Although I have been using TPRS® for the past six years and have had excellent results, this year, I have had the best results ever in a level-one class! My Spanish 1s are learning at a far greater rate than ever before and have been understanding Spanish since day one!
All of this thanks to Ben Slavic's "Circling with Balls."
In the past, I have always begun the year with TPR. It's always been a quick way to get in a lot of that benchmark vocabulary that inundates level one.
However, this year, I didn't TPR. I had the students write their names big on a sheet of paper and draw four pictures: their favorite activity, their favorite animal/pet, their favorite color, and their birth date. We've been circling the information just on the first two pictures for the past four weeks! I've never before used so much Spanish in class in a level one. It's been amazing. I'm getting 80-100% comprehension checks, the kids are earning great grades, and I have even gotten some kudos from a few parents. One parent mentioned to me that her daughter is also in a level-one Spanish class, though with a different teacher, and her son, who has me, is already understanding and talking circles around his sister. This is all thanks to Ben and his excellent two books PQA in a Wink! and TPRS in a Year! If you haven't already checked them out, run, don't walk, to Ben's site and get yourself a copy!