When I first heard about “Flipping Bloom’s Taxonomy” I asked myself “What is going on?”. The word flipping became so popular that it became something like if you want to attract attention just take an old concept and put the word “flipping/flipped” in front of it. Here is a meme I prepared for it.
The idea is presented by Shelly Wright in her May 15, 2012 post. You should read this article before you continue reading. Also I advice you to read the comments in the same page. Another article I liked is written by Justin Marquis in here.
Flipping Bloom’s Taxonomy is not a bad idea. Actually when you think about 21st century skills for education you have to bring new perspectives to the pedagogy so this is one of them. I’m not against it. I’m against the people who says you have to use this new flipped taxonomy every time. I think learning is a very complicated process and it is not linear. For different age groups and different subjects the first taxonomic step you should start with can change and also you can skip some steps too. Let me give you an example.
Assume that you are constructing a building and you’ll follow the steps of flipped taxonomy. First you create a building with your little (maybe no) knowledge. Obviously it didn’t last long and came down. Now you evaluate the situation and start analyzing the facts; what happened? what were the possible causes? etc. and you get some results, hypothesis or assumptions. You apply them on a new building and with every successful step you begin to understand the facts. If your results fail you analyze them again and come up with new ones. When you are done with your building you have the solid information you must remember if you want to construct a new building.
As you see you made the building twice so you spend more time, more money and more resources. Convert this example into one of your lessons and try to repeat the same process. You can say that students got a better understanding and you may be right but do you have enough time or resources to apply these?
It’s not just about resources. My problem is with the order of the levels of Bloom’s taxonomy. I believe there is a complex relation among them and instead of using a pyramid (flipped or not) we should use an art palette. If every level is represented with a color then after you finish your lesson you must have something like this; an art palette with blended colors.