Sunday, August 20, 2006

Total Physical Response

I realized that most of the people reading this (all, what, five of them) have no idea what the title of this blog means. Total Physical Response is a method of language instruction that uses the physical body. An example of a TPR practice would be, say, in a pre-kindergarten class where the teacher tells a group of children, "Let's raise our hands in the air," modeling the action herself, and the children would respond by raising their hands. It engages several different learning styles. They hear commands, see their teacher and classmates responding to the commands, and use their bodies (kinesthetic learning) to respond as well. It allows children with all levels of language skill to participate. There's a lot more to it, but that's a basic example. I liked the name because it sounds pretty dramatic for such a simple concept.


Blogger Venha Futuro said...

TPR is a great way to teach basic vocabulary to an adult ESL class. Kids wave their hands in the air all the time -- it means nothing to them. But if you get a group of thirty-somethings waving their hands in the air, they will not soon forget it.

8/26/2006 9:40 PM  
Blogger lily of the valley said...

Indeed! I don't teach adults though. I have been doing some TPR with my 4th graders. I'm not sure if it counts as TPR, but I've also been using facial expressions a lot to help them learn some vocabulary words, and having them try to match the expressions. We all made our "cantankerous" faces last week, for example.

8/26/2006 10:18 PM  
Blogger Venha Futuro said...

Please, please, please tell me you have photos of the cantankerous faces!

8/27/2006 5:36 PM  
Blogger lily of the valley said...

Ha! No. I am avoiding any details here that could identify myself and my district, as much as possible. Despite being constantly frustrated with the jeezers, I really don't intend to humiliate anyone. Or to lose my job.

8/27/2006 7:19 PM  

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