As with Grammar-Translation Method, the Direct Method is not new. Its principles have been applied by language teachers for many years. Most recently, it was revived as a method when the goal of instruction became learning how to use a foreign language to communicate. Since the Grammar-translation Method was not very effective in preparing students to use the target language communicatively, the Direct method became popular.
The Direct Method has one very basic rule: No translation is allowed. In fact, the Direct Method receives its name from the fact that meaning is to be conveyed directly in the target language through the use of demonstration and visual aids, with no recourse to the students’ native language (Diller 1978).
The teacher is calling the class to order as we find seats toward the back of the room. He has placed a big map of the United States in the front of the classroom. He asks the students to open their books to a certain page number. The lesson entitled ‘Looking at a Map’. As the students are called one by one, they read a sentence from the reading passage at the beginning of the lesson. The teacher points to the part of the map the sentence describes after each has read his sentence.
After the students finish reading the passage, they are asked if they have any questions. A students asks what a mountain range is. The teacher turns to the blackboard and draws a series of inverted cones to illustrate a mountain range.
The teacher next instructs the students to turn to an exercise in the lesson which asks them to fill in the blanks. They read a sentence out loud and supply the missing word as they are reading.
Finally, the teacher asks the students to take out their noteboos, and he gives them a dictation. The passage he dictates is one passage he dictates is one paragraph long and is about the geography long and is about the geography of the United States.
THINKING ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE
1. The students read aloud a Reading in the target language should
passage about United States be taught from the beginning of language
geography. instruction; however, the the reading skill will
be developed through practice with speaking.
Language is primarily speech.
1. The teacher points to a part
of the map after each sentence Objects present in the immediate
is read. classroom environment should be used
to help students understand the meaning.
1. The teacher uses the target The native language should not be used
language to ask the students in the classroom.
if they have a question.
1. The teacher answers the The teacher should demonstrate, not explain
student’s questions by drawing or translate.
on the blackboard or giving
1. The teacher asks questions about Vocabulary is acquired more naturally if
the map in the target language. students use it in full sentence, rather than
memorizing word lists.
1. Students ask questions about The purpose of language learning is
the map. Communication.
1. The teacher works with the Pronounciation should be worked on
Students right from the beginning of language
on the pronounciation of instruction.
1. The teacher corrects a grammar Self-correction facilitates language
error by asking the students learning.
to make a choice.
1. The teacher asks questions Students should be encouraged to speak
About the students; stuedents ask as much as possible.
each other questions.
10. The students fill in blanks with Grammar should be taught inductively.
preposition practiced in
11. The teacher dictates a paragraph Writing is an important skill, to be developed
about United States geography. from the beginning of language instruction.
12. All of teh lesson of the week The syllabus is based on situations or topics,
Involve United States geography. not usually on linguistic strutures.
13. A proverb is used to discuss how Learning another language also involves
people in the U.S. view learning how speakers of that language live.
REVIEWING THE TECHNIQUES
Students take turns reading sections of a passage, play, or dialog out loud.
Question and answer exercise
This exercise is conducted only in the target language.
Getting students to self correct
The teacher of this class has the students self-correct by asking them to make a choice between what they said and a alternative answer he supplied.
The teacher asks students a number of questions in the target language, which the students have to understand to be able to answer correctly.
Fill-in-the blank exercise
The students would have induced the grammar rule they need to fill in the blanks from examples and practice with earlier parts of the lesson.
The teacher reads the passage three times. The first time the teacher reads it at a normal speed, while the students just listen.
The class included one example of a technique used to give students listening comprehension practice.