I listened to a podcast about CI. The speaker was saying that there are many CI “fanatics” out there talking about how comprehensible input is the only way to teach a language. He explained that there are many other ways to teach a language that work perfectly well, and that CI is only one of them.
I’m a blue-blooded CI fanatic, and I say, based on my long experience in the field, that the speaker was incorrect. Either he doesn’t really understand CI and Krashen, or he was pandering to the legion of teachers who still have yet to discover that the only way to learn another language is through comprehensible input.
He may have been pandering to his audience, and if he was I can’t blame him. There are so many people who are petrified at the prospect of having to change, and if he didn’t water down the message about CI he wouldn’t have any listeners. He didn’t want to sound like a fanatic.
However, in my opinion, that is not the way that change in education happens. Real reform happens when people with clear vision state true things about the research and aligning with the standard without fear. Then they develop ways that give the research and the standard wheels in their classroom.
Blaine Ray did that starting in the early 1990s and deserves to be honored and praised for his pioneering work in our field. He did this consciously, based directly on Krashen’s research (which was started in the early 1970s). Blaine is a genius and we should thank him for what he has done for us, his gift to all of us, TPRS, the early version of the CI Movement.
At first a few get it, then gradually people climb on board and after fifty or a hundred years or so, the change becomes the norm. This is what will happen with CI. Those who don’t get it will lose their place in the profession as the work being done with CI now gradually surrounds them and exposes all traditional methods for what they are – a fraud.
For me to get to the point where I can speak with such confidence and clarity of mind and heart, the change took decades of rubbing away the rust and embedded dirt on the mirror of my profession in a most painstaking way. And the mirror is clean now.
Now my task is to find the people whose heart chakras are open heart. It will be the younger teachers of the new kick-ass generation that is in their 20s now. They are the first wave. Then a second wave will appear. They will be the students of some of the gifted early CI pioneers.
A few of those teachers are in this group. You know who you are. Welcome to the post-Covid, post-George Floyd era.
At this time, make sure your seat backs and tray tables are in their full upright position. If you haven’t already done so, please stow the baggage you carried onto this flight below the seat in front of you or in an overhead bin. Throw your baggage away once we land in the 21st century. If you have any questions about our flight, please don’t hesitate to ask a child who has been taught using CI. Thank you and enjoy the flight.