Storytelling for Language Acquisition

Author: Patricia Rich


The U School

Year: 2019

Seminar: Storytelling Traditions of South Asia and the Middle East

Grade Level: 11

Keywords: Asian literature, Foreign Language, language acquisition, storytelling

School Subject(s): Languages

The stars are the apexes of what wonderful triangles! —H. D. Thoreau

This unit is developed around a Turkish folktale. It is written for first year Spanish
students, but the materials can easily be adapted for any level and any language. There
are also lesson materials here, developed around an Iranian legend, for another unit for
second year Spanish students.

The purpose of this curriculum unit is twofold. First, it seeks to foster new
language acquisition through reading and storytelling. For years I have appreciated the
versatility of Blaine Ray’s method of Teaching Proficiency through Reading and
Storytelling (TPRS)1 in my German and Spanish classrooms, and in keeping with the
TPRS method, I will be writing a Spanish curriculum unit tangential to Ray’s approach.
Students who have been learning with TPRS will be comfortable with these assignments,
and students new to TPRS will enjoy the creative freedom and the satisfying results of
their own storytelling.

Second, this unit provides an adventure into Asian literature. As such, it yields a
delightfully hybrid product: eastern stories in a western language. An intentional
departure from Eurocentric instruction, the curriculum unit does not have the prerequisite
that students arrive in class already familiar with Anglo-Saxon stories and legends, to the
chagrin of those unacquainted. On the contrary, these assignments will affirm an
underrepresented few, and tantalize the curious.

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Full Unit Text
Content Objectives

This unit is developed around a Turkish folktale. It is written for first year Spanish students, but the materials can easily be adapted for any level and any language. There are also lesson materials here, developed around an Iranian legend, for another unit for second year Spanish students. The purpose of this curriculum unit is twofold. First, it seeks to foster new language acquisition through reading and storytelling.For years I have appreciated the versatility of Blaine Ray’s method of Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling (TPRS)1in my German and Spanish classrooms, and in keeping with the TPRS method,I will be writing a Spanish curriculum unit tangential to Ray’s approach. Students who have been learning with TPRS will be comfortable with these assignments, and students new to TPRS will enjoy the creative freedom and the satisfying results of their own storytelling.Second,this unit provides an adventure into Asian literature. As such, it yields a delightfully hybrid product: eastern stories in a western language.An intentional departure from Eurocentric instruction, the curriculum unit does not have the prerequisite that students arrive in class already familiar with Anglo-Saxon stories and legends,to the chagrin of those unacquainted. On the contrary, these assignments will affirm an underrepresented few, and tantalize the curious.Problem Statement Admirably,the School District of Philadelphia requires two credits of world language for graduation, but students typically begin language study much later than is developmentally optimal. Ideally, second language study begins in elementary school, once literacy skills in the first language are well established, and it is most successful with a sequential foreign language curriculum in elementary school, sequential FLES.2As sequential FLES programs compete with other disciplines for budget dollars and instructional time, they are not the norm. In fact, elementary world language programs have been on the decline for decades. Secondary language programs, also on the decline, are often begun in earnest in middle school, the level one textbook in a series being written for eighth or ninth grade students.31 Gladys Lipton’s Practical Handbook to Elementary Foreign Language Programs.3

Where I teach, the problem is compounded. While it is widely accepted that foreign language study is best begun in elementary school, and secondary texts are written for early adolescents, our students are not rostered for Spanish until tenth grade. Before that, humanities is the priority, perhaps out of an urgency to raise English literacy levels as soon as possible. Only ten percent of our students have proficient scores on the English Language Arts/Literature Keystone Examination.4With little descriptive command of English grammar and syntax, many of our students havevno frame of reference, and scant prior knowledge with which to engage a conventional textbook approach to language learning. As it happens, there is insufficient funding for Spanish textbooks. And since the budget also does not provide for enough teaching staff, course levels1 and 2 have been collapsed from a full year to one semester each.Content Objectives Still the expectations are high.I teach in an innovative high school in the School District of Philadelphia’s Innovation Network. Here teachers design their own project-based units of instruction. Units of study are posted on Google Classroom. Coursework is mainly project based and assessment is on competency. In language class, students are asked to demonstrate proficiency by producing spoken and written presentations in Spanish.Course content defers to skill acquisition.And with a contextual reading and storytelling method, language teachers can create effective curriculum units based on a wide range of literature and topics.Given our budget constraints and the language acquisition readiness of my students, the most workable instructional approach is through reading and storytelling. As it turns out,this most pragmatic option nevertheless proves to be most effective in the short term.Secondary students who learn a language with a contextual reading and storytelling approach have a good foundation with which to begin post-secondary language class down the road with a traditional text book.Language teachers make a distinction between language learning and language acquisition.5The traditional language pedagogy methods such as grammar-translation result in the learning of language content in a long preamble to language skill acquisition. It makes sense that the use of vocabulary lists and flash cards, studying parts of a sentence, and memorizing endings will prioritize the ability to recall words and manipulate their forms. Ironically,the vocabulary list, often crammed, is stashed in short-term memory and soon forgotten, and grammar instruction without foundation is a losing battle as well. But when language teachers can relax their loyalty to content and grammar rules,then authentic language acquisition can be the priority.The same is true in other 4 and Terrell,1995.

skill-based disciplines. In mathematics, for example, the ability to count or memorize multiplication tables is not the same as numeracy.Memorization is not the enemy, however. On the contrary, the ability to recall vocabulary is the nuts and bolts of language expression. But it does make a difference how the words are acquired. Once the new vocabulary is introduced as a set of lexical items, the storytelling method seeks immediately to replicate the language acquisition process of our first language, and fix the words in context with a functional-notional approach. The key is to radically shorten the time spent on introducing vocabulary and jump right into weaving narrative. As a result, the short-term memorization of discrete words is bypassed, and students will own the new language for keep

Teaching Strategies

Two outcomes are expected from each storytelling unit: to be able to retell a simple story in Spanish, and then to create an original variation of that story, in Spanish, with a minimum (three recommended) of additional vocabulary words.Through chunking, scaffolding, and personalizing, students will experience volumes of comprehensible input in the newlanguage.Students will use a simple method to tell what they see and what they know, then break from the exemplar to create anoriginal variation.Authentic language skill will be fostered through Personalized Questions and Answers (PQA). Repeating and recombining the vocabulary in contextandthrough item substitutionwill multiply the volume of comprehensible input. In conference with individual students, as the speaking and writing presentations are nearing completion, the counseling-learning method is employed toundergird language acquisition with confidence and resilience. Formative activities employprops, realia, and gestures, and the culminating activity will result in short stories, skits, puppet shows, videos, re-enactments, orother demonstrations.Once students have acquired a vocabulary of a hundred words or so, they have a sense of how much they can already say, and of thenewvocabulary they will needto tell the story in front of them, or indeedwhatever new story they wish. Having completed even one or two stories from BlaineRay’s Look I Can Talk!,a student can listthe old words (in Spanish) torecycle for a new story in the target language, plusthe words(in English) that must belearnedfrom scratch.A vocabulary list is provided below for each of two sample stories. Three new words per day are introducedfor the first week of the unit. It is normal to want to enrich the story with additional words, but resist the temptation. Cognates, opposites, and new forms of old words are good choices for additional vocabulary, if necessary, as they are easily internalized. Ideally there will be fifteen to a maximum of twenty new words necessary to tell the new story. When preparing a new unit vocabulary list, determine the words needed to tell the new story, keeping in mind the vocabulary that students know

from previous lessons. Use a KWL chart to organize old and new vocabulary. Decide in advance the words to be taught with Total Physical Response (TPR)hand signalsor gestures. Cognates can be introduced and employed with few repetitions and will therefore not need hand signals. The word for any item or picture of an item that you have in the classroom likewise will not need a hand signal.For the TPR activities, choose gestures that will communicate clearly to everyone in the room, and use them consistently throughout the unit. Use your own, or have the students come up with ones that make sense to them. Make sure there is no double entendre, and watch out for gestures that have an off-color meaning in another culture.6When planning, consider American Sign Language gestures, but make sure to choose a hand signalthat is most intuitive. Also, be careful not to make a secondary goal of learning sign language. Remember that TPR is a means to instill the target language whichbypasses the entire task of translation.Translation may beused briefly as a check for understanding, and otherwiseonly sparingly as an art separate from language acquisition.Prepare the room by setting the scene for the story. Have students create asmany of the props as possible. With tape, makea path on the floor on which to act out the story, and affix scenery to the wall using butcher paper. To designate the blocking for a story re-tell, fasten landmarksto the floor with clear contact paper for everyspotthe action of the story takes place. For the rabbit story, mark the location of the rock, the duck’s home, etc. Crumple a length of butcher paper into a ball to make the large rock.A storyboard is provided to accompany the rabbit story. Feel free to use it, or create your own. Each newstory should have a storyboard to track the action of the narrative. It should be clear, sequential, and freeof text. It doesn’t have to be beautiful; stick figures are fine. Rough drawings and startlingstory plots actually motivatestudents to create their own story variations.Draw or find a storyboard ofsix to eight panels. Print out a copy for each student. If possible,make a poster-sized enlargement of it and post it at the front of the class.(I actually pull it off the wall and carry it around the room as I tell the story, pointing to each detail asI go.) Alternatively, project the storyboard on the wall.

Classroom Activities

The first story below is adapted from “The Rabbit and the Wolf” in Barbara K. Walker’s A Treasury of Turkish Folktalesfor Children.As the curator of the Turkish Oral Archivehoused at Texas Tech University, Walker had at her disposalthousands of tales recordedduring her research in Turkey. In the collection there are numerous short stories, riddles, 6For the meanings of some gestures in other cultures, see Conaway,Wayne A. and Terri Morrison. Kiss, Bow, Or Shake Hands: The Bestselling Guide to Doing Business in MoreThan 60 Countries.

as well asstories several pages long that maybe adaptedfor use in the Spanishlanguageclassroom. In theadaptation below, the entire story is kept in the present tense and limited mainly to vocabulary familiar to Spanish students in the first semester of study. It could be simplified further in order to accommodate individualstudents, or enriched for heritage speakers. In fact, heritage speakers may want to flesh out the story further themselves as they demonstrate their writing proficiency.Day 1: Having chosen the first three wordsto introduce, prepare short PQA questionswith which to practice. You will need dry erase boards and markers, storyboards, and KWL charts. The KWL charts may beeither printed on the back of the storyboard, or ready online. Hand out a storyboard paper to each student. Ask them what they see. “¿Qué ven ustedes?”Write the individual Spanish words in a list on the board. These will be mainly old vocabulary words that will be recycled into the new story. Next, ask them what they know. “¿Qué saben ustedes?”or “¿Qué sabemos?”This question should elicit short sentences, for example, “Hay un animal.”Write these down in another list.Using pictures or signals(TPR), teach the three new words, perhaps conejo, lobo, and roca. Write them on the board or on chart paper, and keep them in a place where they will not be erased for at least two weeks. Heritage speakers may want to suggest piedra. It’s fine to have a conversation in English about the word field surrounding each.Check for understanding. Each student should be able to identify each itemout loud in Spanish. With a brisk pace, but no too fast, build up to three words in a row, then change the order of the three. Add gato and perroto the mix.Next give students two minutes to quiz their partners. Time the activity.Then at aslower pace, and using dry erase boards, ask students draw what you say. Check for understanding, and clarify in English as needed. Let students show each other their work. Start simple, and build in complexity. Dibuja un conejo y dos rocas.Dibuja una roca grande y una pequeña.Dibuja un lobo encima de una roca. Mix in old vocabulary. Dibuja un lobo al lado de una casa. Get silly. Dibuja un conejo con tres orejas.You will know immediatelywhether they have understood.Finally, take a volunteer or two to tell the class what to draw.By the end of this activity, most students should know most words. It will be clear who needs more practice. Refocus the class on the storyboard. Have them write all the words they might use to describe the pictures in the first column of the KWL chart. These are words they already know in Spanish. For students who are lagging, refer to the lists on the board. Then take another look at the storyboard and brainstorm for new vocabulary still needed

to string the story together. These words go in the second column in English. (The third column is for their own story variation later on.)This KWL chart is not yet a comprehensive vocabulary list, but it will help students organize their story material and demonstratetheir effort. A comprehensive vocabularylist may be provided at the end of the first week for students who need that security. Thatmay be all of them.Lastly, put materials aside and spend at least five minutes using personalized questions and answers (PQA). Ask a question; wait a beat; and call on a strong student. “¿Tienes un gato/perro?” Repeat the question and call on more students, including those who struggled with the dry erase board activity. Using item substitution, switch up the questions. “¿Tienes un conejo?” “¿Tienes un lobo?” “¿Tienes una mascota?”“¿Qué clase de animal tienes encasa?”“¿Cómo se llama tu lobo?”The Spanish sentences given for the above activities will be too elementary for some classes, and you will know best the range of abilities in your own classes. Prepare phrasesto suit your needs in advanceon index cards.Write the PQA questions on chart paper and post them on the back wall of the classroom.Day 2: You will need the same materials as Day 1.You have prepared PQA questions and the phrases for the dry erase board activity. The activities will follow the samesequence as yesterday.Review yesterday’s words with TPR. Immediately refer to the storyboard, and see how much the class as a whole can describe of the first two panels. Ask, “¿Qué ven ustedes?” and “¿Quésabemos?”Take student input and begin to tell a simple story: Hay un conejo. Camina por la selva. Oye un lobo…Note that the story that studentstell will always be simpler than the story in the boxbelow. The story in the box is material for reading comprehension, not a model for speaking proficiency. The difference is that speakingproficiency is always a step below reading comprehension. Explain to the students that this is the case for every person at every level of every subject. We all comprehend more than wecan express. For this reason, a new language learner will never be expected to tell the story at the level of the story in the box. The new language learner’s goal is to express complete thoughts in good beginner Spanish, and every student’s story will bea little different from the next. If the student doesreplicate that storyin the box, the submission is either copied or memorized, and as such it would be ungradable.Having chosen the next three vocabulary words, perhapsayúdame, morir, andespalda, introduce them with TPR or pictures.Write them on the board under yesterday’s words. Remember that for chunking to be helpful, it is best to avoid adding additional words. Today, however, it might makesense to teach muere along with morir, and ayudaalong with ayúdame.Check for comprehension and briefly clarify in English when

necessary.Mix in yesterday’s words. Add words from previous units. Have students turn and talk, quizzing each other for two minutes. Then take a volunteer or two to quiz the class.Use the dry erase boards as before. El conejo tiene una roca en la espalda. Ellobo tiene una roca enorme en la cabeza. Build in complexity. Use students’ ideas to add an element of unpredictability. The more unpredictable thephrases are, the more confident and authentic the acquisition is. Check for comprehension, and take note of the students who do not understand every word.Set aside all materials, and with the whole class, use the PQA questions that you have prepared. Keep the momentum goingwith strong students, but loop in the slower students again and again, until they are confident and pleased with their learning.Refer back to the storyboard, and start telling the story again. Take suggestions. Hay un conejoblanco. Un díacamina por laselva. Oye un lobo, per no ve al lobo. Ask the PQA questionsthat you have posted for yourself on the back wall.Students may or may not notice these, but it doesn’t matter. They are for you. “¿De qué color es el conejo?” “Cómo se llama?” “¿Adónde va el conejo?” “¿Qué piensa el conejo?”Complete a little more of the story and foreshadow the ending. Begin the storyone last time. Enlist student volunteers. Then have students work in pairs to tell the first two thirds of the story so that every student hashad a chance to speak. Finally, with the class, complete a little more of the story and foreshadow the ending.Day 3: Having chosenthree new words, add them to the list on the board. Having prepared the PQA questions, scaffold the lesson as before.Review the first six words with TPR. Immediately turn to the storyboard and tell as much of the story as can be told as of now. Take student input. Name the characters after students in the room. Switch the characters around. Come up with synonymous expressions. Hay un lobo que camina por la selva. Se llama Quamir. Quamir oye una voz fuerte, pero no sabe que pasa.De repente ataca al lobo un conejo. Le tira una roca grande en la espalda.Teach the three new words. Scaffold learning with TPR, turn and talk,and employlistening comprehension activities. Increase the time spent with students speaking and leading.Students will readthe first two paragraphs of the story in the box. When possible, read aloud.7Dothe true/false questions 1-5, and the fill-ins 1-5,following the story.7Jim Trelease makes the case for reading aloud to students of all ages in The Read Aloud Handbook.

Begin the story again. Start with a student volunteer. Then have students work in pairs to tell the first two thirds of the story so that every student has had a chance to speak.Day 4: Having chosenthree new words, addthem to the list on the board. Having prepared the PQA questions, scaffold the lesson as before.Then doexercises A and B,6-10 following the story in the box.On the board or on chart paper write out the story as a class, using only student input. Incorporate as much detail as possible. Set a goal of 150, 200, or 250 words, and meet the goal. Online, create a unit in Quizlet for Day 5. Enter all of the Spanish words and their definitions, plus any words that you added along the way, plus any old words that just need extra practice. Quizlet will remix the vocabulary into a quiz, flashcards, and games. The quiz can be retaken, and it is a different version every time. Students may take a screen shot oftheir highest quiz gradefor a sense of theirconventional grade.Day 5: Finish the weekwith the last three words and scaffold the lessonas before.Finish the exercises following the story in the box. Have students practice online using your Quizlet unit. Hand out the vocabulary list, and maybe use it as a self quiz.Students who were absent at all will be glad to have it as a resource.As early as Day 5, and before Day 10, pass out loose-leaf paper and have students write the entire story in their own words. Depending on what they are accustomed to, give them sentence starters for each section or not; let them use notes or not; have them work in pairs or not; grade it or not. The purpose is practice writing a full narrative in one sitting.Day 6 and following: Have students sign up for five minute time slots to tellyou the basic story. Provide the rubric. Have them practice with a partner using the rubric informally. This is a speaking assessment.Begin working on student presentations of an original variation onthe basic story. They will start with a storyboard tolay out the arc of the narrative. They will shape the story by introducing characters, setting the scene, describing the conflict, and coming to a solution/conclusion. Students will decide how to demonstrate the story—as a skit, apuppet show, a stop-motion video—and will write a script or a narration of 250 words.This is a writing assessment.Depending on the calendar, this unit can be completed in ten to fifteen days. Direct instruction takes a week, maybe two, but I normally plan to complete one storyevery three weeks, taking into consideration holidays, field trips, assemblies, fire drills,

and snow days. The extra week allows plenty of time for class presentations and individual conferences.The speaking proficiency assessment can take place any time after Day 5. Individual students come up and tell the basic story from a blank (no notes) storyboard, while the rest of the class works on the writing assessment or practices speaking. For practice, each student has a copy of the rubric below, and partners will give each other a practice “grade.” There is no time limitfor the speaking proficiency assessment, but a student generally needsat least five minutes. The teacher becomesthe “sympathetic interlocutor”who nods with encouragement. When the narrative breaks down, however, employ a counseling-learning tactic and ask, “What do you want to say?” Ifthe student responds in English, give her or him the hand signal usedto learn the word. That usually brings the Spanish word to mind, and the student resumes with no penalty.The writing proficiency assessment is the written script or narrative of the student’s own original variation on the basic story. Remarkably, beginning students are able to write a full page narrative ingoodquality beginner Spanish. The writing skills of native speakers and heritage speakers will vary. At my school we assess growth rather than proficiency, so that students of all abilities are working attheir growth edge. With all students, insist on thorough proof-reading and someform of peer editing. If students submit their writing using Microsoft Word or Google Docs, use track changes and margin notes to point out errors. The first time I teach a storytelling unit I sit next to each student and work through the margin notes until the writing piece is perfect. There’s nothing wrong with perfect. Whenever the narrative breaks down, just as in the speaking assessment, I ask, “What do you want to say?”After three or four storytelling units, I notice amarked improvement in student writing and less need for revision. I intend for their Spanish work to support their English literacy as well.I have simplified my speaking and writing proficiency rubrics in order to make the assessment expectations clear to students, and with the intention to encourage and uplift them in their language study. I want students to produce consistently excellent work. In the past I have allowed students to repeat a speaking proficiency assessment once, upon request. The writing grade is an assessment of thesecond (final)draft of their original story.In both cases, the revision process is a valuable step in language acquisition, and warrants time and care.For the writing rubric, I put the proofreading checklist on the back. Again, grammar is not directly taught, and therefore is not a priority in my beginning language assessments. As a necessary foundation for basic Spanish syntax, I do teach that adjectives usually follow nouns, and that we negate a sentence by putting nobefore the verb. For the time being, I will gladly explain any other grammar points briefly as a question arises, either during a lesson, or during the counseling-learning process.

Following the assessment pagesis asecond set of lesson materialsfor the story ofZal and Simorghfrom the Persian legend, the Shahnameh.The unit is suitable for second year students, as thestory in the box is in the past tense. For storyboard pictures, use thesimplified English versioninArsiaRozegar’s Shahnameh: The Story of Zal and the Simorgh,one of a series inTheShahnameh For Kids.8Zal and the Simorghis one portionof the Persian epic poem, the Shahnameh,writtenand illustratedfor children. Rozegar intentionally has developed aseries of adventures from the Shahnamehto teach sequential storytelling and accurate Iranian culture. The book was first available in 2015 through Kickstarter.Other stories in the collection are The Bravery of Gordafarid, and The Mighty Rostam, all of them developedby Arsia Rozegar.In a cross-curricular lesson, you couldalso devote time to studyfantastic works of arton the abduction of Zal.In addition, atantalizing cultural digressionwould be a study oftraditional Iranian puppetry,the marionettesand shadowtheater ofIran.


1. Bibliography for teachersBooker, C. The seven basic plots: Why we tell stories. London: Bloomsbury, 2017.Here is a good rationale and resource for story formulas.Cummins, James. The Role of Primary Language Development in PromotingEducational Success for Language Minority Students. Evaluation, Dissemination,and Assessment Center.California State University, 1981.The author makes a case for affirming the language and literature of minoritystudents.Fleischman, Michael and Roy. “Intentional Context in Situated NaturalLanguage Learning.” Cognitive Machines. The Media Laboratory.MassachusettsInstitute of Technology, Dec. 2005.This is another good resource for effective language acquisition pedagogy throughcontextual learning.Gray, Ronald. “Grammar Correction in ESL/EFL Writing Classes May Not BeEffective.”The InternationalTESL Journal, 2000. The author explains why insistence on correct grammar is not a good use of class time,how it impairs language acquisition, especially for the teaching of writing.He stresses that the important thingis to foster theactivity of writing to convey meaning.Huang, X., & van Naerssen, M. (1987). “Learning strategies for oral communication.”Applied Linguistics, 8(3), 287-307.This is a collection of methods and tips for teaching speaking proficiency.Jensen, Eric. Brain-based Learning: The New Science of Teaching and Training. SanDiego: The Brain Store, 2000.This book provides a good background for understanding brain cognitionasskill isacquired.Krashen, Stephen. “Teaching Grammar: Why Bother?” California EnglishJournal, 3(3): 81998.Krashen raises staunchly held beliefs on the teaching of Englishgrammarand sets most of them aside.Krashen, Stephen D. The Power of Reading: Insights from the Research.Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Publishing, 2004.Althoughthis curriculum unitmainlydeals with speaking and writing proficiency,

readingis an important source of comprehensible input. And Krashen is one of the great forerunners ofcurrent language acquisition pedagogywho writes onhis original research.Krashen, Stephen D. Second Language Acquisition and Second Language Learning. University of Southern California, 2002.This book is a persuasive discussion oflanguage acquisition pedagogy.Krashen, Stephen D. and Tracy D. Terrell.The Natural Approach: Language Acquisition in the Classroom.Hertfordshire: Prentice Hall Europe,1995.Here is a thorough run-down on language acquisition pedagogy intendedto mimic first language acquisition.There are several editions of this book.Lipton, Gladys Practical Handbook to Elementary Foreign Language Programs.Lincolnwood, Il.:National Textbook Co., 2010.Lipton is aFLES guru. To appreciatesequential FLES, check out this book.Alsosee Lipton’swebsite:,Terri and Wayne A. Conaway.Kiss,Bow, Or Shake Hands: The BestsellingGuide to Doing Business in More Than 60 Countries.Avon, Ma.: Adams Media, 2006.This book has extensiveinformation you might use when teaching on cross-cultural topics.Ray, Blaine.Look I Can Talk!Sky OaksProductions.This is Blaine Ray’s TPRS student text/workbook that is available in severallanguages.His unitsare skeletalbut versatile.Trelease, Jim.ReadAloud Handook. New York: Penguin Books, 2013.Reading is crucial for gettingthe volumes of comprehensible input needed forlanguage acquisition. Reading aloud is beneficial for all ages, and Jim Treleasetells the why and how. This is a classic. Trelease doesn’t use the term PQA, but he details how to analyze a text and formulate the meta-conversation.Truscott, John. “The Case Against Grammar Correction in L2 Writing Classes.”Language Learning46:2, June 1996, pp. 327-369. National Tsing Hua UniversityThis article isyet anothercase study onwhy it is not helpfulto enforce grammar rules strictly in beginning language acquisition.Sharma, Bal Krishna. “Mother Tongue Use in English Classroom.”Journal ofNELTA, Vol. 11 No. 1-2, December,2006.Here is another study affirming the practice of limiting use of the first language inthe new language classroom.Of particular interest are the exceptions.

“How to Tell Stories Across Cultures.”Intermission Magazine. June 29, article highlights elements to keep in mind when telling stories fromanother culture.Wilkinson, Joyce. The symbolic dramatic play: Literacy connection: whole brain, whole body, whole learning.Needham Heights, Mass.: Ginn, 1993.This is an argument for teaching language incontext with ideas for teaching.Zak, P. J. “Why Your Brain Loves Good Storytelling.”Harvard Business Review.November,2014.Retrieved from is a more recent article on storytelling, brain science, and what ingredientsgointo a good story formula.2. Reading list for studentsEhlert, L. Cuckoo/Cucú: A Mexican Folktale/Cucú: una leyenda mexicana.New York,NY: Harcourt, 1997.A colleague of mine has inspired me to build a library oftrade books in Spanishfor SSR, for reading aloud, and for material for storytelling.I especiallywant folktales and legends like this one for my classroom.Rozegar, Arsia. Shahnameh: The Story of Zal and the, 2015.This book is valuable for its authenticity as a classic Iranian legenddeveloped for children.It is the source for “Zaly la Simorgh”this curriculum unit.Walker,Barbara K. A Treasury of Turkish Folktalesfor Children.LinnetBooks, 1988.“The Rabbit and the Wolf” on page 15ofthe Walker treasury is the source for thestoryadaptationabove in this curriculumunit.There are several other stories and riddlesin thebook that you could adaptfor classroom use.3. List of materials for classroom use Vinyl floor marking tapeor masking tapeClear contact paperButcher paperA class set of Spanish dictionaries oraccess to an online dictionaryA class set of dry erase boards orlaminated card stockA class set of dry erasemarkersChart paperEgg timer, stop watch, or timer on your phone

Puppet theaterand puppetsDigitalmedia tools such as Google Slidesand Google DocsCraft supplies for paperdolls or sock puppets