Being a private school teacher, I often get, “oh, you probably have to deal with difficult parents.” And my response is usually: Honestly, I am very fortunate to have such involved, interested parents to team with. Building the trust of parents at the beginning of the year can be critical. In my experience, parents just want to know that their child is going to be in a class where the teacher genuinely cares about their son/daughter as an individual. Being at a private school, personalizing the learning experience is particularly important.
When I began flipping my AP Calculus AB classes, I honestly had very few questions from parents. I think it was a combination of the fact that: 1. parents are a bit more hands-off with juniors/seniors and 2. the students previous math class had been challenging enough for them to, at times, feel lost on some homework assignments. When I flipped AP Calculus AB, I found students so excited to be able to do the problem solving in the classroom. This message went home to parents, students were doing an excellent job with the class format, and honestly things went really smoothly — from year 1.
I cannot say the same about the first month of Honors Algebra 2, even though by the end of the year, things were absolutely awesome. But it took 1-2 months to turn things around, and a lot of time and effort on my part at the beginning of the year. From this experience, I learned a lot about the importance of communication and building relationships.
A #FlipClass Welcome – My Back-to-School Night Video