Laura, a teacher from Indiana writes with common questions about upper levels.  These are good questions from a seasoned teacher that is moving into teaching with TPRS at the upper levels.

My name is Laura ____.  I am a Spanish teacher in Indiana.  I have been teaching Spanish for 10 years. Early in my career I was a new elementary teacher with a Spanish minor.  The previous Spanish teacher used TPR storytelling.  Therefore I attempted to use this method as I learned how to teach Spanish.  The students were all at a beginning level since the school had gone through so many Spanish teachers.  After several years of tpr storytelling I did see some results as students were acquiring vocab and able to do some speaking and writing but at a limited basis.   However I attempted to utilize the textbook  to improve my teaching and use the variety of resources like videos.  Four years ago I earned my master’s and began teaching Spanish 3 and 4 for high school/college dual credit. 

Yet after 10 years I am still facing the same problem.  Students have good skills at listening, reading, grammar and vocab, but the speaking is limited.   I want to be the best Spanish teacher that I can be, and know there has to be a better way to get my students skilled at all abilities: reading, writing, listening and speaking.
So now I am thinking about going back to TPR storytelling.  I have some questions and would appreciate any feedback that you could offer.
How long would you spend tpr-ing the vocab for a mini-story?
I do not always use the gestures of classical TPR for every story, just for the words that lend themselves to it.  I gesture for only 1-2 minutes.  The way I use gestures is to get students recognized the word, get it in short term memory.  The repetitions in the story are what put it in long term memory and that is what I concentrate on.
Would you do the vocab and a mini-story in 1 period (we have 50min. classes)?
We have 52 minute classes.  It is possible to introduce new vocabulary and tell a story in that amount of time, but it usually takes longer in my classes, because we run down so many rabbit trails and I have to question the actors and the class to clarify details.
How much vocab would you tpr- for a mini-story?
Purposefully, no more than 3 new words or structures, but new words always slip in as we elaborate the story.  More if they are cognates or very concrete words that are easier to pick up.
 I did 5-6 words.  Can you have 3 words and 2 long phrases per day or is this too much?
It depends on the class level and the mix of students in that class.  Students in levels 3, 4 & AP can absorb more.  The main thing is to constantly keep checking for understanding, and at various levels.  I tell my student teachers from the university to do a comprehension check at least every minute.  “What did I just say?”  “Why did I say ___ instead of ___?”
How do you teach other pronouns such as the yo, tu, nosotros, vosotros forms of verbs?
By talking to the actors and verifying details with them and then “reporting” back to the class: 
   Teacher to actor:   “OK, so you were walking on the highway at night,  or were you riding a bicycle?”  
   Actor:  “I was walking.  I don’t have a bike.  Bikes are stupid.”  
   Teacher to class:  “Class, Mena was walking on the highway in the night.”
Exchanges like this cover the yo, tu and el forms.  Handle the nosotros in a similar way by having conversations with two actors.
In storytelling I usually see just the el,ella, and ellos/ellas forms.
Most stories are written that way, that is why we have to have conversations with the actors.  I also have students write the story from the point of view of a character in the story.  We practice that and then they write it.
How many mini-stories would you have for a large story or chapter?
As many as it takes for the students to get most of the crucial vocabulary.  Usually about 3.
I typically did 5 sets of vocab for a chapter, with 5 mini-stories that led up to a large story with the 25 words all together.  Is this too much?
That can be OK as long as it is still interesting and understandable to the the students.  I like to move on a bit faster than that because I begin to get bored, but that’s just me.
How long would you spend on a chapter?
As long as it takes for the students to get most of the crucial vocabulary.
How do you use Tpr storytelling in the advanced classes Level 3 and 4?
Yes!  It works best with the upper levels.  I have examples of extended stories and long explanations of the thought process behind them available on my web site.  Go to the Products page (  ):  and scroll down to the advanced levels section.  Look for Teaching the Subjunctive #1: Expressing Desire  and El cuento trágico de Mark: Teaching Complex Grammar, The Past Subjunctive 
How do you incorporate all the difficult grammar that is common to the upper levels?
With stories like the ones I mentioned above.  I tend to stick with one simple grammar point at a time till they get it fluidly and naturally.
I am sorry for all the long questions, but I could not find these answers on the internet.  Your website has been very helpful and I appreciate all the free information that you have.  Thank you for your time.
My pleasure, Laura.  I am happy that I have a bit of extra time now that summer is here.  Let me know if these brief answers clear things up a bit for you.  Please consider having me out for an in-service training at your school sometime.