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Grammar Translation Method

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1 Grammar Translation Method
By Diane Larsen-Freeman

2 Introduction GTM is one of the most traditional methods, dating back to the 19th century. First Known as Prussian method in U.S.A. It was used in teaching of classical languages as Latin & Greek. It has relation with Faculty Psychology Approach.

3 Main Objectives Helping students read and appreciate foreign language literature. Students can become more familiar with the grammar of their native language also write and speak their native language better. Helpful for mental exercise.

4 Procedures (the experience)
The class begins with a reading passage from the foreign language literature: (1) Translation of a Literary Passage: Translating target language to native language. (2) Reading Comprehension Questions: Finding information in a passage, making inferences and relating to personal experience. (3) Antonyms/Synonyms: Finding antonyms and synonyms for words or sets of words. (4) Cognates: To recognize sound patterns between L1 and the target language.

5 Active and Passive Grammar
John washed the car yesterday (active) The car was washed (by John) yesterday(Passive) Passive form has two parts: a form of be(am, is,are...) and p.p of main word . E.g simple present (wash) am,is,are washed Simple past (wash) was,were washed

6 Procedures (the experience)
(5) Deductive Application of the Rule: Understanding grammar rules and their exceptions, then applying them to new examples. (6) Fill-in-the-blanks: To complete sentences with new words or items of a particular grammar type. (7) Memorization: Memorizing vocabulary lists, grammatical rules and grammatical paradigms. (8) Use Words in Sentences: Students create sentences to illustrate they know the meaning and use of new words. (9) Composition: Students are asked to write a composition about a topic in the target language.

7 The Principles of GTM (1) Literary language is superior to spoken language. (2) To be able to translate each language into the other. (3) The ability to communicate in the target language is not a goal of foreign language instruction. (4) Emphasis on reading and writing. Form is emphasized over function. (5) The teacher is the authority in the class.

8 The Principles of GTM (6) To find native language equivalents for all target language words is possible. (7) Learning is facilitated through attention to similarities between the target language and the mother tongue. (8) To learn about the form of the target language. (9) Deductive teaching of grammar. (10) A good mental exercise. (11) Being consious of the grammatical rules of the target language. (12) Students are asked to memorize new words, grammatical rules, and verb conjugation.

9 Reviewing the Principles
1- The goals of teachers? Real goal of learning L2 is to be able to read literature To read literature,students need to learn grammar rules and vocabulary Studying a foreign language provides good mental exercise.

10 Reviewing the Principles
2-The role of teachers? Authority Central role 2-The role of students? Students do what teacher says Students are passive

11 Reviewing the Principles
3-Some features of the teaching/learning process? Translation from L1-L2, L2-L1 Grammar deductively Memorize vocabulary L1=L2

12 Reviewing the Principles
4- Student-teacher interaction? Students-teacher interaction (mostly) Students initation is little Student-student interaction? Student-student interaction is little

13 Reviewing the Principles
5- Dealing with the students’ feelings? No Principles 6- View of language? Literary language is superior to spoken language. View of culture? Limited literature & fine arts of L2

14 Reviewing the Principles
7- Emphasis on areas of language? Vocabulary and grammar(teaching the form) = form based Emphasis on language skills? Reading and writing Little attention to listening,pronunciation and speaking

15 Reviewing the Principles
8- The role of the students’ native language? Classroom language is L1 Meaning of L2 is made clear by translation into L1

16 Reviewing the Principles
9- Evaluation? Written tests ( students translate from L1 to L2, L2 to L1) Questions about L2 and applying grammar rules

17 Reviewing the Principles
10- The teacher’s response to students errors? Incorrect answers are corrected by the teacher. Getting the correct answer is important

18 Techniques of GTM Translation of literary passages
Reading comprehension questions Antonyms/ synonyms Cognates Deductive application of grammatical rules Fill in the blanks Memorization (of grammar and vocabulary) Use words in sentences Composition writing

19 Some Advantages of GTM Translation is the easiest way of explaining meanings from one language into another. Less stressful for the students. Familiarity with other nations’ culture. Even non-fluent teachers in the target language can teach by using GTM. An effective way for application of grammar and sentence structure. Few demands on teachers.

20 Some Disadvantages of GTM
It is an unnatural method of learning Wrong idea of what language is. Less learners’ motivation Creating frustration for students Lack of communicative ability in the target language. Speech is neglected. It dosn’t give pattern practice.

21 Conclusion GTM was frequently used at the begining of the 20th century but today, many consider it as an unnatural method. The natural order of learning a language is listening, speaking, reading and writing. That is the way how the child learns his mother tongue in natural surroundings. But GTM doesn’t focus on all 4 skills needed for learning a language. So, this causes problems and doesn’t let GTM to be a perfect and natural method and makes it incomplete for language learners who like to learn L2 at the best level.


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