are some TPRS workshop handouts that Ben frequently uses.
Download them for FREE! (Handouts are in Adobe Acrobat PDF
A Note from Dr. Beniko Mason:
Dr. Beniko Mason is a professor at Shitennoji University in Osaka,
Japan. She has known and worked with Dr. Stephen Krashen for over
fifteen years and fully embraces his Comprehensible Input
Hypothesis. I was honored that she visited my classroom last week
(May, 2010). Here is a short email she sent back to me, which is
then followed by the text of an email she wrote to Dr. Krashen
describing what she saw in my classroom:
Dear Professor Ben Slavic, Mr. Comprehensible Input!,
Thank you so much for letting me come to your classes and sit and
observe your wonderful comprehension based French classes! I wrote
to Steve Krashen right away and he is pleased that I had met you and
saw your classes. He told me that he respects you.
When I went to class to teach this morning, I thought about you and
your classes. You have taught me something very very valuable about
Now, this is [the email] I sent to Steve:
"I met Diana Noonan, World Languages Coordinator in Curriculum and
Instruction Department for Denver Public Schools. She is one of the
organizers for the first international conference of the
International Forum on Language Teaching (July 27 - 31, 2010. Los
Alamitos, CA). She took me to Ben Slavic’s French classes for me to
As I had been to one TPRS workshop about 10 years ago and recently
experienced a TPRS Spanish workshop led by a Japanese teacher in
Japan, I was expecting to see something similar in Ben’s class. But
it was quite different.
Ben is a French teacher. There were twenty-five or thirty ninth
graders in class. It was entirely done in French except when he had
to quickly explain something to make the input more comprehensible,
only then English was used.
Students were fully engaged in the listening activity. Those who
were chosen to act out on the floor and those who were in chairs
responding to Ben’s yes/no/who/etc. questions were perfectly well
behaved and enjoying and responding promptly.
Ben’s French never stopped. French was spoken continuously for the
entire class time. There was no conscious skill-based repetition, or
drilling, and although there was some form-focused noticing
activity, it was done to help input or questions more
Students responded promptly with yes or no with friendly laughter,
and eventually with a word or a sentence voluntarily.
When unexpected learning was observed, Ben would have the students
applaud and I saw one student smirk with satisfaction. Such a thing
would not have happened unless the student was listening all the
time, paying attention to what the teacher was saying in French.
Ben has a set of rules for students to obey and one of them was that
students must do their 50%. A lot of care was taken to make students
comfortable by the way Ben talked to them, and the way he treated
them, and he created just enough tension not by scolding them in a
loud voice, but instead speaking quietly to maintain students’
preferable classroom behavior. They were wonderful classes!"
Beniko Mason, Ed. D.
Shitennoji University Junior College
3-2-1 Gakuenmae, Habikino-shi, Osaka, JAPAN