NTPRS14 Chicago – The third day – Wednesday the 23rd of July

Workshop Blaine and Von Ray The power of going deep - NTPRS14Wednesday I first went to the advanced workshop by Blaine & Von Ray: The power of going deep. This year the advanced workshops were from 8.30 -11.30, then a break of two hours and then the workshops continue for two more hours from 1.30-3.30 p.m. Then a short break of a quarter of an hour and then sessions from 3.45-5.15 or open coaching & exhibitors. Then a break of a quarter of an hour and then showcases by masterteachers, like Blaine Ray, Michael Miller, Mira Canion, Laruie Clarcq, Bryce Hedstrom, Karen Rowan and Jason Fritze.

In The power of going deep we had to work in small groups and work out ideas for stories. Blaine stressed again how imporatn it is to try to find out where the students break down through: hesitancy, comprehension, lack of confidence.

Bryan KandelDuring lunchtime = Wholefoods time; we go there with a small group of TPRS-teachers (only female…). It’s nice to have such a long brak in between, to having some time for yourself, to go outside in the sun, to talk to each other.

In the afternoon I went to the sesson by Bryan Kandel “Student-driven Curriculum”. Here you can find his slideshow as pdf. It was in fact all about PQA. His image of a little devil whispering bad things about his deficiencies in his ears and a little saint (Blaine) giving him positive advice was very funny.

Afterwards to Mira Canion’s showcase; it’s amazing how she can Mira Canionthink on her feet and react always so quickly! BTW, very hard to make a picture of her, because she hardly stands still (like a lot of TPRS teachers..)

In the evening were the immersion dinners, but somehow I did miss where the French teachers would meet and when I returned from Mira’s session and dropping my things in my room, everybody had gone. So I decided to walk to Wholefoods, along a busy street with lot’s of cars because it was rush hour. On my way I met one of the Turkey’s military language teachers who was already going back and on my way back when it was already getting dark, Betsy Paskvan was walking behind me – at first I did not recogize her and I thought “Why is this woman walking faster and faster towards me?” . She also happened to have been at Wholefoods and we went back walking & talking and like this time flew and we arrived at the hotel when it had become dark.

My roommate and French teacher Michele Kindt returned very late and I heard from her that the French teachers went to a restaurant in Naperville, where they had been singing all evening and that the aother guests had also been singing, so they had a great French evening. What a pity I missed it all!

 

 

 

 

NTPRS13 – Tuesday the 23rd of July – day 2

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Von verifying a detail with Linda

Today I went to the workshop of Von and Blaine, ‘Verifying and dramatizing‘. This new feature of TPRS I missed last year, because Bryce Hedstrom and I were doing at the same moment the Going Slowly workshop. So I was really curious how and what ‘Verifying and dramatizing’ is, because I heard many positive things about it, also from my roommate Michelle Kindt (one of the coaches and she is the coach who is working together with Von and Blaine in ‘Verifying and dramatizing’). Last week she worked for three days with Blaine in a workshop and there he used German and although Michelle never practiced speaking German in this workshop herself, she nevertheless knew it all afterwards and she was amazed and even admitted she had been skeptical about this feature of having the actors giving output so early in the process, but it turned out to be very benificial.

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Linda verifying a detail with Zach

Von started with an explanation how to work with actors and how you talk to them and verify details with them and then ask questions to the class about what they just heard about the actor. E.g. Teacher: Are you a girl? Actor: Yes, I am a girl. You ask the class for new details about the actor, because the collective knows more than the individual, so personalization goes through the class and not the actor. Von also said: Comprehension is the tip of the iceberg and the goal is speaking with confidence. The idea is new for us TPRS teachers to insist on production.

After talking for a while with class and actors you add another character and you start doing the same things as you did with the first actor, but you also start comparing them to the class.

Blaine: “Dialogue is so powerful! Don’t circle dialogue, move from the dialogue to the class.”

Von: “Working with actors and having dialogues between teacher and actors gives maximum visibility and it’s very entertaining.”

After the theoretical explanation and Von’s German demo (and later Blaine’s German demo) we practiced several times in small groups of three, where one of us was the teacher, one was ‘the class’ and one was the actor and later the actors (the hand was the other actor and ‘talked’. We switched roles about every 10 minutes in order that everyone could practice as much as possible. Tomorrow I’m going to practice it again in the coaching workshop. I think it’s a very interesting skill and I never knew very well what to do with the actors and with dialogues, but this really made it clear!

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A Wordle of ‘Agentes secretos’ by Mira Canion

After lunch and the second part of our ‘Verifying and dramatizing workshop’ I went the session of Mira Canion ‘Reading strategies and materials’. She wrote several Spanish and French novels which contain tons of cultural aspects. She has many wonderful ideas how to make students want to read books, by making them curious to the subject. You can find Mira’s downloads at the resources page at her site ‘Mira Canion’.

Mira has so many good ideas about reading and she can think so well on her feet that it’s a great pleasure to be in her session. I’m already looking forward to Mira’s contribution to the open mic night!

 

Other teachers writing about NTPRS 2013:

Michael Miller : http://www.charoylee.com/Charo_y_Lee/NTPRS_2013/NTPRS_2013.html

Bess : http://mmehayles.blogspot.com/

Haiyun : She writes detailed reflections on the workshops she has attended.
1. on Coaching for Coaches:
http://tprsforchinese.blogspot.com/2013/07/coaching-for-coaches.html

2. on verifying details with Blaine and Von.
http://tprsforchinese.blogspot.com/2013/07/verifying-details-with-blaine-ray-and.html

http://tprsforchinese.blogspot.com/2013/07/verifying-details-with-blaine-ray-and_22.html

Another overview of the blogs above by Dick Detwiler: http://moretprs.wikispaces.com/NTPRS+2013