Grammar-Translation Method, Audio-Lingual Method and Direct Method

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Three of the earliest teaching methods were the Grammar-Translation Method, the Direct Method, and the Audio-lingual Method. Discuss these three methods. Also, explain their shortcomings which led to more current approaches in the teaching of grammar to L2 speakers. 1. i) Grammar Translation Method (GTM):

Grammar-translation method is the extension of the Classical method which began in Germany (Prussia) in the late 18th century. It was then become popular in the early 19th century. It is one of the earliest teaching methods and was considered as the first institutionalized and the oldest method of language teaching. This is because; GTM was an adopted language teaching method in various schools. In the book, “The Empirical Evidence for the Influence of L1 in Interlanguage (1984: 98)” the writer, Howaat, said that this teaching method was actually to educate students Latin and to the extent of teaching the ancient Greek. In implementing this method, teachers use students’ L1 to teach. Therefore, L1 is very important as a medium resource and is widely used in the classroom.

GTM is more institutionalized in form and are teach to larger groups. It also conserved the basic framework of grammar and translation. For example, they used it to replace the traditional texts with sample sentences and translate sentences into and out of the foreign language. Besides that, the major goals in this method are, writing and reading comprehension and grammar points are showed using isolated or disconnected sentences. Grammar rules are taught explicitly and directly while sometimes the point of the specific rules and exceptions are emphasized.

According to Diane Larsen-Freeman, in her book Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching (1986:13), GTM provides expanded descriptions of some common/typical techniques which are: 1)  Translation of a Literary Passage - Translating target language to native language 2)  Reading Comprehension Questions - Finding information...
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