A new, gentle intro to “non-targeted CI”

Responding to requests from Stephen Krashen and others, I wrote a report last fall on my students’ and my experiences with what he calls “non-targeted comprehensible input,” which I sometimes call “interest-targeting input.” The article, “Non-Targeted Comprehensible Input: How it Works for My Students and Me,” appeared in the latest issue of The International Journal of Foreign Language Teaching. Feel free to check it out!

The goal throughout is not to suggest that teachers should “do X, not Y,” but to give teachers some ideas about how to make the most of their students’ interests while accomplishing whatever they are expected to accomplish in a given term. Here’s to your and your students’ joy and success!

See also: “Whatever” Works: Non-Targeted CI Lesson 1 and the posts that follow it.

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  1. Hi Justin. Read most of your article. Very interesting; I have never heard of the terms “targeted CI” and “non-targeted CI” before. The distinction makes sense. I actually think I understand my OWN teaching a bit better now (it’s a lot of targeted CI).

    My big question for anyone who capitalizes on teaching like this is probably what you’ll guess from me: How do you make learning objectives student friendly? How do you help them understand what it is they are to accomplish? How do you hold them accountable to it, and how do you ensure that you include enough rehearsal of the content to legitimately assess that learning?
    I just still can’t wrap my head around the idea of just talking all class, not knowing where the conversation will go, not knowing if I will end up including the different modes of communication ACTFL recommends (or is that not important?), not being able to have materials and visuals ready for the content I’m teaching… a whole mix of things.
    I’ve dumped a lot on ya! I’m going to keep reading more your blog posts.

    • All really important questions, Chris! You may find partial answers in the rest of the article, but not as thorough answers as the questions deserve. I’d love to devote one or more posts to those questions, which I think would dovetail well with a series on goals that I’ve just started. Looking forward to exploring these questions together!

  2. Chris what are your “content” goals? Are they knowledge or proficiency? Are they word lists? I am working on a document called Cycles of Instruction and Assessment and I would love to hear your responses to these questions. It would help a lot!

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