Why Worry? You can Try CI in 30 minutes a week!
Dip your toes into using more Comprehensible Input in your language class. You can keep on doing your normal stuff, following the textbook, Scope and Sequence, or doing other activities, just add a few activities to give your students more opportunities to interact with the language.
I am not going to lie; it is my sincere hope that you will find that the time you spend interacting comprehensibly in the language will be enjoyable, and the improved emotional tenor of the lesson will make you want more of that feeling, so that you find more and more and more ways to spend more time in the language with your students. But even if you are totally constrained by external pressures or your own doubts about throwing yourself into the CI Deep End, you can give your students enjoyable and memorable experiences in the language that do not require you to turn cartwheels, be too dramatic, or do too much - if any - extra planning.
These lessons are designed, as well, for teachers who feel like they need to be able to prepare the language they use ahead of time, due to nerves, the need to turn in lesson plans, or their still-growing proficiency in the language they teach.
These “sessions” can be administered daily, periodically throughout the week, weekly, or just once in a while. However, they are designed to build on each other and it is recommended that you try them in order. They can take ten minutes up to thirty minutes, depending on how they are going. If you are nervous, then just allot the last ten minutes to dip into CI. If you start to feel more confident, and these activities are engaging to your students, then you might want to devote longer, or begin the period with them.
You can also keep repeating the same “session” many times. If you change the content (for example, the picture you are describing or the timeline you are narrating to the students), then the sessions should not start feeling “stale” for a few repetitions, while you get comfortable with your skills at delivering CI.
I am working to build this course, which will eventually have 36 sessions, one for each week of the typical school year. Each session will have a lesson like the one below and a video (or more) modeling the strategy. To reward you for your patience in getting this course put together, there is a tiered pricing plan:
Through August 31: $17
Through January 31: $27
Till it is done: $37
When it is finished the final price will be $77. We are hoping to have most, of not all, of the lessons finished by July 15. The talented Meg Volz is helping to write lessons so we can complete the package.
Teachers who purchase this course have permission to print and share the strategies and resources with three colleagues.
Tina Hargaden has been a K-12 educator for 14 years, and has taught middle and high school English Language Arts, Reading, Social Studies, French, Spanish and ESOL. Her passion is supporting teachers to strengthen their literacy instruction, design courses that foster efficient and lasting language acquisition, and implement authentic performance assessment, because it is her firm belief that when we shift our language instruction to a proficiency stance, we help ensure equitable access to academic success for more students. She lives in Portland, Oregon and is the founder of the World Language Proficiency Project and CI Liftoff. Tina is the co-author of the book, Year-One:A Natural Approach to the Year, which provides step-by-step guidance for a year of communicative, proficiency-oriented World Language instruction. She has presented and keynoted at numerous state, regional, and national conferences, worked with many school districts and departments, and given workshops and institutes to educators all over to support them in strengthening language outcomes for all students.
Frequently Asked Questions
Start1. Listening Comprehension - Description of a Picture
Start2. Listening Comprehension - Compare and Contrast Two Pictures
Start3. Listening Comprehension - Picture BINGO
Start4. Listening Comprehension and Scaffolded Presentational Writing - Who’s That Person?
Start5. Listening and Reading Comprehension - Picture and Sentence Sorts
Start6. Scaffolded Presentational Writing - Thematic/Topical Class Paragraph
Start7. Listening Comprehension - Who in Class is Wearing?
Start8. Listening and Reading Comprehension - Weekend Talk - Future Plans (With Interpersonal Speaking Extension Activity)
Start9: Interpersonal Communication - Expressing opinions on “oddly satisfying” YouTube videos
Start10. Reading Comprehension and Interpersonal Communication - What will you do next weekend?
Start11. Intermediate Interpretive Reading/Listening—Discourse Scramble
Start12. Listening and Reading Comprehension - How do you feel today?
Start13. Interpersonal and Interpretive Communication - Answering questions about mukbang (eating) videos
Start14. Interpretive Reading — Understand and Draw