To flip or not to flip, that is the question. The concept of the "flipped classroom" - where "homework" is done in class and class work is done at home - has been around for a few years and, thanks to advances in video technology and gradually shifting attitudes towards independent learning and technology, is now emerging as a viable alternative to the status quo.

The flipped classroom is particularly exciting because it require students to take preparation more seriously and become increasingly active in class; it also requires teaching staff to shift their attitudes so that class time is a place for conversation rather than lecture. And above all, it leverages new technologies (particularly video) in order to facilitate preparation in an engaging way that truly changes students' attitudes and motivation towards preparing for classes.

Daniel Edwards (read: @headguruteacher) was absolutely correct when he argued that too often we misjudge the impact of our work relative to the effort we have put in. He is right to focus on curriculum, timetabling, performance management and assessment 'overkill'; these all offer plenty of inefficiency and I fully agree that you really can have too much data.  

This last is quite a statement and I know that in the past I have been known as a full on data fiend. It was, however, appropriate to its' context. I had started at a school in Special Measures and data in English was all but non-existent. What there was lacked rigour and too many pupils were able to slip through the net. This situation demanded a focused approach to gathering, interpreting and using data; the investment in time into this collation of data was appropriate, because the department was now able to monitor, support and improve the learning of pupils.  

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