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ESL forum > Techniques and methods in Language Teaching > The use of translation in EFL    

The use of translation in EFL


The use of translation in EFL
Hello, fellow teachers!

I`ve started this topic because I know there are many people out there, teachers and parents alike, who prefer the technique of translating everything, from new vocabulary to texts to dialogues aso.
How  and when do you use it, with what kind of students, which age groups and which topics?

12 Oct 2010      


Hi oldtunes!
In my case I don �t really use the translation method much. I prefer to mime or to teach my students using realia such as flashcards or any other method that helps them to relate the picture with the meaning of a word. However, in some cases especially when the students are beginners it is necessary to translate sometimes so that they don �t feel discouraged or lost. It is also true that they are constantly looking for the corresponding meaning in their mother tongue but in my opinion it �s better to teach them not to translate from the very beginning. 
I prefer to work with the dialogues or the new vocabulary I �m teaching entirely in english and afterwards I allow them to translate the words or phrases in their mother tongue as a revision and for them to feel safer when I consider they need so. 
A hug! 

12 Oct 2010     


� Thanks, my opinion is exactly the same, because if you rely on translation when teaching vocabulary, kids will tend to not use the word unless you give them the hint in their mother tongue and of course if they practise only translation.�

I`d be very glad to hear other opinions!

14 Oct 2010     


I tend only to translate vocabulary with higher levels, when a word has a specific meaning and I don �t want them to get it confused with another word - but I explain it first using synonyms and wait for them to give me the translation, only using L1 myself when I �m not hearing the word I want.

With lower levels I use the odd bit of L1 when I can see that they don �t understand or if I know that it would benefit us more for me to say something quickly in L1 than spend a long time trying to explain it in English.

14 Oct 2010