This semester I'm taking physical education students through Pinan Shodan and Nidan (Heian Nidan and Shodan). I'm experimenting with teaching portions of the kata along with application drills. Instead of teaching the whole kata and then drills, I'm breaking the kata into combative chunks. I teach the kata portion first, and then we review a variety of drills for that portion. Then, we move to the next portion, learn the kata bit, then some drills. Once we work through the whole kata this way, I plan to do some live drills in which they can start mixing up the applications.
Since I only have the students for 15 weeks, I'm more interested in their learning combative principles and be able to work the drills. I'm less concerned about their ability perform the kata perfectly. (I realize this may be anathema to some karate instructors and practitioners, but I think this approach is reasonable for the context and these students.) We'll see how it goes.