The Altamira Language Learning Team grew out of TriState TCI, a regional network of CI teachers. TriState TCI is a professional learning community (PLC) in the Philadelphia tri-state area for teachers who use or are learning to use TPRS (Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling) and other TCI (Teaching with Comprehensible Input) approaches.

Informed by the language acquisition hypotheses and principles of Stephen Krashen, Bill VanPatten, and other Second Language Acquisition (SLA) researchers; and inspired by the work of many talented CI practitioners, we teach with these understandings:

  • Language learning is natural and unconscious. Language competence is acquired, not learned.
  • We acquire language when we understand what we hear and read.
  • We may need to hear a structure repeated many times before we acquire it.
  • The human brain craves novelty: We acquire language faster when what we hear and read is interesting, even compelling.
  • We learn better and acquire language more readily when we are in a positive, low-stress setting.
  • Explicit grammar instruction does not lead to acquisition, nor do extensive vocabulary lists. We shelter vocabulary, not grammar, in our classroom interactions.
  • Output is not an indicator of acquisition. Forced output may even hinder acquisition.
  • With CI we can easily use 90% target language that is 100% comprehensible.

TriState TCI’s purpose is to help and support teachers to build and expand their use of TPRS strategies grounded in these underlying principles. We meet monthly in schools around the PA-NJ-DE tristate area. In our meetings, everyone is invited to demo skills and share ideas for delivering comprehensible input in effective and novel ways in the classroom. Join us at our next meeting and on FaceBook at TriState TCI.