditory or text-based responses. You can pose the question to the group as a whole, then set a time limit on student response to ensure accountability and time management.

Creative expression

Students can utilize various tools within the platform, such as filters, stickers, and drawing tools, to enhance their video responses. Flipgrid welcomes features of text messaging and social media interaction to bring out the best in your students. When they may truly be themselves, they are more likely to engage and participate, contributing in a manner that reflects and showcases their uniqueness.

Engagement and community building

A downside of online teaching is the disconnect students and teachers often feel due to the distance and separation. With Flipgrid, the use of video responses encourages freedom of expression and adds a personal touch to discussions, fostering a sense of community and enhancing engagement among participants. Students can engage with each other through their interaction with a peer’s responses, which can lead to an active discussion or even a debate.

Global connections

Teaching online has taken instruction from the confines of a single classroom and unleashed access to the worldwide stage. In addition to you sharing your own knowledge, Flipgrid enables connections beyond the classroom, allowing you to create and join global communities. Students from around the world engage with you and each other, fostering a sense of connection with peers across diverse cultures and nations.

Privacy and security

Flipgrid provides settings for you to control who can access and contribute to discussions. This ensures a safe and controlled environment for communication.

Online learning can sometimes be a passive experience, especially if the presentation is solely in lecture format. Flipgrid transforms traditional discussions into interactive and multimedia-rich conversations, encouraging increased participation. It has gained popularity in educational settings for its user-friendly interface and ability to enhance student voice and collaboration.

How Flipgrid enables teachers to make online teaching easier

In addition to the basic aspects of Flipgrid, you can also access enhanced features to integrate the application with your existing workflow, such as Canvas, Schoology, Microsoft Teams, and Google Classroom. You can access the settings or account options from within your educator account. From there, you’ll navigate to the apps section, select the system you’re using, and authorize the integration. In some instances, you may have to grant permissions for data sharing between the two platforms.

Assignment setup

Once integrated, you can set up Flipgrid assignments or topics directly within your learning management system (LMS). You can also share links and embed codes with your students, creating a seamless presentation that encourages participation in discussions.

Grading and feedback

Sometimes, you can transfer grades and feedback between Flipgrid and your LMS. You can also communicate with your students through your preferred LMS and instruct them on where to find assignments, how to submit video responses, and any other relevant details. Once students submit their work, you can use Flipgrid for a formative assessment of understanding and track the progress of individual students or the class.

Grids and topics

The entire concept of Flipgrid lies in the application’s foundation. Course discussions are organized into Grids, which each represent a specific class, project, or topic. Much like a message forum, the content is organized and structured, allowing students to flip between grids as they categorize their video, text, and audio responses in the corresponding areas.

Accessibility and inclusivity

Some learners require modifications or accommodations to be successful. Flipgrid provides features such as closed captioning to enhance accessibility for deaf and hard-of-hearing students, and it also aids learners who are more visual than auditory in their learning style. This ensures participants with diverse learning needs can effectively engage in discussions.

Flipgrid tips, tricks, and strategies

With increased engagement often comes the discovery of a workaround or modification to enhance the existing application experience. Some of these include:

  • Customization—incorporating emojis, stickers, and creative annotations using the drawing tools available in Flipgrid
  • Filters and effects—adding a touch of creativity and engagement to video responses
  • Emoji reactions—creating a visual and expressive element in responses
  • Platform integration—streamlining access for students
  • Flipgrid shorts—using camera mode for quick, on-the-go video recording, enabling spontaneous and brief responses
  • Collaboration—creating joint video responses and engaging in collaborative projects

Mastery equips educators and learners with a powerful toolkit, fostering engagement, creativity, and seamless interaction in the digital learning environment. These insights empower users to create dynamic, interactive, and inclusive educational experiences.

Flipgrid examples to improve efficiency

To better showcase how other educators have put Flipgrid to use, here are three examples from real-world settings:

  1. Austin Kaufmann, an ESL Instructor and Ed Tech Specialist at Michigan State University, provides a few examples of how he has modified the Flipgrid platform to enhance the overall experience and customize how he engages with his students.
  2. Joe and Kristen Merrill are elementary school teachers and Certified Flipgrid Educators. They love finding ways to engage students and reach them in creative ways. On their blog, they share a few ways they’ve changed Flipgrid and invite others to share their tips as well.
  3. Greg Kulowiec is the Technology Director at Triton Regional Schools and has leveraged Flipgrid to create individual student portfolios. When he shared his post, it gained a lot of traction.

The biggest appeal of Flipgrid (Flip) is that anyone can use it. The more you use Flipgrid, the more features you’ll likely discover. With its impressive functionality and a user-friendly mobile app, Flipgrid has become one of the most popular apps integrated with online instruction.

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