Stepping Stones To Stories!
Ben's System Of Starting The Year With Comprehensible Input
TPRS trainings used to focus on stories right
away. People would do a workshop and then try to start teaching in
the fall using stories in their beginning level classes. It rarely
worked. It was too much, too fast.
It is the premise of this book that it is best to
wait to start using stories until the late fall or early winter, not
before, using alternatives, the stepping stone strategies offered in
this book, to start our year.
These stepping stones to stories are easier to
learn than stories. In addition to preparing the teacher in the art
of using comprehensible input, they also show the teacher how to set
1. a strong and vibrant classroom management
2. a personalized classroom
3. an assessment program that works and saves
The caution to new teachers is that, without the
classroom management, personalization and assessment pieces in place
first, it is much more difficult to make comprehension based
instruction work. In fact, it is nearly impossible.
Why is starting out a school year with stories a
most difficult thing to pull off in foreign language classrooms?
What opposes their use in secondary school classrooms in the United
States? Here are some reasons:
1. The entire system of storytelling is very hard
to learn and most people give up on it within months of trying it.
2. The vast majority of students don’t know how
to interact with their teachers in class and must be trained.
3. The data gathering and grading pieces required
in schools are in conflict with the soul of comprehension based
instruction. Students, parents and especially administrators who
don’t understand storytelling can ruin careers.
4. TPRS as a pedagogical term conveys an image of
classroom chaos to huge amounts of teachers, due to past TPRS
failures by teachers.
5. Training is insufficient. It is folly to ask a
teacher to attend a summer training in the area of comprehension
based instruction and then go in and make the bucking bronco of
comprehension based teaching work in their classroom in the fall.
Training wheels, stepping stones to stories, are
available here. The teacher who wants instruction in personalization
is advised to read "PQA in a Wink!" Read "TPRS in a Year!" for
training in actual story creation.
The purpose of this book is to help you get your
year cranked up with good classroom discipline and personalization
before you worry about stories later. You’ll be a lot better with
stories having studied and practiced the ideas in this book first.
This is the right place to start.
In Stepping Stones to Stories, You Will Discover
* Start your school year with simplified
strategies that work.
* Choose and implement the strategies that work best for you.
* Teach using comprehensible input without using stories if you
don't want to.
* Bring students into your classroom process without forcing them.
* Teach for authentic language acquisition.
* Align with 21st century standards and research.
* Manage your classroom in ways that really work.
* Establish an assessment program that works and saves time.
* Learn skills like Staying in Bounds to make sure that each student
* Make comprehensible input the foundation of your success.
* Establish trust in your classroom.
Ben comments on his newest book:
Just as "TPRS in a Year!" is about stories and
"PQA in a Wink!" is
about personalization, my new book shows how to start out the year
using comprehensible input.
I see it as the third leg of a stool that is necessary for the stool
to stand up. I wrote the books in the reverse order that they were
really needed: we need easy stuff to start the year, next we need to
learn how to personalize, adding stories at the end.
"Exactly What I'm Looking For!"
"The book is exactly what I have been looking for. I have always
wondered if stories are the best way to start out. After reading a
few pages, I realized that there are other much easier ways of
providing comprehensible input by focusing on the students, not on a
story. This is exactly what I need. Thank you!"
Tashkent University of Information Technologies
"I'm a Latin teacher jumping into a CI approach this year after many
years of teaching according to traditional methods.
I recently read Stepping Stones to Stories!and found it incredibly
helpful, and I'm sure it will prove very useful as the year
progresses. Many thanks for your excellent work!"
"Twice The Impact Of A Multi-Day
"Stepping Stones has twice the impact of a multi-day ci/tprs
conference. Reading it in late-August helped me establish, in
those precious first days, a rapport and procedure that are putting
my year on a whole new level.
A problem has been lurking in the CI/TPRS community for some time.
All-star teachers showcase the power of TPRS with flare, wit and
Hollywood charisma, making disbelievers believe. But, the focus for
a would-be practitioner soon becomes the story and the superstar
personality that delivered it. "There is too much involved and it
doesn't fit my personality anyway - I could never do those antics or
be so entertaining."
Stepping Stones has leveled the playing field by systematically
translating CI theory into CI teaching - with ANY personality. It
will give any new practitioner confidence to move forward. And it
may very well become standard late-August reading for new and
veteran practitioners alike."
Liam O' Neill
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After your purchase you will be able to
download the PDF version of the book.
Read The First 15 Pages!
Click the link below to read the first 15
pages of the book.
first 15 pages - click here!
"Written For All Who Have Struggled
"I just read several pages of the beginning of your new book and
can't wait to continue.
I'm so glad you've done the work of articulating all this for new
people like me. This stuff is awesome."
"This Book Is Fantastic!"
"This book is fantastic! I am so glad that I have it to use with
my methods class at the University of Georgia.
In my instruction I typically include a section on the core
principles of comprehensible input and why each one matters. But you
have it all right here in your book! Stunning. Mind-blowing! Hooray!
This is the book I am going to insist that people buy as "what to do
next" in their work as they move into comprehension based language
instruction in their own classrooms."
Robert Patrick, M.Div, PhD
"I Am Loving Your New Book!"
Thank you for the opportunity to be in your workshop at the iFLT
conference. I left your room everyday with so much information, and
And I am loving this new book! The workshop, you're writing, it is
inspiring. School starts Friday, and I am excited! Thank you!
"I Feel More Confident..."
Stepping Stones to Stories! was an excellent and highly informative
read – the perfect book to read before starting a TPRS/TCI program.
I feel more confident that I'll be beginning the year right and I
always have the books' chapters to refer to whenever I need. It's
like the fundamental posts of the PLC condensed into one place.
"I've been reading your book...Wonderful!"
"I am reading your Stepping Stones and ordering your videos to
watch at night after I put my kids to bed. I guess I just wanted to
say….thanks for being so real."