Wednesday, October 1, 2014


WSQ - It stands for "Watch-Summarize-Question" and it's the idea/method/thing I came up with way back in January 2012 when I was brainstorming to find a way to hold my students accountable for actually watching the video lessons and coming to class ready with questions and to apply their knowledge.  I've always pronounced it "Wisk", like the kitchen gadget you mix pancake batter up with.  I think I may be adding something to it to make it a little more phonetic...

Jon Bergmann had a great blog post a while back called "How changing one word in the flipped class changes everything" .  Students can't just be told to go home and "watch" a video - they need to go home and "interact" with the video.

So, I'm thinking that

Watch-Summarize-Question (WSQ)

should now be

Watch (interact) - Summarize - Question (WiSQ)

Ok, maybe I don't need to go back and change every single time I've written the acronym WSQ and change it to WiSQ, but it is a good thing to think about.  When I talk to students about "watching" a video, my definition of it for them includes being engaged and interactive with the video.  I use the acronym "Be F.I.T. and Check your T.E.C.H." (modified from my FITCH with some ideas from Lisa Light), which stands for:

Be FIT when watching videos for education, not entertainment
Have a Focused, serious attitude
Be Involved in the process
Take away distractions, check your T.E.C.H.
(Tabs closed, Electronic devices put away, Cell phones- don't answer them, Headphones in)
(acronym developed collaboratively with Mrs. Lisa Light)

Being involved in the process means taking notes, pausing/rewinding (although yes, I know, you don't actually "rewind" a digital video, but the phrase still makes sense, at least to my students), answering questions posed, trying problems when asked, thinking of their own questions and confusion and jotting them down, etc.

I was in a Google Hangout for a MOOC through UCI that Chris Long is facilitating where we talked with Jon Bergmann a little bit about this.  You can see the Hangout on Air here.

Writing this post makes me a little nostalgic for having my own classroom and working with my students in developing the skills to effectively learning from video lessons - and being a part of the exciting, dynamic, engaging in class discussions and activities that resulted from that.  I'm hoping that I will be able to help some of the teachers at my new site to begin adopting a flipped learning mindset and utilize the tools and strategies I developed for my own classroom find success in theirs.  Only time will tell...

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