Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Monolingual and bilingual approach in language classrooms Essay

Monolingual and bilingual approach in language classrooms - Essay Example As our world has become smaller, more countries have recognized the importance of English becoming an international language. They have seen the importance of upgrading their language teaching skills. Government policies across the world such as ‘Teaching English through English’ (TETE) had begun in Korea (Nunan, 2003; Kang, 2008). As learning English has become more popular in many countries, teachers have asked whether it is better to teach English through a monolingual approach or a bilingual approach. "Monolingual approach is teaching English by only using English; and the bilingual approach is teach the target language which in this case is English (L2) using both the mother tongue (L2) and the target language.(L2)" (Atkinson, 1993; Edstrome, 2006). Learning English by using the mother tongue has been considered a less efficient method in some countries. Parents and governments have the tendency to favour only an English language teaching syllabus but there are teac hing professionals who advocate that teaching using only L2 may not be the most efficient and profitable way of teaching. The importance lies in deciding what is the best teaching method; and whether or not L1 should be used in teaching. The teaching approach depends on the teachers and the parents. All circumstances need to be taken under consideration to determine what is best for learners (Atkinson, 1993).A brief historical background of both approaches will be presented including the pros and the cons of L1 bilingual approach and the L2 approach.... A brief historical background of both approaches will be presented including the pros and the cons of L1 bilingual approach and the L2 approach. Emphasis will be made showing that L1 helps target language learning. To conclude a format will be introduced showing strategies of when and how to use students' native language and strategies how to limit the use of L1 use in order to maximize the use of L2. 2. Historical view of L1 and L2 use in language classroom When teaching L2 (English)as a second language began several hundred years ago, using the target language was well accepted (Auerbach, 1993). This phenomenon was due to emphasizing writing competence rather than speaking competence. From the 19th century, there was a reversed phenomenon and speaking became more important that writing. The monolingual approach took precedence in language learning. (Baron, 1990; Crawford, 1991; Auerbach, 1993).Each wave of immigration considered speaking English part of the process of assimilation. The U.S government attempted to Americanize immigrants considering speaking good English as patriotic (Baron, 1990, p. 155) The earlier form of teaching in colonial times stressed monolingual teaching in order homogenize the language (Phillipson, 1992; Hawks, 2001). It was possibly a major influence that the L1 varied depending on the immigrants' nationality. Using both languages was seen as non efficient and abnormal way of teaching the language so that L2 was their only tool to teach the target language (Pennycook, 1994). The Makere report, presented at Makere University in Uganda at a conference in 1961, gives an excellent example in how much the monolingual approach was favoured. There are five main tenets: 1. English is best taught in a monolingual

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