A little about TPR Storytelling
Spanish opens the door to many different opportunities. My goal is that the students taking Spanish can not only acquire the language, but learn important skills that will prepare them for college and to work in a culturally diverse world. Learning a language is not just about acquiring the vocabulary and speech sounds, but it is also about learning the culture. Through the study of languages students can open their minds and have the opportunity to understand other cultures. As students acquire Spanish in this class they will be better equipped to function in an ever changing, culturally diverse world.
How does the course work? TPR Storytelling
TPRS (Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling) is quickly becoming one of the most popular classroom language teaching methods. It is based on much of Stephen Krashens theory on comprehensible input. Students need to have a language spoken to them just like a baby learning their first language. Therefore, this method came about to create situations in the classroom where student could have opportunities to speak, read, write, and hear the target language in a comprehensible manner. The method is very fun and engaging because it allows for the students to act and provide their input into the stories made up in class. It also provides a way for differentiated instruction and a lot of repetition with the language. In this short explanation my goal is to briefly explain how it works in the classroom. I do not claim to be an official source in my explanation of the method; my intent is only to provide some background on the method to show how I have taught during my student teaching experience.
As mentioned above the goal of this method is to give students comprehensible input. Any input that is not comprehensible is not good for the students. Therefore, translation is used as well as “acting” in the stories to give the words being studied context. Students are trained to give responses to the teacher when he or she says something interesting. (Every statement the teacher makes is interesting). Students are also trained to give signals if they do not understand. Having this base established, the teacher will introduce vocabulary to the students, (Usually three to four short phrases). The student and the teacher come up with actions for these phrases so that students can have some background knowledge before they begin. The teacher then begins a story with the students. He will have actors and props to make the story funny and interesting and also gives the students opportunity to add detail. When done correctly, the result is an opportunity for the teacher to review the structures being studied with the students in an engaging way.