Quiet Classrooms

We forget that over 90% of human communication is visual. When we stand an actor up there is a very high danger that, unless the actor moves only in response to our commands, the students looking at the scene will be distracted by any motions the actor does that are not related to the story. I keep an eye on my actors. They get to move when and how I tell them. When I do this my stories are more crisp.

In the same way,  my students’ little movements, shifting around in chairs, tapping fingers, etc. can be very distracting to me as I try to keep the story moving forward. If a kid distracts me in this way, I stop class and remind the kids to sit with clear eyes and squared shoulders so that they are able to clearly demonstrate to me their intention to understand my words.

TPRS classrooms need not be full of jocularity. Good stories occur in quiet, focused classrooms, not in loud, unfocused classrooms. I would rather have a quiet story that is not particularly funny, but contains a lot of comprehensible input, instead of the opposite.


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