Learning Strategies

What is Flipped Learning?

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In simplistic terms, flipped learning can be described as "school work at home and home work at school".

Teachers who employ flipped learning seek to reverse the traditional classroom model by delivering lecture materials outside the classroom (often via video or podcast), while repurposing in-class time for more active learning strategies. These strategies can include small group work, class discussion, speech presentation, hands-on activities or lab experiments.

There is no one way to flip a classroom. The goal is to simply use in-class time as a workshop, where students can collaborate on projects, freely discuss topics and test their knowledge on the materials they studied outside the classroom. During this time the teacher acts as a coach, monitoring progress, encouraging collaboration and clarifying content.

Why choose a flipped learning model?

  • Students become active participants in the learning process.

    In a traditional classroom model, students are passive participants, merely absorbing classroom or lecture material. There is often not enough time to stop and ask questions or discuss content. In a flipped model, however, lecture materials are posted online and made accessible 24/7. Thus, students have time to learn at their own pace, jot down any questions they may have before class, and refer to the material again and again. This method prevents students who may need more time to understand concepts from getting left behind as well.

  • Students master material.

    In a traditional classroom, content is often quickly covered - not mastered. In a flipped model, however, students have the time to work collaboratively, ask questions and host in-depth discussions. Teachers can quickly identify and correct errors in thinking, and generally have more time for one-on-one interaction. This engagement ultimately leads to a deeper understanding of concepts and a better mastery of skills.

  • Increases flexibility.

    Because lecture or instructional materials are posted online and available 24/7, it's easy for students (and teachers) who miss class due to illness, family emergencies, vacations and the like to catch up quickly. Constant access to content negates the need for make-up assignments as well.

  • Increases student confidence.

    In a flipped classroom, students are given the time and space to master new material, and, through active learning strategies, take responsibility for their own learning and success. This ideally increases academic achievement and builds self-confidence. When students feel confident, they're more likely to embrace future challenges and opportunities.

How can I design a classroom that supports flipped learning?

A classroom designed for flipped learning is ready to support in-person active learning, whether it’s hands-on activities, group work or lab experiments.

Activity tables with easy-to-clean laminate tops offer plenty of space for active learning. Choose tables with locking casters to make any necessary rearrangements between lessons a cinch. Consider whiteboard tabletops, which support students’ impromptu brainstorming and help eliminate the need for paper.

Spacious mobile computer tables are a great option for tech-centric activities. Most computer tables feature tops that flip down for efficient storage and grommets to keep cords and wires organized.

Add adaptable classroom seating that can support sitting or standing throughout hands-on activities to keep students comfortable. For example, this sit-to-stand stool features a pivot-style seat that allows students to twist, rock and swivel without disturbing others. This type of flexible seating can help keep even the most fidgety students engaged.

Whiteboard easels are great for group work. Lightweight and portable, whiteboard easels provide a shared surface for brainstorming or displaying project material.

For more ideas on how you can outfit a classroom that supports a flipped learning curriculum, check out our collection of proven flipped learning classroom designs.

Have questions? We’re here to help! Our experts are available by phone at 1-800-260-2776. You can also get personalized assistance through our or by emailing us. We’re available Monday-Friday, 8am-7pm.


Acedo, Mike. "10 Pros And Cons Of A Flipped Classroom." Teachthought. 27 Nov. 2013. Web. http://www.teachthought.com/learning/blended-flipped-learning/10-pros-cons-flipped-classroom/

Sams, A. Bergmann, J., Daniels, K., Bennett, B., Marshall, H., & Arfstrom, Kari. "What is Flipped Learning?" Flipped Learning Network. 2014. Web. https://flippedlearning.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/FLIP_handout_FNL_Web.pdf

"7 Things You Should Know About Flipped Classrooms." Educause. 7 Feb. 2012. Web. https://library.educause.edu/resources/2012/2/7-things-you-should-know-about-flipped-classrooms

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