How the Fisch Flip sparked an idea for conference design

FLIPTHINKING_1713383cToday’s post by Jeff Hurt on applying the Fisch Flip to your conference model got me thinking.

If you haven’t read about it already, the term Fisch Flip was coined by Daniel Pink, named after a veteran Colorado schoolteacher, Karl Fisch, who realized he could be more effective in the classroom if he flipped traditional homework and schoolwork. Instead of lecturing in the classroom and giving homework exercises for students to work on at home, he started recording his topic lectures for students to watch for homework after school, and used his lesson time to help students apply the concepts he’d covered.

Use face to face time for interactive, participative learning, and flip the broadcast listening-to-the teacher instruction to the time/location when it’s most appropriate: out of school, at the student’s convenience.

Simple…and brilliant!

When I read this my first thought was: “Whoa, the flipped classroom piece corresponds nicely to the Conferences That Work design, which generates mostly participative session formats.”

My second thought was: “But Conferences That Work aren’t focused around pre-shared content but around participants’ existing experience and expertise. So there’s not an exact correspondence.”

And then an idea: How about asking participants to share (via an online event community) before the conference interesting things they’ve done or learned, with the goal of preparing/stimulating participants for potential discussions at the event? Although the Conferences That Work design won’t guarantee in advance that a specific session will take place, much of the pre-conference sharing will be useful and illuminating, and some of it will spark comments, questions, and ideas that can be explored when participants get together.

I’ll be trying this out at future conferences.

Hmmm, interesting idea. Thanks for sparking it Jeff!

Image attribution: Daily Telegraph