This year, I intend to have fun. If there were some research out there that showed that teaching grammar-heavy lessons with little to no use of the Target Language was more effective than CI methods, then I would do the less-fun option.
But that’s not what the research shoes.
The research shows that CI is the way to go for acquisition. To me, that is a free pass to make my class as fun as I possibly can for the kids (and for myself). My requirement is to get the kids communicating in Spanish. I have all of the Standards and Can-do statements and Most-frequently-used-words lists at my disposal and I plan to put them together to make a program that is effective, interesting, and, most of all fun.
Because if it’s not enjoyable or effective classroom practice, why do it?