NTPRS - tprstories

Karen Rowan is an author and speaker on TPRS®


What was the National TPR Storytelling® Conference?

NTPRS is a training workshop for foreign language and ELA / ESL teachers in the methodology Teaching Proficiency Through Reading and Storytelling (formerly known as Total Physical Response Storytelling). It includes training workshops for beginning and advanced TPRS teachers. Teachers are given the opportunity to learn a language through TPRS by taking Fluency Fast classes in Spanish or French within the conference. All teachers are coached in TPRS and have an opportunity to practice using the method during the week-long conference.

The July 15-18th pre-conference is a 4 day Fluency Fast seminar with beginning classes for members of the general public and immersion classes for foreign language teachers to improve their own language skills. Beginning, Intermediate and Advanced Spanish, French, Mandarin, Arabic, German and Russian have all been offered in the past. This year’s line-up will be announced in November. Click on the Fluency Fast Students After 15 Hours Link to the left to get a better idea of what to expect from beginning classes. This year’s pre-conference in San Antonio has been cancelled.

What have previous conferences been like?

Check out our handouts, class video clips and photos from the 2008 conference in Minneapolis by clicking the links on the left.

Most people who have attended agree that it is the friendliest foreign language conference in existence. New teachers find mentors, experienced teachers find peers, many people find lifetime friends and resources. Presenters are accessible. Coaching is available after hours. It’s a shot in the arm before school starts again and, with the help of the moretprs listserv ( Join moretprs ), teachers have continuous support from peers throughout the following year.

“This conference was everything I’ve heard it would be and more!”

Las Vegas, 2004

“This was the quintessential professional development experience of my 25 years of teaching.”

Kansas City, 2005

Who has presented in the past at NTPRS?

Carmen Andrews-Sanchez, AP Spanish Teach, Upper levels presenter and TPRS Workshop presenter, Las Vegas.

Jason Fritze, National Board Certified Spanish teacher, Fluency Fast Spanish teacher, author of En Espanol‘s TPRS Supplement and member of California’s Project Coach, Orange County, CA;

Carol Gaab, Spanish teacher, owner of TPRS Publishing and elementary TPRS methods expert;

Susan Gross, French teacher and TPRS trainer, Colorado Springs, CO;

Dr. Stephen Krashen, language acquisition expert, professor emeritus, USC and author of hundreds of books on language acquisition.

Linda Li, Mandarin and English teacher and author of the I Love Learning Chinese series, Bankok, Thailand;

Michael Miller, German teacher and author of the Sabine und Michael German series, Colorado Springs, CO;

Diana Noonan, French teacher and World Languages Director of Denver PublicSchools, Denver, CO;

Blaine Ray, inventor of TPR Storytelling.

Von Ray, former Spanish teacher. Office manager for Blaine Ray Workshops.

Karen Rowan, Spanish teacher and director of Fluency Fast Language Classes, Inc and author of Pearson / Prentice Hall’s Paso a paso and Realidades TPRS supplements, Colorado Springs, CO;

Donna Tatum-Johns, French teacher and assistant principal, Louisville, KY;

How do I register?

Contact Blaine Ray Workshops.

How much does it cost?

This is a unique conference, created and run by foreign language and ELA teachers from across the world. Costs are kept as low as possible. Registration generally runs about $400 for the main conference and $200 for the pre-conference, not including room and board. Prices will be set after the hotel location is confirmed.

Where should I stay?

Most people stay at the hotel where the conference is taking place (information forthcoming) or a hotel nearby.

Can I get university credit?

We will provide you with a certificate of completion. In addition, you can purchase credit hours through the University of the Pacific for approximately $62 per credit hour.

Who can I call with questions?

For the 2009 conference in San Antonio, call Blaine Ray Workshops, 888-373-1920.

What is TPRS?

TPR Storytelling is a foreign language teaching methodology. TPR Storytelling (TPRS) teachers tell personalized stories in their foreign language or English as a Second language classrooms as their students act those stories out.

Students comprehend the stories by virtue of the live action visual aids and acquire the target vocabulary because it is repeated dozens of times within the daily story. Sentence structure, vocabulary and grammar are acquired because non-stop comprehensible input is provided by the teacher.

TPR Storytelling is used by thousands of elementary school, middle school, high school, college and adult education English as a Second Language, English as a Foreign Language and Foreign Language teachers nationally and internationally. The long-term memory strategies, constant comprehensible input and intense personalization of this methodology are based on the pedagogy of Dr. James Asher (TPR) and Dr. Stephen Krashen (The Natural Approach). TPR Storytelling is similar to Classical TPR, except that the 3 Steps of TPRS® allow students to acquire the narrative and descriptive, rather than the imperative, modes of speech. The goal of TPRS® is to make students fluent and proficient in a second language through ample exposure to interesting, comprehensible input. TPRS® teachers direct their efforts toward their students, rather than the textbook, the grammar or the curriculum. We teach kids. As a result, we have students who are excited about foreign languages, eager to stay in our classes all the way through school…. and who are bilingual.

TPR Storytelling begins with introducing the vocabulary (step 1). Students then act out the stories as the teacher tells (or, more accurately, “asks”) re-tells and asks questions about a story that uses the vocabulary words (step 2). The oral story is then followed up with reading (step 3). The best way to learn more about TPRS is to read Fluency Through TPR Storytelling, by Blaine Ray and Contee Seely. Students rapidly acquire the second language just as Dr. Krashen imagined: effortlessly and involuntarily. The method relies heavily on the five hypotheses of The Natural Approach: the acquisition hypothesis, the input hypothesis, the natural order hypothesis, the affective filter hypothesis and the monitor hypothesis, which are explained in detail in Foreign Language Education The Easy Way, by Dr. Stephen Krashen, as well as lots of comprehensible input through access to books. Find out more about TPRS.

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