Greenfield Community College

Greenfield Community College

Approaches to Teaching

There is no single approach to teaching that works best. What we do in the classroom depends on who we are, who our students are, what we are teaching, and many other factors. There are some guiding principles that can help use to create the condition that support and promote learning.


Looking at this graphic, it seems that active classroom activities may help students learn and retain information in ways that traditional lectures do not. Get students engaged and excited about their learning using Active Learning methods.

Look for ways to prompt students to think more deeply about course concepts and the learning process through Prompts That Get Students to Analyze, Reflect, Relate, and Question.

The Flipped Classroom

The Flipped Classroom is a teaching approach that moves lectures outside of the classroom to allow classroom time to be spent in more dynamic learning activities. Before arriving to class, students often watch recorded video lectures and read through lecture materials, complete a basic assessment to ensure they have understood basic concepts. They then arrive in the classroom ready to engage with their peers in discussions and other student-centered learning activities. Looking at the Learning Pyramid provides some incentive to move away from lectures to more practice-based activities in the classroom.

Overview: Watch one instructors approach in her YouTube video

The Flipped Classroom: Pro and Cons

Flipping A Class: A How-to Guide for Beginners

This teaching strategy seems to be gaining momentum because it gets results. Shaking up tried and true teaching methods can be controversial and this approach is not for everyone, but for some teachers and students, it is breathing new life into the learning experience. Read more from the NYTimes on the Flipped Classroom.