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Total Physical Response (TPR). "Babies don't learn by memorizing lists; why should children or adults?". Total Physical Response (TPR). What is TPR?.

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total physical response tpr

Total Physical Response (TPR)

"Babies don't learn by memorizing lists;why should children or adults?"

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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • What is TPR?

TPR is an approach to teaching a second language, based on listening linked to physical activities which are designed to reinforce comprehension.

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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • A little more on TPR . . .

Total Physical Response (TPR) is a method developed by Dr. James J. Asher to aid learning second languages.

The method relies on the assumption that when learning a second or additional language, that language is internalized through a process of code-breaking similar to first language development

Students respond to commands that require physical movement. TPR is primarily intended for ESL teacher, although the method is used in teaching other languages as well.

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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • What is the connection to the classroom?
  • TPR is not always dancing and singing songs! Generally, we refer to body movement with instruction to engage learners.
  • Students learn by identifying a certain key point to some action.
  • TPR can be used for all curriculum, literacy, science, math, and so on.
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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • What are advantages of TPR?
  • Fun and Easy: Students enjoy activity!
  • Simple TPR activities do not require a great deal of preparation on the part of the teacher.
  • TPR is inclusive and works well a class with mixed ability levels.
  • Good for kinesthetic learners who need to be active in class.
  • Good tool for building vocabulary.
  • Actions help build connections in the brain.
  • Helps learners achieve fluency faster by immersing learners in activities that involve them in situational language use.
  • Good instructional practice for ESL’s intheir silent period.
  • Works well for child and adult learners.
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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • What are disadvantages of TPR?
  • Most useful for beginners.
  • Preparation becomes an issue for teachers at higher levels.
  • Students are not generally given the opportunity to express their own thought in as creative manner.
  • It is easy to over use TPR and begin to bore students.
  • May limit teachers in term of scope of language that can be addressed.
  • Can be a major challenge for shy students.
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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • Who benefits most from TPR?
  • TPR seems to work effectively for children and adults. There is no age barrier. The only setback is that if the language training starts after puberty, the probability is almost certain that one will have at least some accent in speaking the second language, no matter how many years one lives in the foreign country. http://www.tprsource.com/asher.htm
  • English speaking students who have little academic reinforcement at home.
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Total Physical Response(TPR)
  • Who benefits most (cont . . .)
  • Struggling students
  • Teachers are noticing growth in students learning, and boosting the academic levels in their classrooms.
total physical response tpr example of activity
Total Physical Response (TPR) Example of Activity

This is an example of an effective TPR activity that students can perform at their seats. Each student has a kit such as the interior of a kitchen. Then you say in the target language, "Put the man in front of the sink.“ With your play board displayed so that it is clearly visible to the students, you place the man in the kitchen of your kit and your students follow by performing the same action in their kits.

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Total Physical Response (TPR)

50 Strategies for Teaching English Language Learners,

Chapter 11 – Integrating Movement into Language Acquisition

“In first-language learners, children acquire receptive language before they attempt to speak, they develop understanding through moving their bodies and they are not forced to speak until they are ready”

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Total Physical Response (TPR)

Step by Step(steps for teaching TPR lesson)

1. Choose physical vocabulary,

- ex. Stand up, show me the door, (language used in the classroom)

2. Introduce vocabulary gradually

- Start with 3 & randomly use

3. Drop the physical modeling

4. Add additional commands

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Total Physical Response (TPR)

Step by Step(steps for teaching TPR lesson)

5. Add additional responses

-Find new ways for students to display their

understanding of vocabulary, ex. draw picture

6. Play games for additional practice

- only when students gain confidence

7. Assess student progress & understanding

(easy to visually assess, make a checklist)