A Comprehensible Input Approach – Various Delivery Methods

Posted on June 18, 2013 by


          This is the third post in my A Comprehensible Input Approach series. At the bottom of this post, I’m linking to the other posts as well as Rachel’s post on this topic too.

There are a multitude of ways to deliver comprehensible input. Below is a list of activities that Keith and Bob introduced with either a short description or a link to a write up that explains it better.

  1. TPR – Total Physical Response – Keith did a great job demonstrating this technique at our session. Bob has a write up of the first ten hours (two weeks) of school using TPR.
  2. Circling with Balls – This is an exciting technique that I cannot wait to try this year. Bob explained it pretty simply: give students in each period (a different colour for each period) a piece of cardstock. Every day have them draw 1-2 things about themselves (an animal they have/want to have, an activity they want to learn to do/love to do). Then, collect them and choose 3-4 students to talk to the next day. Ask PQA about their items. It is a great way to circle old structures, learn more about your students, and can be a great start to a really interesting TPRS story.
  3. TPRS – Ask and Tell – You can read  Rachel’s write up of this topic here.
  4. PQA – Personalised Questions and Answers – This is a great activity to get your students talking. Write 4 or so simple questions in Latin to ask the students (e.g. Over the weekend, whom did you visit? Where did you go? etc.) Give students writing time and then start asking questions (always give an example first!) You can spend the whole period on this, or, like circling with balls, just do a few a day. These can become a great story!
  5. WAYK – Where Are Your Keys – You can read my write up on this topic here.
  6. Micrologue – Keith includes a great write up of this activity on his document “Gaudium Audiendi” 
  7. Dictatio – A great Monday activity. This requires little of students and teacher and makes for a great low key/quiet day. Choosing 8-10 sentences, short preferably, have students write down everything you say, to the best of their ability. I repeat sentences 3 times. No talking, no questions. Then, project them one by one and pause for questions. You can ask basic comprehension questions, circle vocabulary, or do choral translation.
  8. Embedded Readings – You can read my write up hereBob also links to Laurie Clarq’s thoughts on it.
  9. Read and Discuss – A great activity for an embedded reading. Read paragrah by paragraph. Stop to circle new words and structures. You can also include a “draw” aspect where you allow students a minute or two to draw what is happening in the paragraph. Ask comprehension questions in Latin and, if students get bored, switch to PQA using the new vocabulary.
  10. One Word Pictures – This is another really easy activity that doesn’t require much from the teacher. Using the new vocabulary, choose very clear, simple images. Project one, teach the word, and start asking PQA questions. For example, if the word was canis, you could put up a picture of a dog and start asking, “discipuli, estne canis? estne feles? est canis an feles?” and then move into, “habesne canem? visne habere canem?” etc. This can become a TPRS story or you can cycle through pictures.
  11. Word Chunk Game – You can read Bob’s write up of this topic here.
  12. Readers’ Theatre – The name suggests it all – have students act out a story! This works great if you have students who are actors in the room. Caute! You will want to make sure that your actors follow every instruction of the narrator. If the line is to be read angrily, they need to go over the top in anger! If you say, “vir ambulat in cubiculum triste” they should walk with so much grief that no one can question their motives.

This is just a basic list of activities. I realise that I may not have given each activity the justice it deserves in this brief write up. Please do not hesitate to post questions for clarification! Let’s keep this discussion going!

Links to Other Posts

Rachel’s Write up

Miriam’s first post – An Introduction to CI in the Classroom

Miriam’s third post – Vocabulary is more than just flashcards

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