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TPR (Total Physical Response) is a commonly suggested method for teaching

foreign language. With TPR, the teacher uses the target language and
models related body movements to teach verbs and related vocabulary. For
example, the teacher runs in place while saying the word for runs in the
target language. The students then listen for the word and perform the
movement.

Every teacher implements TPR differently based on the age,


language level, interests, and participation of the students. I used
TPR every week with my students so here are a few hints for making it work
in your classroom.
1. TPR can involve everyone moving around the room or it can be a
simple seated activity with only hand gestures. My sixth graders loved
whole-body movement and silliness while my high schools students
preferred hand gestures and pointing to objects.
2. TPR does not require command forms of the verbs. We used
narrative forms (the class runs, the class jumps, the class points to the door)
because those forms are more commonly taught by teachers and used by
beginning students. You can even use past tenses to talk about what the
class already did or future tenses to describe what the class is going to do.
3. Use fun props to practice verbs like "to throw" and "to eat". "She
throws the purple monkey" is simply more fun to say and practice than "she
throws the ball". Props also encourage the addition of adjectives (such as the
purple monkey) and more complex sentences (She throws the purple
monkey to her friend and then laughs). Three types of practice for the price
of one!
4. After students feel comfortable hearing and performing the movements,
allow them to lead the class. You can also easily transition into reading
and writing stories using the TPR vocabulary.
Whether you have tried TPR before or just heard about this method, check
out these resources for utilizing TPR in your classroom.