After that we gave a talk about Comprehensible Input to those interested. There were about 24 teachers that attended and they were a very fun and kind group of teachers.
We taught 90 minute blocks and my Spanish 1 students were great kids. They were very respectful but quite unsure of me since I am so weird. By the end of the class though, I was able to win quite a few of them over.
While I was incredibly nervous, the teachers and students were gracious to us and I couldn't have asked for a nicer group to do my first TPRS model lesson and co-lead a professional development session.
Here's what I did in my lesson plan, not knowing what to do for a Spanish 1 class, and I didn't get through it all.
- Warm up: Have students draw something they want on a paper and write their name at the top
- This is an adaptation of an activity used by Ben Slavic that I used at the beginning of the year called, “Circling with Balls”
- If I am not mistaken, it can be found in either his book TPRS in a Year or PQA in a Wink. I can’t remember. He does have more recent books thought where it might be covered. I believe Teacher’s Discovery even carries his “Big Book of CI” if anyone is interested.
- PQA (Personalized Questions and Answers) - Talk to class in Spanish
- Start talking about student in TL with what they want to do
- Compare and contrast a few different students to establish some students that want to do various things that we could later use in our story or if anything to:
- Build confidence in the language/structures
- Learn about classmates to help them form identity in class
- Circle information and go slow
- Add details as needed / time permitted
- Establish meaning for our story structures with TPR
- Go over words/phrases
- Teach or ask for gesture
- Ask for association (what does it look like or sound like that helps us remember) --- for some kids this can be helpful, for others it’s not. So don’t dedicate too much time on it. But if we can help a few kids with it, time isn’t wasted
- Model gestures; go slower; go incorrectly
- If students won’t gesture, remind class, “Not everyone must understand. I guess I can’t move on because I need everyone to understand” (or something similar).
- Never confrontational; always in the idea of they must show comprehension (interaction with input that is visible to me); it’s a class norm from day 1
- Tell a story - TPRS
- Ideally someone will want to dance and just go right into that
- Interview actor and establish details; help them model I forms in present
- Story in past; dialogue in present; expose kids sooner to more grammar but in more narrow way (not 150 -ar verbs… maybe fewer verbs that we can do more with in the lower levels)
- Have character have problem (wants to dance with someone; no one where they are)
- Go to place; tell someone, “I want to dance” or “Do you want to dance?”
- Have characters want something else or want to dance
- Have happy ending or sad ending; at least 2-3 locations if time
- Brain Break - this is a lot of language and I need to break up all that if the kids aren’t used to it. I like to bring in movement or music during blocks to help break it up.
- Play song: Baila sin César from 31 minutos.
- Go over what it means
- If time; try to play around with it and maybe use story structures to talk about video in Spanish
- Do reading of César wanting to dance with different characters
- Read sentence/paragraph and ask for kids to help translate it together as we go through it
- Ask questions in Spanish about different parts of the story
- Yes/ no (that we know)
- either/or (that we know)
- Open-ended (that we know)
- open-ended (that they can guess answer to and add to story with words they know)
- Ex: Why does he like to dance?- Both of his parents dance. In his opinion, it’s his destiny. His hero is [famous dancer].
- Exit ticket: Quiz over written story in Spanish
- Mostly yes or no questions 5-6
- 2 one word answer: who; what; where; how questions
- César quiere bailar solo. (Yes/no)
- César quiere bailar con otra persona. (Yes/no)
- Las otras personas quieren bailar con César. (Yes/no)
- Lady Gaga quiere cantar. (Yes/no)
- Twitter quiere escribir en Donald Trump. (Yes/no)
- ¿Quién quiere bailar con César? - Una vaca
- ¿Qué quiere hacer César? - Bailar.
If we could do a Por qué because comprehension is really good:
8. ¿Por qué no está alegre César?
Las personas no quieren bailar con él.
And here are my presentation notes.
It's similar to my FLAM presentation but I tweaked it to suit their needs more. Bess and I decided to really focus more on TPRS and the skills therein since if you can get those down, you can do other things with those skills with success: MovieTalk, PictureTalk, etc. Because TPRS is what has helped us to maintain comprehensibility in our classes.
Hopefully it was helpful to some in their paradigm shift.
*I think 'francophone' can be used this way even if she's not a Native speaker.