This article is about the TPR method or active English lessons for children. In this article it is spoken about the method which is developed for different age categories. Pros TPR are also given.
Keywords: the method, developed, different, age, categories, teaching, adults, TPR, elements, combination, lessons, excellent.
Эта статья о методе TPR или активных уроках английского языка для детей. Говорится о самой методике, которая разработана для разных возрастных категорий, а также о плюсах ее использования.
Ключевые слова: метод, разработанный, разный, возраст, категории, обучение, взрослые, TPR, элементы, комбинации, уроки, отлично
The President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoev pays great attention in teaching foreign languages. Using interesting games help our children to learn English with great interest, that’s why we English teachers should know how to use such kind of games at the English lessons.
One of the best method for them is TPR method.(Total Physical Response or the method of complete physical response) appeared in the 60–70s of the last century and has since occupied a special place in teaching English to preschoolers and younger students, although it was originally intended for adults. And he appeared like this: Psychology professor James Asher, watching the children learn the first language, noticed that they spend quite a lot of time listening to the speech of adults and executing their commands before they themselves begin to speak. Asher concluded that words or phrases are best remembered when they are acted upon by actions.
How TPR works: In essence, the TPR method is the memorization of new words or phrases using gestures or performing commands from a teacher. For example, the word ball — the ball, the children depict a gesture, as if playing with the ball, the word pen — pen — they pretend to write an imaginary pen, etc.
Indeed, children memorize English words and phrases much better when their study is supported by gestures. After all, preschoolers and schoolchildren of 7–8 years old are dominated by visual-figurative thinking.
Therefore, translation is not necessary and even harmful to use — for the time being, abstract-logical thinking has not been developed to draw parallels between Uzbek and English children. In order to memorize a new word to a child, it is necessary to relate this word to its image — an object, a picture or a gesture, in which TPR helps us.
Initially, the method was developed for different age categories, but, for obvious reasons, it took root only in teaching children. Imagine adults enthusiastically fulfilling the commands that the teacher gives (below there is such a video — but, as you understand, this is rather an exception). But for children, the use of TPR elements in combination with other methods in English lessons is excellent.
Pros TPR in teaching children: In children, involuntary memorization prevails — that which is fun and interesting is best remembered. Therefore, they enjoy playing the role of a teacher and giving commands, or gesturing words that their classmates should guess, or play Simon says.
With the help of TPR you can play almost any story or song from the textbook and with gestures it will be remembered much better. TPR can be used even in large classes.
In modern school, the method of full physical response, as a rule, is not used, however, we believe that it will be the most effective in teaching the language of primary school students. We believe that this method can not only improve the quality of education, but also increase the motivation to learn a foreign language. Traditionally, foreign language lessons in elementary school are full of games that help maintain motivation to learn, and as a result, better learning.
The TPR method is good because it looks like a game in itself. In a typical TPR lesson, students do not sit still, but they constantly move, gesticulate, draw, work with cards and toys. J. Asher developed the TPR method as a result of his experience, observing how young children learn their first language. He noted that the interaction between parents and children often represents a speech from the parent, and then a physical response from the child. J. Asher put forward three hypotheses based on his observations: first, children learn the language, first of all, listening; secondly, language learning should affect the right brain; and, thirdly, when learning a language, there should be no stressful situations. When should TPR be applied? The basic rule of TPR: you cannot understand what you did not do yourself. In the classroom, students are not passive listeners; they are actively involved in the educational process: they repeat words, phrases with different intonations, movements, invent their own games, and dance. Verbs of motion thus learn with a bang. This memorization involves visual-figurative thinking and does not require additional explanations or parallels with the native language; it suffices to recall the word and the gesture or picture that characterizes it. TPR can and should be used to solve many problems: work out the vocabulary associated with movements (go, smile, bow, jump) and body parts (head, nose, eye, back); activate temporary constructions (Every morning I get up, I wash my face, I make breakfast); learn expressions to cool everyday life and team (Open your books, stand up, close you eyes); stage stories and stories; for relaxation and change of activity during physical stress.
How does the TPR method look like in action? For example, you can stage a famous fairy tale about the Gingerbread Man by learning a lot of new words along the way. For clarity, you can make figures with cardboard, plasticize or dough together with your children. Or you can learn a warm-up song Head and Shoulders:
Head and Shoulders,
Knees and toes, knees and toes,
Head and Shoulders,
Knees and toes, knees and toes,
TPR activities are very motivating to young learners. They make the classroom a better place to study in. TPR activities should be conducted on a daily basis in class.
- James J. Asher. The Total Physical Response Approach to Second Language Learning.: The Modern Language Journal, Vol. 53, No. 1 (Jan., 1969), pp. 3–17
- James J. Asher. Language by command. The Total Physical Response approach to learning language // The way of learning, 1984, p. 35.
- Shin, J. K. (2014). Teaching Young Language Learners: From theory to practice. Boston: Heinle, Cengage Learning.