I wrote this when I came back last night from our monthly meeting. Yum! TPRS teachers do the best food!
I do love our group for more than the food…we plunked a total newby in front of the group with Susie’s coaching template and made her go for it. She was quite brave and successful, especially given that she had just barely heard of TPRS and since she was facing a room full of nuts who spend three extra hours honing their teaching skills on a Friday.
We worked our way up the steps, and ended up coaching Marcia (who walks on water) through adding details, personalizing between one student and the class, reporting on dialogue, negative/positive assessment, and back-pedaling when someone gets lost…all in one coaching run. I think we broke several rules of coaching, but we were all very enthusiastic.
My major insights from the evening? First, proceed slowly, point and pause. Yeah, I’ve heard that before! And I’ve said that before. I can see where point and pause will help with spelling. And there are ways and ways of going slowly, and they don’t all require stolid repetition. Betsy showed us how we can slide up the speed dial within the period of a coaching session. She’s another water-walker.
Second, Diana passed on something she’d heard that we all liked (credit if you can): instead of asking kids to show a 10 for understanding everything, a 1 for nothing, ask them to show a 10 if I’m going slowly enough for them to understand everything.
Third: Japanese is actually easy when Dimond High teachers are teaching it through TPRS. Miyuki, Atsuko, Victoria, Betsy…kids are lucky to learn from you every day.
Fourth: even a group of mostly “advanced TPRS” teachers benefits from going back to square one to practice.