Here is a nice report from Keri Colwell:
I just wanted to tell you that yesterday I taught my very first two classes using your methods and they both went very well (Spanish III and Italian III). Surprisingly, my class of juniors laughed and seem to enjoy the CWB even more!!! I trusted the process in my Italian III…not any students were actually into sports so I chose “Jakeplays videogames” and I actually spend 30 MINUTES on this!! It turned into “Jake plays Super Mario Brothers in his backpack with Arianna Grande only on the weekends at 8:00 in the morning….and that they play videogames in his backpack because he hides her so his mom doesn’t see her!” So, I think this could have certainly become a story… I had Jake in front of class with his backpack, Ariana Grande there and also Jake’s mom. I had them do a very quick dialog with his mom asking him what was in the backpack…but I stopped it…However, where could I have gone from there??
My Spanish class went well also but was strickly PQA…no potential stories or actors. I was able to talk about 2 students in 30 minutes since interest seemed to dwindle a bit. However, Jake, the football player, “plays football in the pool at night with Peyton Manning in the summer and Jake is much better than Peyton. My other student, Emma, plays basketball in the bathroom at Stop & Shop with her cat.” So, these don’t have to turn into stories, right?
During CWB in both classes I trained them how to react and for all to react. They seemed to get the hang of the “game” pretty quickly! Some may need a little work…but nothing that CWB can’t do if focused on them next class! After CWB, I gave them the questionnaire and we did three ring circus. On the spot I thought of quickly writing up the “mini-stories” we created together in PQA session on the computer and displayed it when they were done with their questionnaires. Then, I had a student read in English while seeing the Spanish. Then I shut off the projector and had a student do a quick retell! They did great and were very proud of themselves. We all clapped. Since my PQA session with my Spanish class wasn’t as long as with my Italian class, I had about 10 minutes for OWI and we transformed a student into a small blue and yellow bird that was sick because he ate his hair.
Thank you so much! The kids had fun and so did I! I just hope I don’t get stuck when it comes to stories and I also hope that CWB doesn’t get boring for them if I am to get to everyone. But I figure 1-2 a day is fine…I just don’t always want to use “plays” as the focus as it could get redundant, right?
Looking back, I should have given them a quick quiz today on the information but it’s too late…
I appreciate any feedback you have for me!!! I will be teaching my three other classes tomorrow (2 Spanish III’s and 1 Italian III)