Introducing the All-New Flipgrid 🚀

We are pretty lucky. The Flipgrid community is made up of innovative and inspiring educators who help us make Flipgrid better every day. We’re listening... and have built the all-new Flipgrid specifically for you, your students, their families, and your communities. 

Here is a livestream archive of our rocking launch event on 8.10.17 at Flipgrid HQ in Minneapolis!

We have three objectives with this update:

  1. Empower you with more capabilities to make the perfect environment for your students. 
  2. Simplify the management of your Flipgrid discussions. 
  3. Keep Flipgrid familiar for you and your students.

So what’s new?

Well, pretty much everything! We redesigned Flipgrid to add power and increase efficiency, all without sacrificing simplicity. 

We built the all-new Flipgrid for the amazing #FlipgridFever community and we’ve only just begun. When you have ideas for us, don’t be a stranger: hello@flipgrid.com

The All-New Flipgrid: For You

You asked for new Flipgrid capabilities. We wanted to make it even easier for you to encourage, engage, and give feedback to your students. So, we did both. More capability. Less effort. What’s not to love?

Sparking a discussion

Topics are now more powerful than ever. Record and upload video prompts. Embed YouTube and Vimeo videos. Upload an image for your students to discuss. Or, add a little fun with a GIF or emoji!

You can also now add links or document attachments to provide extra context.

Let students take the lead and recognize their impact by Sparking a student response into its own topic. 

Bonus Updates: 

  • Scaffold your semester in advance by setting the date when your topic becomes visible and when they freeze. 
  • Challenge your students to be concise with 15 second video limits. Classroom users can tackle more complex topics with the new 5 minute video response limit.

Managing your content

We’ve redesigned the Flipgrid Teacher Admin and Dashboard. Your Dashboard is now the place for you to see your students’ activity at-a-glance, quickly catch up on unviewed videos, and show off all your achievements!

Watching videos from within your Teacher Admin is also easier than ever with QuickView. Provide feedback, watch replies, share, and navigate between videos with a single click. 

Speaking of feedback and assessment: we’ve made standard feedback available to ALL Flipgrid educators while Classroom accounts now have the ability to add custom rubrics!

Sharing with community

We’ve made it easier than ever to share your grids, topics, and responses as well as manage their visibility, right from the main view in your Teacher Admin.

Want to share a student’s video with his/her family without providing access to other students’ videos? Use a private share link. Recipients can download the video, view the topic prompt, and share it with anyone they want, all without sacrificing the privacy of your class discussion!

Moderation allows you to privately review a video before it is posted. We moved moderation from the Grid to Topic level, so you can have both moderated and unmoderated content within every Flipgrid community.

The All-New Flipgrid: For Your Community

We’ve made Flipgrid more powerful and fun for your learning community without sacrificing your control.

Sharing their voice

Students can now add a title with searchable hashtags to their video response, add a link to an article, website, PDF, etc, or express their creativity by adding stickers and drawing on their selfie!

Learning together

Use an expanded set of Reactions including several new emojis, from the standard Flipgrid Like to the Ambassador-requested Mic Drop!

Bonus: Access Grids using QR codes. Flipgrid mobile apps now have a built in QR reader, making it easier than ever for students to participate.

The All-New Flipgrid: Integrations

Flipgrid works great on its own, and now brings amplified student voice to your Microsoft and Canvas classes too. 

Microsoft

  • Embed fully-functional Grids and Topics into MS Teams
  • Allow students to showcase all their work by embedding Flipgrid Responses in OneNote.
  • Educators can also embed Grid and Topic cards for a quick and easy reference to Flipgrid from OneNote! 

Canvas

  • Control access to your Grids and Topics through your Canvas student roster.
  • Assign Flipgrid participation within Canvas.
  • Coming soon: SpeedGrader integration and custom Flipgrid editor buttons for Canvas pages, discussions, and announcements.

The All-New Flipgrid: Better Together

The all-new Flipgrid was built to reflect the goals of our amazing global educator community. This is just the beginning. Thank you for your support, advice, and friendship.

-Team Flipgrid

Back-to-School Intro Challenge 🎓

How does your school engage the parents and families in your community? If you’re Spring Lake Park school district in Minnesota, you use Flipgrid!

Spring Lake Park created a grid for their district and a topic for each school. Within those topics, they had every teacher, admin, and staff member post an intro video which they then shared with their community. It required only a few minutes for each teacher to post and it allowed the community as a whole to see their passion for educating students.

See the Spring Lake Park grid here: flipgrid.com/slp2016

See the Spring Lake Park grid here: flipgrid.com/slp2016

This year we're challenging you to take part in the #FlipgridBack2School challenge. Here's what you'll need to do.

1. Get your administration on board with the project. Show them the SLP grid!

2. Create a grid for your district and post a topic for each school. Or, create a grid for your school and post a topic for each department or grade level!

3. Ask each teacher to post a video introduction. Feature your principal’s video as an introduction to the school! (If you are a Flipgrid Classroom user, turn on Replies and let your students' families and the community say 'hello').

4. Email us at hello@flipgrid.com once every educator has recorded to let us know!

Once you create a grid for your school and get every teacher to post, we’ll hook you up with a free one-year Flipgrid Classroom subscription ($65 value). Already have Flipgrid Classroom? We’ll extend your subscription a year. If you create a grid for your district and get every teacher to post, you’ll get a free 5-pack of Flipgrid Classroom subscriptions to share with your colleagues or PLN ($200 value)!

Building Community on the First Day of School

The following is a guest post from Flipgrid Ambassador Kristin Merrill. Kristin works as a fourth grade language arts teacher with the Collier County school district in Naples, Florida. Over the past ten years she has worked on developing her teaching into a model that fits all learners as she strives to digitally differentiate. Connect with her on Twitter @FriendsinFourth.

I was recently asked why there is so much #FlipgridFever and if I really thought it was going to “burn” for awhile. How can it truly be integrated in an academic way? Did I really see myself using this tool daily in the classroom? The answer was an immediate — YES!

What makes this platform so appealing is its versatility and simplicity. It is applicable in almost every grade and subject area and can be used by students of all ages. Flipgrid can be utilized in a 1:1 classroom or in a room with one lone teacher device. This tool gives students the opportunity to share their voice and once they see how easy it is they aren’t going to want to stop!

Since becoming an ambassador, one of the most frequently asked questions I hear is how can Flipgrid be introduced to students and what is the best way to do so. I say unleash the student voice on the first day of school!

16 Ways to Use Flipgrid On the First Day of School.

  1. Favorite Summer Memory: Talking about what you did over the summer is a perfect way to get students talking. Students can share what they did, then watch videos from fellow classmates and comment with personal connections they have.

  2. Admin Introductions:  On the first day of school the day seems to fly by and there is little time for meeting others outside of the classroom. For students new to the school, the more familiar faces are the more comfortable they become. Create a grid and allow teachers, cafeteria staff, librarians, art, music and PE teachers to all introduce themselves. You could watch it while students come in, during transitions or at the end of the day after you pack up. Take it even further, and you could have your students record replies to them explaining what they are looking forward to learning or doing with them in the upcoming year. **

  3. Goal Setting:  Students come in to a new class excited about the year ahead. Some have big plans and allowing students the time to set goals is a meaningful way to get them thinking about what they want to accomplish. It is also a topic that can be revisited throughout the year with “updates” recorded by the students in regards to the goals they set and if they have any new ones! As you have students update their goals you can send home to parents as an update.

  4. Guess Who All About Me: If you work with older students, allow them to have some fun on the first day with a little #appsmashing. Students record introduction videos using apps like Snapchat, Chatterpix, Apple Clips, etc. where they do not show their face or use their voice. They can even identify themselves to their video with a #nickname instead of using their own name.  Classmates then try and guess who made each video. This a nice way to introduce each other without making those camera shy kids nervous on day one.

  5. Two Truths and a Lie: Put those surveys down and hide the BINGO boards — get students sharing and talking on the first day with this fun game. Students brainstorm a list of three facts about themselves and record the video. Two of the facts are true and one is made up. Classmates can respond to their peers’ videos and try to guess which of the three “facts” is the made up one!

  6. Summer Reading Talk: Hopefully students read over the summer and you could have them respond with books they read while out of the classroom. Some districts (like mine!) require certain students to all read the same book over the summer. This would be an easy way to get them talking while integrating a core subject area.

  7. Question of the Day: Start what could be a daily or weekly routine in class by posing a question to the class and allowing them time to record and respond after reflecting.

  8. Classroom Rules: As teachers we often spend time during the first days and weeks setting up a classroom environment where students feel safe and included. But, It's important for our students to have a say in their learning environment as well. With Flipgrid, students could respond with rules or criteria they want that can later be discussed or voted on.

  9. I Wish You Knew: This spin on the ordinary introductions gives students the chance to express something that they wish the teacher/classmate knew about them. This is an easy way to have students share something special or positive about themselves.

  10. One Word Summary: Give students times to brainstorm and then they give one word they would when describing how they learn. They can explain their choice while introducing themselves in the process.  

  11. Show and Tell:  Students get a chance to record something that they want to share with the class. This can be an object from home, a special talent, memory, story or simply something fun and unique about themselves. This can extend to home or throughout the week.

  12. Family introductions: If you are looking for a way to get parents involved, send students home with the job of introducing their family to the class. “Family” can include pets, extended family, whomever the child is living with at home. Parents can see their child engaged and get to participate themselves while classmates can learn a little more about their peers!

  13. Phone a Friend: Students record videos asking questions to the classmates from last year. (Eg. New fourth graders asking now fifth graders questions) Students ask the outgoing class questions about the teacher, expectations and content covered. Great way to get more classes in the building familiar with Flipgrid and also helps build familiarity within the student body. **

  14. Find Someone Who... : Students pose a question and other students respond if they fall into that category. This is an easy way for students to start making connections to others while learning about each other. **

  15. Global Goals: There are many organizations teachers can connect with in regards to thinking globally. Maybe start off the year asking students to reflect on some global issues that are important to them while brainstorming ways to help. Considering joining classrooms around the world on flipgrid.com/whatif and/or flipgrid.com/globalvoice!

  16. Special Talents: Have students showcase a special talent or interest that they have. This could be done in the classroom or at home that night. Some examples could include singing a song, reciting a poem, demonstrating flexibility, showing a painting, demonstrating a sport, etc.

**You can do more with some of these ideas by using Flipgrid Classroom - feel free to use my promo code KRISTINMERRILL for a free trial!

Do you have another idea? Tweet it out and use the hashtag #FlipgridFever!  Looking forward to hearing from you.

Calling All Explorers 🌋🏜🏝

This past school year we launched the Flipgrid Explorer Series as a way for students to connect and engage with people doing interesting things around the world. 

Our first Explorer was Laura Goetz, a marine biologist stationed at Palmer Station in Antarctica. She shared her life at the bottom of the planet and chatted with students on topics ranging from fish to Cheetohs. Check out her Antartica grid!

Our second Explorer was Mike Billington, a raptor expert with the University of Minnesota Raptor Center. Mike introduced students to birds of prey and discussed topics covering wildlife and conservation. Check out his Raptor grid here.

This year, we’re planning to feature several new Explorers. If you know of anyone that may be an interesting candidate, please give us a shout at hello@Flipgrid.com. There are no parameters on who qualifies. 

Stay tuned as we’ll be introducing our next Explorer soon!

Bringing Students' Voices to the World

The following is a guest post by Nam Ngo Thanh (@mrnamvas). Mr. Nam is a primary school teacher at Vinschool in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. He has authored multiple articles, and been nationally and internationally recognized for the implementation of creativity and the integration of technology into his teaching. Mr. Nam works passionately to develop creative approaches to delivering quality education to his students in ways that inspire them to learn.

We live in a global, collaborative world. Students need to be connected for global collaboration and co-creation if we want to prepare them for the future. Learning can’t be limited to the classroom, but extended to the outside world. I hope students can easily talk to their peers all around the world and exchange their ideas. I hope that teachers cooperate internationally so that teaching and learning techniques can be much more exciting. Hopefully, students are provided with the skills to live in the 21st century and become international citizens who are able to adapt themselves in different cultures. Technology plays an active role in implementing the above. It has taken students to new places and allowed them to use the 4C of 21st century learning (collaboration, communication, critical thinking, creativity). Among the tools that both my students and I love, I can not fail to mention Flipgrid. I've known Flipgrid for less than a year but through the quick learning process I asked myself, "Why did I not know about Flipgrid sooner?" Now, as a Flipgrid Ambassador, I am confident in sharing some of the ways I have used this wonderful tool in my classroom:

Project introduction

When I started working on a global project, my first activity was to get my students to introduce themselves. For example, in the Five Safe Fingers project, students from 30 global schools will work together on Flipgrid to introduce themselves. They are excited to see the image, listen to their friends’ voice globally. They can also respond to those introductions. This activity helps to launch the project in a fun way. This method also helps to train students more confidence

Introduction to training

Currently, in addition to being a 5th grade teacher, I am also a Microsoft teacher ambassador. I regularly train information technology teachers in Vietnam. Throughout my many training classes, instead of letting people stand up and introduce themselves, I use Flipgrid to do this. After the training, participants can review the introduction of others at any time.

Collaborative lessons

Flipgrid is a great way to organize a collaborative lesson. With Flipgrid, geographical restrictions, timezones, etc. are no longer an issue. I used Flipgrid to collaborate with a class in the United States to share language, classroom culture, and other interesting information.

Learning campaigns

In some projects, such as "Water is Life" projects, students use Flipgrid to carry out their "I am a drop" campaigns. As a metaphorical drop of water, they call on everyone to save water.

Predicting and Commenting

In my Science and Math classes, I often use Flipgrid to give a video of a lesson related situation. Students respond with their comments and predictions about the results of the video that I gave. Through this activity, students gain more interest in the lesson and remember the knowledge longer.

Getting feedback from students

After each week of study, I would like to listen to students' feelings about what they have gone through. It could be: 3 things they liked the most (or didn’t like) in the past week; what they want to do in the next class. Students feel listened to, and I also know what I did well and what needs to be changed for students to love learning more.

Happy birthday!

I don’t only use Flipgrid for learning activities, I also use it for informal classroom activities. I often use it as a space to celebrate students’ birthdays. Students are delighted to see video congratulating them on their birthday from the rest of their class. With this simple activity, students experience a novel, memorable birthday experience.

The Asynchronous Video Revolution

The following is a guest post by Matt Frattali and F. Margret Atkinson. Matt has been teaching for 20 years and is currently the middle school tech coach at Lowell School in Washington DC. He is an EdCamp Junkie, #Vedchat founder, GoogleEI, and is especially interested in PBL and Genius Hour. Margret teaches 6-8 literature in Zachary, Louisiana, and through her work with Real World Scholars's EdCorps, National History Day, and Teach Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and her students' EdCorps The Upstander Brand, she engages for student voice to affect change.

Ten years ago, Twitter ushered in a new kind of PD, allowing teachers from around the world to communicate and share for a few minutes nightly. We've seen Twitter chats become The Force that binds all teachers together. But Twitter chats aren't very personal, as it’s hard to get to know newfound friends and share big ideas in 140 characters.

Enter Flipgrid and #Vedchat. Flipgrid is a simple, smart, and powerful engine to drive deeper discussion. It makes asynchronous video accessible to everyone and provides a platform to connect teachers voices around the world. 

#Vedchat, a video extension of Twitter’s #edchat, is a weekly Q&A slow chat powered by Flipgrid.  #Vedchat has a different feel because video cultivates your PLN in a deeply personal way. The authors know this firsthand, as they met on #Vedchat :-)

But still, the asynchronous video PD revolution will be an uphill battle. Video can be a commitment: people feel they must look presentable, it takes a bit more time, and some of our educator colleagues can be camera shy. But Flipgrid is a game changer because with asynchronous video you have infinite redo’s, and you can keep recording until you look great! Besides, you're sharing with your awesome PLN who knows that your voice and ideas is what matters. That's what Flipgrid is all about.

It gets better. Asynchronous video is a stepping stone to synchronous video (like Skype), which in turn is a stepping stone to video production and citizen journalism. Yes, in helping individuals find their voice, Flipgrid is promoting democracy.

Flipgrid is the hottest app in edtech right now. The #FlipgridFever Twitter chat on Monday was bonkers; many remarked how they’ve never seen tweets roll by so fast. Flipgrid is a classroom tool that can amplify student voice like none other in recent memory.  

Please join our PLN this week at www.vedchat.com as we talk with fellow Flipgrid Ambassador Dan Ryder and Amy Burvall about their new book Intention: Critical Creativity in the Classroom.