Welcome to day eleven of the 2021 #AppventCalendar! Today’s guest author is none other than the brilliant @Lanny_Watkins. His worthy suggestion today is Flipgrid Live Events. Read more about what they are and why he chose them for today’s entry below!
This time of year, children across the world will be writing (if they haven’t already done so) their Christmas wish lists. But, if you were asked to write a wish list of what you would want your pupils to become, I wonder what you would wish for them? A continuing thirst for learning? Well informed, supportive, empathetic community members? Creative, innovative problem solvers? As teachers, we wish for all of these. But how can we nurture these? Many of these grow from a spark of inspiration that often doesn’t come from the teacher, but from another source. One such source is something that every teacher should keep in their “edtech tool kit” – Flipgrid Live Events.
Over the last few years Flipgrid, the social learning video platform has grown from strength to strength – enabling pupils from across the world to find their voices and become confident in using them. It has promoted and facilitated global connections, allowing pupils to learn about and embrace cultural differences. Flipgrid played a huge part in facilitating hybrid learning and encouraging creativity in our pupils. But what exactly is Flipgrid Live Events?
Many classes will fondly remember the wonderful virtual field trips that were offered through Skype in The Classroom. The rich learning experiences where pupils felt that they had travelled to and visited zoos and museums in parts of the world that would be out of reach for them, impacted learning and nurtured the development of global citizenship. Guest speakers were available to help enhance and enrich the work of their pupils through their kind words of encouragement and advice. Whilst that platform is no longer available these ‘learning partners’, and more, are now working with Flipgrid to continue these global learning experiences.
With regularly, well-advertised events, Flipgrid Live events take place on Wednesday’s at 10 am PST (6 pm GMT) and normally last about 30 to 45 minutes. Hosted through Teams, on sign up a link is provided which will allow you to access the live event (no account is required). Attendees are encouraged to engage with the hosts through the moderated chat. Questions can be asked, and hosts try hard to answer as many as they can. Attendees will share where they are from and you quickly realise that you are part of a ‘global classroom’ for this session.
This year has seen some amazing events. Highlights have included “Learn How Change Sings Inside Us All” with Amanda Gorman and Loren Long, “Diving into the World of Mythology” with Rick Riordan (author of Percy Jackson series), “Bringing real stories to life” with Chelsea Clinton, Arctic Adventure (Women in Northern Research) and Celebrating International Dot Day with author Peter H. Reynolds. These are only a few, mixed in among museums, national parks, seas and oceans, zoo’s, scientists and more.
But more than just having a 30min live session, these partners have produced additional learning/lesson resources that can be easily found in Flipgrid Discovery – all completely free!
As these are live, you may be looking at the time and thinking “that doesn’t suit us, it’s outside of school hours”. You don’t need to miss out! All events are recorded and posted to the Flipgrid Live Events Playlist on the Flipgrid YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/flipgrid) once the event has finished streaming. Although it will lack the interactive opportunity the rich content is still there. But why not use these events as a homework task? Register and share the link with pupils and encourage family learning (it’s something we had done as a family and have had great enjoyment from it). A great opportunity for families to do an activity together – and when pupils return to school the following day spend some time discussing what you learnt. You never know, these events could be the spark of inspiration that will change the course of the child’s life, enabling them to become that person we wish for them to be.