The use of the mother tongue (L1) in foreign language classes

Pérez Pérez, Katya Rebeca and Torres Pérez, Elías Enríque and Navarro Vargas, José Miguel (2010) The use of the mother tongue (L1) in foreign language classes. Bachelor thesis, Universidad de El Salvador.


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Learning a language requires the implementation of different strategies such as the use of the mother tongue (L1) that facilitates learning and teaching in foreign language classrooms. This leads us to two different perspectives on learning a new language: the linguists and researchers that fully support the mother tongue use in foreign language (FL) classes, and the others that support only the target language (L2) in FL contexts for a more effective way of learning and acquiring a foreign language. These two perspectives on learning a target language are widely recognized as “Monolingual Approach” (Krashen, 1981) and “Bilingual Approach” (Auerbach, 1993). The ‘Bilingual Approach’ is currently gaining more support by incorporating the students’ L1 as a learning tool and also as a facilitator for an efficient communication. On the other hand, the ‘Monolingual Approach’ where only L2 is used within the framework of the classroom is regarded as the best way to acquire a foreign language. The exposure to language leads to learning, excluding the students’ L1 for the benefit of maximizing students’ exposure to the L2. These two approaches have been a subject to discussion whether the bilingual or the monolingual approach would fit the learners’ needs and provide a better input in order to improve language accuracy, fluency and clarity to facilitate the procedures of a foreign language learning. According to Kavaliauskiené (2009) the modern trend of teaching languages is “based on the communicative method which emphasizes the teaching of the target language through the target language. However, the idea of abandoning the native tongue is too stressful to many learners, who need a sense of security in the experience of learning a foreign language” (p.22). In the past, methods such the Grammar Translation Method (GTM), were based on the use of L1 in Foreign Language classes, however, the students were unable to speak fluently after having studied the language for a long time. This led to the idea that all use of the mother tongue in the language classrooms should be avoided. In addition, translation has been taught as uncommunicative, boring, pointless, difficult and irrelevant (Harmer, 2001: 131).

Item Type: Thesis (Bachelor)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Enseñanza del idioma inglés
Subjects: 400 Lenguas > 420 Inglés e inglés antiguo
Divisions: Facultad de Ciencias y Humanidades > Licenciatura en Lenguas Modernas: Especialidad en Frances e Inglés
Depositing User: Msc Carlos Ferrer
Date Deposited: 01 Mar 2018 20:53
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2018 20:53

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