It Won’t Change

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13 thoughts on “It Won’t Change”

  1. We had a wonderful Saturday T/CI Chicagoland meeting this weekend. There were some queries at the beginning of our gathering about how to document for admin what we are each doing in our classrooms: Scope & Sequence, Curriculum Maps, Evidence of Progress and all that jazz. There were some brave lone wolf newbies among the attendees. I offered up the observation that these docs, though they are ‘sold’ as a tool for teachers, are not really useful or helpful to us, therefore we ought to invest as little time as possible/acceptable making and maintaining them, and not get our undies all bunched up about them. They are strictly CYA.
    I’m wondering if it might not be TREMENDOUSLY HELPFUL to have a folder on the PLC of such curriculum docs for folks to peruse and mine as needed. When I get to work tomorrow I will send Ben a copy of our district’s grades 1-8 current World Language KUDs (Knows, Understands, Does) which is kinda like a S &S without the timeline. It’s the format we HAD to use (a la Wiggins & McTighe). It is filled with all kinds of T/CI tender nuggets, wrapped in a burrito of edu-speak, then the whole thing is smothered in ACTFL standards-esque thematic cheeze.
    But folks might really dig cutting and pasting the stuff we came up with as T/CI-ers (leave the rest on the plate.) Especially the essential question stuff. It’s a simple yet elegant document.
    I say whoever has nice looking school docs, charts, maps, rubrics and all that, let’s put ’em in a folder and keep them here as well as send ’em to the moreTPRS list as a pdf. This frees up time, energy and humor for the stuff we really signed up for.

    1. Alisa,

      I would LOVE to see your document! I teach French grades 6-8 (exploratory, Intro, and Level 1) and our county is currently revamping the 6th grade WL program. They are switching it from a 9 week exploratory to (potentially) semester long and it will be an opt out course. I am on the committee that is writing the curriculum to go along with this 6th grade course and am trying to find ways to make sure that it is CI friendly. Our Director is completely on board with that, but there are many traditional teachers in our county who are just unaware of SLA and my partner and I have respectfully disagreed on wording already. We are meeting after school today and the document has to be finished by March. I have been scouring the internet trying to find examples of anything we can use for inspiration. Thank you so much for offering to share!

  2. Of course I am not advocating oppositional defiance in my post above, merely to say that we need to plan less and do more, and so yes Alisa I think this would be a great addition to have a folder on the PLC of such documents for PLC members.

    We’ll add a hard link above for this new set of (ultra valuable and time saving) documents.

  3. Ben,

    CI is trending!!!

    Just as Alisa mentioned above…there are NOW wonderful TPRS/CI experiences happening all over the country on weekly and monthly basis. Things are not perfect but CI is trending across the U.S.

    Carol Gaab, Stephen Krashen, and Bill VanPatten had unprecedented success at ACTFL this year. Jim Wooldridge was the Keynote speaker at CCFLT over the weekend. Grant Boulanger and Darcy Pippins are among this year’s TOY in their states. Blaine has over 40 attendees in his Chicago workshop next week…

    My recommendation is to check out Facebook and Twitter and join the dozens of groups that are discussing CI on an ongoing basis. Training is getting better than ever…if you do not think so I would love to read your rebuttal on how trainings are not good or effective in 2016.


    Tri-State CI group, TPRS deskless, TPRS Trainers, IFLT NTPRS CI group, Southwest TPRS group, TCI Maine, #langchat, #TeawithBVP, CI Iowa just to name a few.

    I will mention again that things are not perfect. Individual teachers are still dealing with ignorance about SLA from outsiders and the old guard. The only thing we can really do is be part of the change we want to see and spread the news about teaching with stories and Comprehensible Input.

    1. I should also mention TPRS Teacher of the Year from Colorado Annick Chen.

      Also if there are others please share…it is hard to stay up on all the CI success.

  4. Michael I think we are both right. I see many teachers who are not being helped within their buildings. So they are taking to the internet and must learn from external sources of trainings like workshops and conferences as you describe, which is great. What I describe above is based on my observations of how sluggish things are in school buildings, is what made me write that above. I address that in a comment to Diane today as well.

  5. Call me an eternal optimist, but we are seeing an increase in the T/CI offerings at regional and national conferences, a proliferation of T/CIster blogs and instructional materials, growing numbers of attendees at our area learning community meetings, interest in translating existing materials into more languages for instruction here and abroad. We are DEFINITELY getting the word out. This will help the tipping point come faster!!

  6. I got your docs Alisa and will share them here very soon. It is excellent stuff that will be very well received by our community and meet real and pressing needs. I hope others will follow with more curriculum docs/scope and sequences. Your offerings here are well timed and very welcome, so thank you!

  7. I’ve been “charged” with writing up our curriculum (all 5 levels…) this year. I have some things done that I can get to you fairly soon. Our “curriculum” is organized around 4 units per year, each unit includes a novel, a movie, several songs and whatever else we want to do. :o)

    with love,

  8. First, I would LOVE to see curriculum documents from any and all willing to share!

    Secondly, despite being in a personally difficult situation, I see thing moving in the right direction. I attended the SCOLT conference this past weekend. AJ Fernandez presented (for the 1st time ever!) on making the switch to a CI program – his presentation was at 8 a.m. on Saturday morning and was standing room only. There was also a CI-friendly presentation by Laura Sexton and Karen Tharrington (an NC State professor) which was very well attended and received. And last but not least Donna Tatum-Johns and Sarah Moran presented on Movie-talk and lured in a huge number of people who didn’t even realize they were learning a CI strategy (I know because half of my department was there!)

    The more of us that are out there making presentations and giving non-CI teachers a glimpse of what they are missing, the more respect we will get.

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