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Abstract

The problem of translation in foreign language classes cannot be dealt with unless we attempt to make an overview of what translation meant for language teaching in different periods of language pedagogy. From the translation-oriented grammar-translation method through the complete ban on translation and mother tongue during the times of the audio-lingual approaches, we have come today to reconsider the role and status of translation in ESL classes. This article attempts to advocate for translation as a useful ESL class activity, which can completely fulfil the requirements of communicativeness. We also attempt to identify some activities and games, which rely on translation in some books published in the 1990s and the 2000s.
T
ranslation in ESL Classes
Imola Katalin NAGY
Department of Applied Linguistics,
&ACULTY OF 4
ECHNICAL AND (UMAN 3CIENCES 4ÈRGU -UREŊ
Sapientia Hungarian University of Transylvania
nimolkat@gmail.com
Abstract. The problem of translation in foreign language classes cannot be
dealt with unless we attempt to make an overview of what translation meant
for language teaching in different periods of language pedagogy. From the
translation-oriented grammar-translation method through the complete
ban on translation and mother tongue during the times of the audio-lingual
approaches, we have come today to reconsider the role and status of
translation in ESL classes. This article attempts to advocate for translation as
A USEFUL %3, CLASS ACTIVITY WHICH CAN COMPLETELY FULlL THE REQUIREMENTS OF
communicativeness. We also attempt to identify some activities and games,
which rely on translation in some books published in the 1990s and the 2000s.
Keywords: language teaching, method, translation, communicative and
post-communicative language classes
1. Introduction
Language and culture are inseparable; hence the teaching of language is
always intertwined with the teaching of culture. Linguistic and inter
-linguistic
communicative competence rely heavily on cultural and intercultural knowledge.
Within intercultural knowledge and competence, the process of translation plays
an essential role. Translation and teaching translation have been strongly debated
ISSUES IN THE lELD OF FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHING AND TODAY WE DIFFERENTIATE
professional translation from pedagogic or school translation. The two types of
translations, as we shall see, differ widely; what connects them is their capacity
to bridge the gap between two cultures.
The attitude towards translation tasks in foreign language classrooms has
been different in every major period and approach to language teaching. Adriana
Vizental (2008: 30) makes an overview of the main trends in foreign language
teaching, distinguishing between several successive generations of approaches:
A
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HILOLOGICA
, 7, 3 (2015) 87–107
DOI: 10.1515/ausp-2015-0057
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– the grammar-translation method (GTM);
– the audio-lingual approaches (ALA);
– the communicative approach (CLT);
– the post-communicative turn (PCT).
Each method displays a different treatment of translation as a classroom
activity.
2. The Grammar-Translation Method
Translation is a long-standing method in teaching foreign or second languages.
Long before Grammar-Translation (GT) methods arose in the 19
th
century,
there had been an emphasis on grammar in language teaching using
TRANSLATION TECHNIQUES WHICH HAD BEEN DEVELOPED IN THE 
th
century.
During the reign of the GT paradigm, translation was used to UNDERSTAND
and learn grammatical use of the L2 better by providing meaning (mother
tongue translation). Rather unnatural L2 sentences, often translated from
THE LEARNERS lRST LANGUAGE , WERE USED TO INTRODUCE THE GRAMMATICAL
targets. The methodology, with its focus on learning grammar rules and
vocabulary, and deductive L2 learning, did not provide for listening and
SPEAKING ACTIVITIES )T ALSO INDUCED A FALSE IMPRESSION THAT lXED WORD
to word, or phrase to phrase, translation is possible between L1 and L2
(Machida 2008: 140–141).
According to Vizental (2008), the GRAMMARTRANSLATION METHOD, or THE CLASSICAL
METHOD IS ONE OF THE OLDEST METHODS ITS PRINCIPLES AND TECHNIQUES BEING SIMILAR
to those used for teaching “dead” languages such as Latin or Greek. As its name
suggests, the GRAMMARTRANSLATION METHOD RELIES ON ACQUISITION OF LANGUAGE
by learning VOCABULARY and GRAMMAR RULES, with translation employed as the
MAIN OPERATIONAL TECHNIQUE /NE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT SHORTCOMINGS OF '4-
was learners’ inability to cope with actual communicative situations in spite of
mastering the grammar of a language.
3. The Audiolingual Method
“By mid-20
th
century, the Audiolingual Method (ALM), based on the Army
Specialised Training Program developed during the Second World War, had swept
INTO SECOND LANGUAGE TEACHING )T EXEMPLIlED THE SHIFT OF EMPHASIS IN FOREIGN
language teaching from written to spoken” (ibid. 141–142). The audio-lingual
approaches (ALA) focused on developing oral skills, and considered reading and
writing of secondary importance…
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89Translation in ESL Classes
20
th
century audio-lingual teachers suggested teaching the foreign language
by using it exclusively. No explanation in or translation into the students’
native tongue was allowed in their classes: all instructions had to be given
in the target language, and meanings were explained with the help of
visuals, realia (real objects), paralanguage, and demonstration (Vizental
2008: 31–32).
The AUDIOLINGUAL METHOD that emerged adopted at least three basic ideas from
the DIRECT METHOD:
– the ban imposed on the learner’s mother tongue; exclusive usage of the target
language for teaching purposes;
– the contextual presentation of vocabulary and grammar;
– the importance given to habit formation (ibid. 33).
Audio-linguists insisted that both vocabulary and grammar should be taught
IN CONTEXT Learning VOCABULARY in context was extremely important because
bilingual lists may give rise to all kinds of mistakes. The audio-linguists’ approach
to grammar IS THAT n SINCE STUDENTS GENERALLY VIEW GRAMMAR AS DIFlCULT AND
boring – theoretical presentations should be avoided. Among the basic audio-
lingual TECHNIQUES, Vizental mentions the following:
– using commands to direct behaviour, i.e. students perform actions as
indicated by the teacher/other students;
– repetition and memorization, to facilitate habit formation;
– drilling, i.e. practising the new vocabulary and grammatical patterns in:
– exercises, e.g. repetition drills, substitution or transformation exercises;
n QUESTIONnANSWER TEACHERnSTUDENT OR STUDENTnSTUDENT EXCHANGES BASED
on the text;
– grammar/vocabulary games;
– conversation practice, role play: i.e. dialogues similar to the text are performed
by pairs of students in front of the class, etc. (ibid. 34).
4. The Communicative Method
The 1970s witnessed the emergence of the COMMUNICATIVE APPROACH to
language teaching, which also had several actual teaching models, e.g. the
functional-notional approach, the total physical response, the competency-
based approach, etc.
The same post-war period saw development of a number of approaches
BASED ON OR DIVERGING FROM #HOMSKYS THEORIES /NE OF THE MOST SIGNIlCANT
and enduring was the Communicative approach, which placed emphasis
on MEANINGFUL INPUT IN , (exposure to L2 in realistic situations) and a
NATURALISTIC APPROACH (like children’s L1 learning). As a result, teaching
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explicit linguistic forms and using the mother tongue were avoided. More
latterly, the limitations of using a Communicative approach alone have been
raised with respect to the teaching or learning of academic or professional
language use, and it is charged with not providing opportunities to develop
some language knowledge and skills, such as accuracy in language use.
Another approach from that time was the notional/functional syllabus,
which organized the language to be taught under notional and functional
categories and emphasized LANGUAGE AS A TOOL OF COMMUNICATION In place of
THE WORDTOWORD OR LINGUISTIC EQUIVALENTS OF OTHER APPROACHES IT PROMOTED
TEACHING A NEW LANGUAGE THROUGH PRESENTING FUNCTIONAL EQUATIONS BETWEEN
THE lRST AND SECOND LANGUAGE USAGE ! KEY CRITICISM OF THIS APPROACH WAS
that it could give learners the basis from which they could generate their
own expressions (Machida 2008: 141–142).
The communicative approach is not a highly structured method, but rather a
broad set of ideas generally accepted as good teaching practice. Communicative
language teaching relies on the premises that:
1. the ultimate aim of foreign language teaching is to develop the learners’
COMMUNICATIVE COMPETENCE human communication relies on much more than
THE INTERLOCUTORS LINGUISTIC COMPETENCE mUENT SPEAKERS ARE ABLE TO INTERACT
linguistically thanks to their knowledge of society and of discourses, to their
ability to interact spontaneously and cope with a variety of everyday situations;
2. learning begins with imitation; but, unless the learner moves on to the stage
OF FREE PRODUCTION it does not turn into actual, long-term learning: teachers must
allow students freedom and encourage their creativity in producing their own
language;
3. developing LANGUAGE SKILLS is more important than teaching content:
n THE STUDENTS MUST BE EQUIPPED WITH TOOLS FOR LANGUAGE PERFORMANCE IN THE
real world; such tools facilitate life-long learning, outside the school system;
– the students must be taught TO USE the language functionally and strategically,
to achieve real-world aims, the way people do in real life;
4. meaning is more important than form; mUENCY of language is as important as
linguistic accuracy; grammar should be taught only when necessary:
n LEARNERS MUST ACQUIRE CONlDENCE in their linguistic abilities and become less
scared of making mistakes; errors are a natural part of learning: as long as the
speaker manages to get his/her message through, the teacher should not interfere
to correct their mistakes;
– the students must learn the language by USING the language, i.e. by struggling
to communicate; this way, they learn vocabulary and grammar in context;
5. appropriacy of language is as important as linguistic accuracy:
– communication takes place in a certain social and DISCOURSAL BACKGROUND;
communicating means establishing relationships between the INTERLOCUTORS
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91Translation in ESL Classes
(e.g. their respective age, sex, familiarity, roles of speaker/listener); between
the speaker and the setting in which the interaction takes place (e.g. place,
time, activity type), between the speaker and the TYPE OF DISCOURSE (e.g. casual
conversation or formal debate), etc.;
– the students must be taught to observe social conventions and adapt their
LANGUAGE TO THE REQUIREMENTS OF THE SOCIAL AND DISCOURSAL CONTEXT IE SELECT THEIR
vocabulary and communicative strategies according to the situational context;
6. active participation and affective involvement in the learning process
motivate the students and enhance learning:
– the student must become a partner in the learning process, a negotiator
between the self, the learning process, and the OBJECT OF LEARNING; active modes of
LEARNING EG PAIR WORK GROUP WORK ENSURE LONGTERM ACQUISITION
– learners must be able to personalize the topic and relate it to their own lives
and interests; this way, the learning material becomes real and meaningful;
7. SPONTANEOUS, IMPROVISED PRACTICE IS MORE EFlCIENT THAN MECHANICAL
repetition:
– ordinary communication is spontaneous and unexpected; memorized
patterns cannot cover the wide range of real-life situations; the students must
be encouraged to use everyday language, typical for ordinary communicative
exchanges;
– analysing the needs of language learners in society, communicative teachers
concluded that people need primarily ORAL LANGUAGE SKILLS; however, reading and
writing must also be considered;
8. language is a mere medium for communication; communication has a social
PURPOSE
– language must not be taught for its own sake (e.g. for mastering patterns) but
for the purpose of sending and receiving messages;
– the learner must be given a purpose for producing language (e.g. exchanging
information, approving, or criticizing);
9. communication is basically INTERACTIVE
– classroom activities must simulate real-world interactions: the students
share and negotiate information, the way people do in real social and discoursal
contexts that imitate those in which real communication takes place;
n INTERACTIVE TECHNIQUES EG SIMULATION ROLE PLAY DEBATE ARE EFlCIENT
procedures for language learning;
10. language learning should be TASKORIENTED the students must be made to
perform tasks with the help of the language, the way people do in the real world;
11. language must be learned with the help of AUTHENTIC MATERIAL
– the textbook is only a framework for the teacher’s lesson;
– the teacher must use linguistic material similar to those from real life (e.g.
magazine articles, instructions of usage, guidebooks)
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MOTHER TONGUE is an important element of the students’ world: the students’
mother tongue should be used whenever explanations in the target language
would be time-consuming; translation is also accepted (Vizental 2008: 35–37).
The typical text of the communicative approach is the AUTHENTIC MATERIAL
Since communicative language teaching targets PRODUCTIVE and COMMUNICATIVE
SKILLS THE TEXTS MAY ONLY PROVIDE A FRAMEWORK FOR SUBSEQUENT ACTIVITIES AND THERE
must always be an information gap which will trigger exchange and negotiation
of meaning in students’ interactions. The communicative curriculum no longer
focuses on content (i.e. on the lessons to be learned) but on LANGUAGE FUNCTIONS By
emphasizing language functions, communicative teaching becomes COMPETENCY
based (i.e. learners must show what they can do with the help of the language)
and TASKORIENTED (i.e. they are taught to perform practical tasks with the help
of the language, in situations that simulate or approximate those encountered in
real life) (ibid. 39).
5. Current post-communicative paradigm
A number of new approaches to language learning have appeared in recent years.
They are called by Vizental the post-communicative turn (PCT), but the terms
ECLECTIC METHOD COGNITIVE METHOD POST METHOD, etc. are introduced by others
6IZENTAL  !LTHOUGH THEY CANNOT BE DESCRIBED AS A UNIlED THEORY THE NEW
methods show clearly that teachers have analysed the strengths and weaknesses
of the previous approaches thoroughly. The POSTCOMMUNICATIVE TURN 0#4
views language learning as:
TASKORIENTED: language learning focuses on meaning and on AUTHENTICACTIVITIES
(i.e. activities that approximate those in the outside world); the learners are
taught to use the language to construct and communicate meaning;
CONTEXTORIENTED: language learning is successful if the content to be taught
and the context of learning are compatible with the learner’s world knowledge
and personal experience;
collaborative: learning is achieved through social interaction and negotiation
of meaning;
cognitive: language learning must go hand in hand with CULTURAL AWARENESS;
the students are taught to differentiate between their mother tongue patterns and
those of the target culture;
– encourage LEARNER AUTONOMY: learners must control their own learning and
CONSTRUCT their own knowledge, they must be aware of the processes and strategies
of language learning (ibid. 44).
B. Kumaravadivelu calls this latter trend of language teaching methodology
the POSTMETHOD CONDITION “Having witnessed how methods go through endless
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93Translation in ESL Classes
cycles of life, death, and rebirth, the language teaching profession seems to
have reached a state of heightened awareness—an awareness that as long as it is
caught up in the web of method, it will continue to get entangled in an unending
search for an unavailable solution, an awareness that such a search drives it to
continually recycle and repackage the same old ideas, and an awareness that
nothing short of breaking the cycle can salvage the situation. This renewed
awareness coupled with a resolve to respond has created what I have called the
POSTMETHOD CONDITION” (Kumaravadivelu 2006: 162). Kumaravadivelu prefers
TO CALL THIS PERIOD POSTMETHOD RATHER THAN ECLECTIC AS HE BELIEVES IN THE QUASI
nietzschean) idea of the death of the Method, launched by the British applied
linguist Dick Allwright, who gave a plenary talk in 1991 at a conference at
Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada, a talk entitled 4HE DEATH OF THE METHOD.
The main idea of this talk was the unhelpfulness of the existence of ‘methods’.
!S +UMARAVADIVELU PUTS IT TEACHERS lND IT DIFlCULT TO DEVELOP A
… valuable, internally-derived sense of coherence about language teaching
in part because the transmission model of teacher education they may
have undergone does little more than passing on to them a ready-made
PACKAGE OF METHODS AND METHODRELATED BODY OF KNOWLEDGE 4HEY lND
SUCH A METHODBASED TEACHER EDUCATION WOEFULLY INADEQUATE TO MEET THE
challenges of the practice of everyday teaching. […] In a clear repudiation
of established methods and their estranged myths, teachers try to derive a
“method” of their own and call it ECLECTIC METHOD.
#ONSTRUCTING A PRINCIPLED ECLECTIC METHOD IS NOT EASY ;x= 4HE DIFlCULTIES
faced by teachers in developing an enlightened eclectic method are not
HARD TO lND IBID n
As Long states in the 2OUTLEDGE ENCYCLOPEDIA OF LANGUAGE TEACHING AND LEARNING
(Long 2000: 4), practising teachers end up with some form of eclectic method that
is usually little more than an amalgam of their inventors’ prejudices. Similarly,
Kumaravadivelu concludes that the POSTMETHOD CONDITION is
… a sustainable state of affairs that compels us to fundamentally restructure
our view of language teaching and teacher education. It urges us to review
the character and content of classroom teaching in all its pedagogical and
ideological perspectives. It drives us to streamline our teacher education by
RElGURING THE REIlED RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THEORY AND PRACTICE 0OSTMETHOD
pedagogy can be visualized as a three-dimensional system consisting of
three pedagogic parameters: particularity, practicality, and possibility. As
will become clear, each parameter shapes and is shaped by the others.
They interweave and interact with each other in a synergic relationship
where the whole is much more than the sum of its parts (Kumaravadivelu
2006: 170–171).
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-ANY OF THE PRINCIPLES AND TECHNIQUES OF THE POSTCOMMUNICATIVE TURN
have their roots in communicative teaching. Still, the performances of the
communicative approach are improved in the following points:
– grammar must be taught thoroughly;
– writing must be practised fully;
– literature must be given its due role.
That is why, according to Adriana Vizental, today’s teaching practice skillfully
COMBINES TECHNIQUES AND PROCEDURES BORROWED FROM PREVIOUS GENERATIONS
beginners, who basically need ACQUISITION OF LANGUAGE BENElT FROM THE
TECHNIQUES OF THE AUDIOLINGUAL methods; situational dialogues, pattern practice,
repetition and memorization, etc. lead to good linguistic habits;
– at advanced levels, when the students need to develop an ability to deal
with the language independently, the GRAMMARTRANSLATION method may produce
good results – after all, the grammar-translation method is still basic for achieving
“high culture”; theoretical presentation of grammar, translation, summarizing,
ETC ARE EFlCIENT TECHNIQUES FOR INDEPENDENT WORK
COMMUNICATIVE ACTIVITIES must be set at all levels, to supplement the
performances of the other approaches: the students must be made to develop
the text and interact with one another, express thoughts and feelings, negotiate
meanings, use the language functionally and strategically; by using authentic
material, setting up real-world-like situations, activating the students’
personal experience, and involving them emotionally, the teacher creates a
positive atmosphere that facilitates learning; communicative activities must be
ACCOMPANIED BY EFlCIENT ERRORCORRECTION TECHNIQUES
POSTCOMMUNICATIVE teachers rediscovered the value of WRITING in the
formation of the educated person; writing assignments can be TASKBASED lLL OUT
AN APPLICATION FORM ORDER A PRODUCT FROM A CATALOGUE lND INFORMATION ON THE
Internet, etc.); however, understanding the modern learner’s need to formulate
thoughts in writing in a systematic and educated way, post-communicative
teachers also returned to NONCOMMUNICATIVE subjective writing tasks (e.g. the
essay) (Vizental 2008: 45).
6. Translation tasks in foreign language classes
4HE QUESTION THAT WE TRY TO ANSWER IN THIS STUDY IS WHETHER TODAYS FOREIGN LANGUAGE
classes should or should not involve translation exercises. The answer to this
QUESTION SEEMS TO HAVE GIVEN BIRTH TO DEBATES AS THE NUMBER OF STUDIES AND ARTICLES
on this topic shows it. Let us try to summarize some of the main ideas of these
CONTRIBUTIONS4HElRST AND FOREMOSTDIFFERENCESHOULD BE MADEBETWEENPROFESSIONAL
and non-professional translation, called pedagogic or school translation.
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Kinga Klaudy separates pedagogical translation from real translation.
According to her:
Pedagogical and real translation can be distinguished on the basis of
function, object, and addressee. As regards function, in the case of
pedagogical translations, translation is a tool, whereas it is the goal of real
translations. We can speak of pedagogical translation when the aim of
teaching is not the development of translation skills, but the improvement
OF LANGUAGE PROlCIENCY )N SUCH CASES translation tasks serve merely as a
means of consciousness-raising, practicing, or testing language knowledge.
We can speak of real translation only if the aim of translation is to develop
translation skills. The two types of translation can be distinguished on the
basis of the object of the translation: while in real translation the translator
communicates information about reality, in pedagogical translation the
translator provides information about HISHER LEVEL OF PROlCIENCY
!ND lNALLY A DISTINCTION CAN BE MADE ON THE BASIS OF THE ADDRESSEE OF THE
translation: while in real translation the addressee is a reader, who wants
INFORMATION ABOUT REALITY UNSUSPECTING AND WELLINTENDED NOT SET TO lND
mistakes, in pedagogical translation, the addressee is the teacher or examiner,
WHO WANTS TO lND OUT ABOUT THE LANGUAGE PROlCIENCY OF THE TRANSLATOR AND FEELS
COMPELLED TO lND MISTAKES
From all this, it follows that real translator training starts where foreign
language teaching ends. In other words, in secondary schools, and even in the
foreign language departments of universities and colleges, we may only speak of
pedagogical translation, while the teaching of real translation remains the task of
translator and interpreter training colleges and postgraduate courses, designed
specially for this purpose (Klaudy 2003: 133).
Albert Vermes comes up with an overview of pros and cons of using translation
in ESL classes in his article 4RANSLATION IN FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHING A BRIEF
OVERVIEW OF PROS AND CONS (published in %GER *OURNAL OF %NGLISH 3TUDIES X
(2010): 83–93) The author starts up with the necessity of distinguishing between
pedagogical translation and real translation, as suggested by Klaudy (Klaudy
2003: 133).
! DISCUSSION OF TRANSLATION PEDAGOGY REQUIRES THAT A DISTINCTION BE MADE
between two types of translation, which she calls pedagogical translation
and real translation. [...] Pedagogical translation is an instrumental kind of
translation, in which the translated text serves as a tool of improving the
LANGUAGE LEARNERS FOREIGN LANGUAGE PROlCIENCY )N REAL TRANSLATION ON THE
other hand, the translated text is not a tool but the very goal of the process
(Vermes 2010: 83).
Another scholar referred to by Vermes is Gile (1995), whose distinction
between school translation and professional translation is essentially similar
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TO THAT SUGGESTED BY +LAUDY 'ILE DElNES SCHOOL TRANSLATION AS THE WRITING OF
texts following lexical and syntactic choices induced by the source-language
text, as opposed to professional translation, which is aimed at a reader who is
fundamentally interested in the contents of the text (Gile 1995: 22).
In school translation, the focus is on the language, while in professional
translation it is on the content of language. Professional translation can
thus be seen as a different level of translation, where linguistic problems,
in a strict sense, are a mere side issue. Thus the teaching of translation
FOR PROFESSIONAL PURPOSES IS ALSO QUALITATIVELY DIFFERENT FROM THE USE OF
translation in foreign language teaching (Vermes 2010: 84).
All in all, Klaudy’s (and Vermes’s) taxonomy deals with two kinds of
pedagogical translation:
– one serves as a tool of foreign language teaching and
– the other as a tool of translator training.
4HE OBJECT OF THE lRST IS INFORMATION ABOUT FOREIGN LANGUAGE PROlCIENCY
WHILE THE OBJECT OF THE SECOND IS INFORMATION ABOUT TRANSLATIONAL PROlCIENCY 4O
distinguish these two subtypes, Vermes uses Gile’s term SCHOOL TRANSLATION for the
lRST TYPE AND HE CALLS THE SECOND TYPE SIMULATED TRANSLATION.
The use of translation for the purposes of language teaching is bound
TO BE ASSOCIATED WITH THE 'RAMMAR4RANSLATION -ETHOD WHICH WAS lRST
employed in the secondary schools of Prussia at the end of the 18
th
century.
The method appeared as a reaction to a social need, as the teaching of modern
LANGUAGES TO MASSES OF LEARNERS WHO REQUIRED CHANGES IN EARLIER PRACTICES
OF LANGUAGE TEACHING 4HE 'RAMMAR4RANSLATION -ETHOD WAS A MODIlED
version of the ancient Scholastic Method, which was traditionally used
to study the written form of the classical languages through a meticulous
LEXICAL AND GRAMMATICAL ANALYSIS OF CLASSIC TEXTS 4HE lRST VOICE TO CRY OUT
against the use of translation in foreign language teaching came from the
Reform Movement of the late 19
th
century, and it was followed by a wave
of renewed attacks by proponents of the Audio-Lingual, the Direct, the
Natural, and the Communicative Language Teaching Methods throughout
the 20
th
century (ibid. 85–86).
Malmkjær provides some further general objections to school translation,
which are the following (Malmkjær 1998: 5):
4RANSLATION IS INDEPENDENT OF THE FOUR SKILLS WHICH DElNE LANGUAGE
competence: reading, writing, speaking and listening; it is radically
different from the four skills; it takes up valuable time which could be used
to teach these four skills; it is unnatural; it misleads students into thinking
that expressions in two languages correspond one-to-one; it produces
interference; it prevents students from thinking in the foreign language;
AND IT IS A BAD TEST FOR LANGUAGE SKILLS -ALMKJR QTD BY 6ERMES  
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6ERMES QUOTES ,ADO  WHO ARGUES AGAINST SCHOOL TRANSLATION ON THE
following grounds:
A 4HERE ARE FEW IF ANY FULLY EQUIVALENT WORDS IN TWO LANGUAGES B
3UPPOSING THAT THE WORDS IN THE TWO LANGUAGES ARE EQUIVALENT THE LEARNER
will mistakenly think that the translations can be used in the same situations
as the originals. Such overextensions produce interference phenomena in
LANGUAGE ACQUISITION C 7ORDFORWORD TRANSLATIONS RESULT IN INCORRECT
CONSTRUCTIONS ,ADO QTD BY 6ERMES  
(ELTAIS  lNDINGS SUGGEST THAT LANGUAGE LEARNERS AT THE INTERMEDIATE LEVEL
are not prepared to do translation in the true sense of the term.
“Their translations are dominated by decoding and encoding processes, and
exemplify a kind of semantic translation in which only the referential function of
the text is observed. Learners’ translations are clearly different from professional
translations in this regard.”
Vermes reaches the conclusion that:
…there are some good reasons in favour of the inclusion of translation
exercises in the foreign language syllabus or, at least, that there are
no fundamental reasons for its exclusion. The objections to the use of
translation in foreign language teaching are all based on a limited view
of translation. But translation is not only structure manipulation; it is
primarily a form of communication. And, as such, it necessarily involves
interaction and cooperation between people, which makes it a potentially
very useful device in foreign language teaching (Vermes 2010: 89).
Sandra J. Savignon also advocates the possibility of implementing translation
exercises in a communicative language teaching approach. Disappointment with
both grammar-translation and audio-lingual methods for their inability to prepare
learners for the interpretation, expression, and negotiation of meaning should not
impose a ban on using translation in activities labelled communicative.
Communicative language teaching need not entail complete rejection
of familiar materials. Materials designed to promote communicative
competence can be used as aids to memorization, repetition, and
translation, or for grammar exercises. Similarly, a teacher who has only
a grammar-translation manual can certainly teach for communicative
competence. What matters is the teacher’s understanding of what language
learning is and how it happens…. Finally, CLT does not exclude a focus
on metalinguistic awareness or knowledge of rules of syntax, discourse,
and social appropriateness. Focus on form can be a familiar and welcome
component in a learning environment that provides rich opportunity
for focus on meaning; but focus on form cannot replace practice in
communication (Savignon s.a.: 26–27).
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98 )MOLA +ATALIN .!'9
Sayuki Machida’s article, ! STEP FORWARD TO USING TRANSLATION TO TEACH A FOREIGN
SECOND LANGUAGE, presents a progress report on research into using translation as
an effective teaching method in a foreign/second language class.
“To be successful, the act of translating REQUIRES UNDERSTANDING OF THE ORIGINAL
text, and linguistic and non-linguistic abilities and skills to recreate the original
text meaning in another language.” Thus, according to Machida:
… in the current post-communicative, cognitive paradigm, translation as a
teaching method in the second/foreign language class has the following potential
strengths:
– it naturally creates more opportunities for the learners to focus not only on
meaning but also on the form of the text;
– working back and forth between L1 and L2 can naturally bring not only
explicit attention to the form and meaning of the text, but also discussion on
linguistic and non-linguistic forms;
– the act of translating can provide the learners with holistic challenging
projects, involving problem-solving, and integrate linguistic, cultural, and
pragmatic knowledge beyond communicating using language (Machida 2008).
In Machida’s research, feedback from the students and teacher observation have
SHOWN A DElNITELY POSITIVE ATTITUDE TOWARDS DEVELOPING THE act of translating
as a major method. “To conclude, considering the theoretical potential, positive
RECEPTION FROM THE STUDENTS THE ACTUAL OUTCOMES AND lNDINGS FROM THIS lRST
implementation, translation as a main teaching methodology is feasible, and
appears potentially an effective method for teaching L2” (Machida 2008: 154).
Bantas and Croitoru speak about translation as a profession and didactic
translation (Bantas–Croitoru 1999: 94), this latter being similar to Klaudy’s
PEDAGOGIC TRANSLATION $IDACTIC TRANSLATION IS VIEWED AS AN ACQUISITION METHOD
and competence test at the same time. It is part of the inter-linguistic teaching
strategy (ibid. 101). Bantas relies his advocacy on H. G. Widdowson (4EACHING
LANGUAGE AS COMMUNICATION, London: OUP, 1979: 101) and H. H. Stern ()SSUES
AND OPTIONS IN LANGUAGE TEACHING, Oxford: OUP, 1992: 279), who stand up, in
their work, for the use of translation exercises in inter-lingual teaching strategy,
as effective tools of foreign language teaching (Bantas–Croitoru 1999: 95).
The role of translation as a teaching tool grows when coming across pragmatic
issues, culture dependency, and topics involved in language teaching.
The approach to translation in an educational context, whereby words and
grammatical structures in the source language were replaced with their
@CORRECT EQUIVALENTS IN THE TARGET LANGUAGE DID NOT FAIL TO LEAVE ITS MARK
on the generations of translators regularly subjected to the process. […]
In addition to the part that it played in language teaching methodology,
TRANSLATION FULlLLED YET ANOTHER FUNCTION FOR MODERN %UROPEAN LINGUISTS
following in the footsteps of de Saussure. Unlike the UK and the USA, for
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99Translation in ESL Classes
many smaller nations in Europe, knowledge of more than one language
constitutes a lifeline with the outside world and contrastive studies of
modern languages have traditionally been a pursuit of scholarly interest […]
In addition to studying language as determined by social and geographical
FACTORS LINGUISTS HAVE ALSO BEGUN TO INVESTIGATE OTHER FACTORS INmUENCING
ITS USE .OW A DISCIPLINE IN ITS OWN RIGHT THE lELD OF PRAGMATICS is receiving
increasing attention among linguists interested in examining the purposes for
which sentences are used and the real-world conditions under which they are
appropriately uttered… Problems may, for instance, arise when speech acts are
transferred in translation: situations such as when we make a complaint or a
REQUEST OFFER AN APOLOGY OR GIVE A COMPLIMENT !NDERMAN  n
The importance of translation in communicative and post-communicative
language classrooms seems to be even more evident when thinking of the huge
INmUENCE PRAGMATICS PLAYED IN THE EMERGENCE OF COMMUNICATIVE LANGUAGE
teaching. When teaching English, one has to pay special attention to matters
like indirectness, politeness, speech acts, etc. Teaching the difference between
speech acts like (OW DO YOU DO, 7HAT DO YOU DO, 7HAT ARE YOU DOING, and
(OW ARE YOU MAY REQUIRE CERTAIN ELEMENTS OF TRANSLATION INTO MOTHER TONGUE AS
otherwise students may fail to comprehend that (OW DO YOU DO has turned, from
A PRAGMATIC VIEWPOINT INTO A GREETING FORMULA RATHER THAN AN INQUIRY EXPECTING
an answer related to one’s well-being.
 4RANSLATION TASKS IN TEXTBOOKS AND TEACHING RESOURCES
Relying on H. G. Widdowson’s idea that translation and turning sentences or
larger chunks of language from mother tongue to foreign language and vice-versa
can contribute to the enrichment of foreign language skills, we have tried to
uncover the way in which translation tasks are present in different manuals and
language books used by teachers of English (Widdowson 1979). We have selected
a number of activities, games, and exercises which appear in the following books:
Dókus Tünde, !NGOL SZITUÇCI×K (2002); Némethné Hock Ildikó, %XPRESS %NGLISH
!NGOL NYELVKÙNYV ) (1995); Paul Davis, -ORE GRAMMAR GAMES COGNITIVE AFFECTIVE
and movement activities for EFL (1995).
In Paul Davis’s More grammar games WE IDENTIlED THE FOLLOWING GAMES
relying on a certain amount of translation; we have included them in our corpus:
3ELFGENERATED LANGUAGE
It is a grammar game targeting beginner to elementary students. Here is a script
of the game with elements of translation or inter-linguistic shifts and use of
mother tongue highlighted.
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100 )MOLA +ATALIN .!'9
1. Ask for a volunteer to tell a story about themselves to the group. It may take
a moment for a teller to emerge. 4HE TELLER MAY SPEAK IN %NGLISH OR IN A MIXTURE
OF MOTHER TONGUE AND %NGLISH
 !SK THE TELLER TO TAKE THE PILE OF COLOURED SQUARES AND TO PUT ONE UP WHERE
THE CLASS CAN SEE IT AFTER SAYING EACH SENTENCE OF THEIR STORY 4HE COLOURED SQUARE
from then on represents that sentence.
3. Sit behind the teller. Ask the teller to begin. After each sentence you
repeat it in a form as close to the teller’s as possible. You give a helpful
counselling reformulation rather than a teacherly correction. When the
teller has said three or four sentences, stop them and point to one of the
THREE OR FOUR COLOURED SQUARES %ITHER THE TELLER OR SOMEONE IN THE GROUP
repeats the sentence represented by the card you are pointing to. Ask the
teller to go on. After two or three more sentences you ask someone to recap
from the beginning.
 7HEN THE TELLER HAS lNISHED THE STORY ASK STUDENTS TO POINT TO CARDS THEY
remember and to say what they can bring back to mind. Each student may work
from one card only, so there is sharing rather than people with good memories
monopolizing.
Variation:
At the beginning of a lesson, divide the class into small groups, and give out
copies of the )NSTRUCTIONS SHEET below,
1
TOGETHER WITH SETS OF n SQUARE CARDS
Leave the room for a good 30 minutes. It’s important to resist the temptation to
keep popping back. 9OU MAY WANT TO REWRITE THE HANDOUT HALF IN MOTHER TONGUE
AND HALF IN %NGLISH if the class level is very low. It is good to use mixed language
texts with beginners.
n ! SPRINKLING OF PEOPLE
It is a game meant to practise collective nouns and it can be played with upper
intermediate or advanced students. Here is a script of the game with elements of
translation or inter-linguistic shifts and use of mother tongue highlighted.
1. Tell the students you are going to dictate a list of phrases to them. Ask them
TO ESTIMATE AND WRITE DOWN THE NUMBER OF INDIVIDUALS THEY WOULD EXPECT TO lND
in each collective, e.g. ‘a herd of elephants: 10–30’.
1 Instruction sheet
1. Please read these instructions.
2. Choose a leader. The leader will organize your work.
3. Choose a story-teller. The story-teller will tell a personal story or describe a place.
 'IVE THE COLOURED SQUARES TO THE STORY TELLER 4HEY PRODUCE A SENTENCE AND PUT DOWN A CARD
The card represents the sentence.
5. The story-teller begins.
6. After two or three sentences, the leader stops the story-teller, points to a sentence card and
asks someone to reproduce the sentence. The leader does this after every two to three sentences.
7. Take twenty minutes to tell the story this way. At the end, one person tells the whole story.
 %VERYBODY WRITES THEIR VERSION OF THE STORY 4HEY HAVE ANOTHER lFTEEN MINUTES TO DO THIS
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101Translation in ESL Classes
A clump of trees / a party of tourists / a gang of terrorists / a unit of freedom
lGHTERS A mEET OF SHIPS A SPATE OF RUMOURS A TROOP OF MONKEYS A GAGGLE OF
GEESE A SQUADRON OF lGHTER PLANES A CLUTCH OF EGGS A SEA OF FACES A PRIDE OF
lions / a hail of bullets / a pack of wolves / a litter of kittens / a school of dolphins
A mIGHT OF STEPS
2. Write up the words you reckon may have been misspelt. The students check
the meanings with you.
3. Get estimates from round the class of the numbers in typical groups e.g. ‘a
clump of trees is a lot less than a little wood’.
 !SK THEM TO IDENTIFY THE lVE PHRASES THAT ARE THE LEAST EASY TO TRANSLATE INTO
THEIR MOTHER TONGUE 4HEY COMPARE PHRASES
5. Explain that in English you sometimes have a choice of collective nouns.
Tell them you will read out pairs of phrases – they are to take down the one they
prefer in each pair. Read each pair of phrases twice:
A mOCK OF BIRDS A mIGHT OF BIRDS
A SWARM OF INSECTS A COLONY OF INSECTS
A HERD OF GOATS A mOCK OF GOATS
A TROUPE OF ACTORS A COMPANY OF ACTORS
A WAD OF BANKNOTES A ROLL OF BANKNOTES
a pack of cards a deck of cards
a team of experts a panel of experts
A BUNCH OF GRAPES A CLUSTER OF GRAPES
A SHEAF OF PAPERS A BUNDLE OF PAPERS
A CROWD OF REPORTERS A GAGGLE OF REPORTERS
A GANG OF THIEVES A PACK OF THIEVES
Write up any words they are unsure how to spell, e.g. ‘troupe’ rather
than ‘troop’. Group them in threes to explain their choices of phrase. Now pair
the students and give out the #OLLECTIVE PHRASE QUESTIONNAIRE.
2
Ask the students
TO WORK THROUGH IT EACH ANSWERING EACH OF THE QUESTIONS
2 #/,,%#4)6% 0(2!3% 15%34)/..!)2%
– Have you ever been in a party of tourists? How many of you were there?
– Can you think of a clump of trees near your house? Roughly how many trees?
(AVE YOU EVER SEEN A SHOAL OF lSH 7HERE 7HAT TIME OF THE DAY WAS IT
– What do you call a big group of bees on the wing? When did you last see a swarm of bees?
– What do you feel on seeing a litter of new-born puppies?
– When did you last carry round a wad of banknotes? Do you often do this? How do you feel if
it is a really thick roll?
– Have you ever baked a cake? Have you ever baked a batch of cakes or tarts?
– I bet you have a bunch of keys in your bag/pocket. How many in the bunch?
)S THERE A mIGHT OF STEPS NEAR YOUR HOME (OW LONG WOULD IT DOES IT TAKE YOU TO GET UP THEM
How many steps are there, approximately?
– How many cards are there in a deck of cards? Are there any special cards in your country with
a different number in the pack?
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102 )MOLA +ATALIN .!'9
n (AVES AND HAVENOTS
It is a game which involves dictation and addresses intermediate students.
Here is a script of the game with elements of translation or inter-linguistic shifts
and use of mother tongue highlighted.
1 Give out a copy of (AVES AND HAVENOTS worksheet to each student.
Alternatively, you could get the students to make the worksheet. Tell them to
turn their pages longways and rule four columns with the following headings:
 ) SMELL) TASTE  ) HEAR  ) SEE  &EEL THROUGH MY BODY
2. Tell the students you are going to dictate short sentences to them. Ask them
TO EXPERIENCE THESE AS SITUATIONS )F THEY lRST HEAR the situation, they write it in
COLUMN TWO )F THEY lRST feel the situation, they write it in column four, etc. Many
people will see, hear, and feel many of the situations. The choice of column is
governed by which of these things they actually do lRST n WHAT POPS UP lRST FROM
the unconscious.
3. Dictate each sentence/phrase twice,
3
leaving time for students to conjure
up the situations.
4. Put the students in threes and ask them to compare where they put the
sentences. Ask them to share some of the situations they smelled, heard, saw, or felt.
5. Ask them to go back over the sentences and decide which, WHEN TRANSLATED INTO
THEIR MOTHER TONGUE WOULD NOT HAVE THE EQUIVALENT OF THE VERB @TO HAVE IN THEM. (In
Italian, you make a dream and in both Greek and Japanese you see a dream.)
n 4HE WORLD OF TAKE
It is a game for intermediate students. Here is a script of the game with elements
of translation or inter-linguistic shifts and use of mother tongue highlighted.
1. Put the students in small groups to brainstorm all the uses of the verb take
they can think of.
7HEN DID YOU LAST GIVE SOMEONE A BOUQUET OF mOWERS /R RECEIVE A BUNCH OF mOWERS
– What would you mean if you said that most of the audience in the theatre were Japanese but
that there was also a sprinkling of French?
3 Dictation sentences for (AVES AND HAVE NOTS
) HAVE A HEADACHE
) WENT TO HOSPITAL AND HAD A BABY
) HAVE IT IN ME TO DO GREAT THINGS
) HAD A GOOD BREAKFAST
3HE HAD IT OFF WITH HIM
#HILDREN LOVE TO HAVE STORIES READ TO THEM
3HE HAD SOME MONEY STOLEN
) HAD A DREAM LAST NIGHT
) HAD MY HEAD DOWN
) HAD A SMALL OPERATION ON MY NOSE
(E HATES HIM HE REALLY HAS IT IN FOR HIM
4HE POLICE HAD ME UP FOR SPEEDING
7E HAD THE GRASS CUT
) HAVE TWO VERY GOOD FRIENDS
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103Translation in ESL Classes
2. Ask each group to send a messenger to the next group to pass on their ideas.
 $ICTATE THE SENTENCES BELOW
WHICH THEY ARE TO WRITE DOWN IN THEIR MOTHER
TONGUE 4ELL THEM ONLY TO WRITE IN MOTHER TONGUE NOT %NGLISH. Be ready to help
explain any sentences that students do not understand.
 !SK THE STUDENTS TO WORK IN THREES AND COMPARE THEIR TRANSLATIONS. Go round
helping and checking. If your students do not share the same mother tongue, group
students from the same language or language groups. In this sort of class, you will
probably have three or four people from unrelated languages working together as
well. They will learn a lot about each other’s languages from this exercise.
The rationale of this game is that students come to see how similar and how
different the grammars of mother tongue and of foreign languages actually are.
As the author, Paul Davis, puts it, this game is “a gem of a translation exercise,
as you have the author of what you are translating there at your elbow. You are
translating within a living relationship and you are a protagonist rather than a
third party, as is the case in an interpreting situation” (Davis 1995).
Another type of exercise involving translation is the mixed language
conversation. Dókus Tünde’s book, !NGOL SZITUÇCI×K, provides a whole array of
situations, model conversations, and mixed language conversations which can
be adapted for a communicative language classroom. A conversation like the
one below can be used in pairs, in small groups; it can be cut into halves, then
reconstructed and acted out; it can be used even as a lockstep activity (the teacher
dictates the sentences in mother tongue; when role-playing it, the students have
to translate their replies on the spot), etc. An introductory description of the
situation may be provided not only in mother tongue (as in this example provided
here) but also in English.
¼N NAGYON ROSSZUL ÎRZI MAGÇT EZÎRT FELHÒVJA KßLFÙLDI BARÇTJÇT HOGY
LEMONDJA AZ ESTI VACSORAMEGHÒVÇST +ÎRJEN ELNÎZÎST ÎS MONDJA EL HOGY
MIK A PANASZAI &OGADJA EL A FELAJÇNLOTT SEGÒTSÎGET
4 Dictation sentences for 4HE WORLD OF TAKE
4HE NEW PRESIDENT TOOK OVER IN *ANUARY
4HE MAN TOOK THE WOMANS ANGER SERIOUSLY
@9OU HAVENT DONE THE WASHING UP ) TAKE IT HIS WIFE SAID TO HIM
4HE LITTLE BOY TOOK THE OLD WATCH APART TO SEE HOW IT WORKED
@) THINK WE OUGHT TO TAKE THE CAR HE SAID TO HER
4HIS BLOKE ALWAYS TAKES HIS PROBLEMS TO HIS MOTHER
@7E TOOK THE VILLAGE WITHOUT A SHOT BEING lRED SHE TOLD HIM
@4AKE CARE THE WOMAN SAID AS SHE LEFT HOME THAT MORNING
(E TOOK CHARGE OF THE PLANNING TEAM
4HE WOMAN ASKED WHAT SIZE SHOES HE TOOK
@9ES ) REALLY TAKE YOUR POINT HE TOLD HER
@)F WE GO TO A MOVIE SHE TOLD HER BOYFRIEND @ITLL REALLY TAKE YOU OUT OF YOURSELF
4HE NEWS THE BOY BROUGHT REALLY TOOK THE WOMAN ABACK
4HE CHAIR ASKED HIM TO TAKE THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING
@9OU CAN TAKE IT FROM ME ITS WORSE THAN YOU THINK
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104 )MOLA +ATALIN .!'9
3ZIA $ÇNIELŕ ,ACI VAGYOK
(ELLO ,ACIŕ ) JUST WANTED TO CALL YOU TO SAY THAT THE RESERVATION IS OKAY 7E
HAVE A TABLE FOR TWO AT SEVEN
0ONT EZÎRT TELEFONÇLOK 3AJNOS SEMMIKÎPPEN SEM TUDOK MENNI .EM
TUDOM MI TÙRTÎNT DE BORZALMASAN ÎRZEM MAGAM
4HAT SOUNDS TERRIBLEŕ ) HOPE ITS NOT TOO BAD 7HATS THE PROBLEM
2ETTENTŐEN FÇJ A GYOMROM ,EHET HOGY ATT×L A GULYÇST×L AMIT EBÎDRE ETTEM
.EM VAGYOK HOZZÇSZOKVA A NEHÎZ ÎTELEKHEZ
!RE YOU SURE YOU CANT COME 9OU MIGHT FEEL BETTER BY SEVEN
.EM HISZEM &EL SEM TUDOK KELNI !MINT FELÇLLOK RÙGTÙN ELKEZDEK SZÎDULNI
4HEN ) THINK YOU SHOULD SEE A DOCTOR /R BETTER STILL ) WILL CALL MY DOCTOR
AND ASK HER TO HAVE A LOOK AT YOU
!ZT HISZEM TÎNYLEG LENNE HA KIHÒVNÇD AZ ORVOST
) THINK YOU NEED LOOKING AFTER 9OU KNOW WHAT ) WILL COME OVER TO YOU AND
MAKE YOU SOMETHING TO EAT
.AGYON KEDVES TŐLED DE EGY FALATOT SEM TUDNÎK LENYELNI (ÇNYINGEREM
VAN HA ÎTELRE GONDOLOK $E HA ÇTJÙSSZ TALÇN JOBBAN FOGOM MAGAM ÎREZNI
!LL RIGHTŕ 3EE YOU LATERŕ (Dókus 2002)
Némethné Hock Ildikó’s %XPRESS %NGLISH provides a long list of simulations and
role plays; most of them being in mother tongue, students are asked to perform
the conversation in English (Hock 1995).
!NGOL ISMERŐSE -AGYARORSZÇGON SZERETNE LETELEPEDNI *AVASOLJA NEKI HOGY
NE EGY NAGYVÇROSBAN HANEM VIDÎKEN VEGYEN HÇZAT µRJA LE RÎSZLETESEN A VIDÎKI
ÎLET ELŐNYEIT -IKÙZBEN ISMERŐSE A VÇROSI ÎLET POZITÒV OLDALAIT EMELI KI MONDJA
EL NEKI HOGY VIDÎKEN IS AZ ELLÇTÇS -INDEN KÎNYELEM MEGVAN KOCSIVAL PEDIG
NINCS MESSZE A VÇROS A SZÒNHÇZ A NAGYOBB ÇRUHÇZAK
(ÒVJA MEG A BARÇTJÇT EGY SZÒNHÇZI ELŐADÇSRAŕ -ONDJA EL HOGY EZ EGY NAGYON
HÒRES DARAB ÎS BÇR AZ ELŐADÇS CSAK EGY HÎT MÝLVA LESZ MÇR MOST MEG KELL VENNI
A JEGYEKET MERT HÇTHA ELFOGYNAK )SMERŐSE A PÇHOLYBA SZERETNE ßLNI DE ¼N ÝGY
GONDOLJA HOGY ODA TÝL DRÇGA EGY JEGY $ÙNTSÎK EL HOGY VÎGßL IS HOVA FOGJÇK KÎRNI
A JEGYET ÎS MELYIK ELŐADÇSRA MENNEK EL
¼N ELMEGY AZ ORVOSHOZ MERT NAGYON FÇJ A KARJA !Z ORVOS ÎRDEKLŐDÎSÎRE
ELMONDJA HOGY MÇR EGY HETE ÎRZI A FÇJDALMAT ÎS AKKOR A LEGROSSZABB AMIKOR
REGGEL FELKEL $E TULAJDONKÎPPEN EGÎSZ NAP FÇJ ÎS GYAKRAN A MUNKÇT IS ABBA KELL
HAGYNIA HOGY PIHENJEN 0R×BÇLT MÇR KENŐCSÙT IS TENNI RÇ DE AZ SEM SEGÒTETT
Sentence level translation can be used especially in the case of passive voice,
where the following types of model sentences can be used in the presentation
and the practice stages of grammar lessons. Nevertheless, this does not mean
that the production phase cannot rely on translation tasks as well, only that
they should be embedded in more communicative tasks or they should be made
communicative by the use of information gap and interaction.
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105Translation in ESL Classes
(E IS NOT OFTEN INVITED TO PARTIES .EM HÒVJÇK MEG GYAKRAN BULIKBA
7HEN WAS THIS HOUSE BUILT -IKOR ÎPßLT EZ A HÇZ
7HO WAS THIS NOVEL WRITTEN BY +I ÒRTA EZT A REGÎNYT
4HE 0RIME -INISTER HAS BEEN SHOT ! MINISZTERELNÙKÙT LELŐTTÎK
) CANT WORK -Y OFlCE IS BEING CLEANED .EM TUDOK DOLGOZNI 4AKARÒTJÇK AZ
IRODÇMAT
) TURNED ROUND AND SAW THAT ) WAS BEING FOLLOWED !MIKOR MEGFORDULTAM
LÇTTAM HOGY KÙVETNEK
!LL THESE BOOKS WERE PUBLISHED IN "RITAIN %ZEKET A KÙNYVEKET MIND .AGY
"RITANNIÇBAN ADTÇK KI
4HE 4OWER CAN BE FOUND IN ,ONDON ! 4OWER ,ONDONBAN TALÇLHAT×
(ER BLOOD PRESSURE MUST BE CHECKED REGULARLY ! VÎRNYOMÇSÇT RENDSZERESEN
ELLENŐRIZNI KELL
 COPIES OF THIS MAGAZINE HAVE TO BE SOLD  PÎLDÇNYT EL KELL ADNI EBBŐL A
FOLY×IRATB×L
(OMEWORK SHOULD BE DONE PROPERLY ! HÇZI FELADATOT J×L KELLENE MEGCSINÇLNI
4HE mOWERS NEEDNT BE WATERED ! VIRÇGOKAT NEM KELL MEGÙNTÙZNI
9OU MAY BE ASKED SILLY QUESTIONS ,EHET HOGY BUTA KÎRDÎSEKET KAPSZ
9OU ARE GOING TO BE WATCHED &IGYELNI FOGNAK
)F YOU DIDNT HELP ME THE HOUSE WOULD NEVER BE SOLD (A TE NEM SEGÒTENÎL EZ A
HÇZ SOHASEM LENNE ELADVA
5
8. Conclusions
We can conclude that, after being neglected in the times of audio-lingual methods,
translation started to be reintroduced in foreign language classes in the decades
of communicative and post-communicative language teaching. What is important
with translation tasks in communicative and/or post-communicative language
classrooms is that they should always be integrated within a communicative
activity. As Widdowson puts it:
…the incorporation of translation into these procedures [of language
teaching] ensures that it is carried out as a communicative activity. Their
purpose is to make clear to the learner just what is involved in such an
activity by relating it to his own experience of language. Translation here is
an operation on language use and not simply on language usage and aims
at making the learner aware of the communicative value of the language he
is learning by overt reference to the communicative functioning of his own
language (Widdowson 1979: 160).
5 Sample sentences taken from Ildikó Némethné Hock’s %XPRESS %NGLISH.
Unauthenticated
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106 )MOLA +ATALIN .!'9
Sentences like the ones above can be used as a starting point for a dialogue;
THEY CAN BE USED AS lRST OR LAST SENTENCES OF A STORY BOTH ORAL AND WRITTEN
Translation can be integrated into dialogues, pair work, or group work activities.
The sentences used for translation should also be as real-life-like as possible;
sentence level and text level translation – even when focusing on a certain
grammar item – should replicate a real world situation or reply and they should
ALWAYS BE PERSONALIZED SO AS TO lT STUDENTS DAILY LINGUISTIC ENCOUNTERS 4HERE
are plenty of teaching materials and resources at language teachers’ disposal; it
is up to them to use these materials in their classes by transforming them into
communicative activities rather than using boring and mechanical translation
exercises. Since translation is a universally useful activity, which has the power
and capacity to bridge the gaps between cultures, we daresay it is a skill whose
development should also be incorporated in today’s teaching activities, alongside
the other four language skills. The key element of today’s foreign language teaching
is real-life-like communication, situations, speech acts, and language functions
that replicate real world situations and contexts. Integrating translation tasks in
such real life communication may maximize students’ foreign language skills by
implementing in classroom activities what happens in real life: as translation
happens in the minds of foreign language learners, no matter we admit it or not.
References
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Bantas, Andrei–Croitoru, Elena. 1999. $IDACTICA TRADUCERII "UCUREŊTI 4EORA
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activities for EFL. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Dókus, Tünde. 2002. !NGOL SZITUÇCI×K. Székesfehérvár: Lexika Kiadó.
Klaudy, K. 2003. ,ANGUAGES IN TRANSLATION. Budapest: Scholastica.
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LANGUAGE TEACHING. London: Routledge. pp. 4–5.
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Machida, Sayuki. 2008. A step forward to using translation to teach a foreign/
second language. %LECTRONIC *OURNAL OF &OREIGN ,ANGUAGE 4EACHING 5(Suppl.
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classroom practice. http://yalepress.yale.edu/excerpts/0300091567_1.pdf.
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of pros and cons. In: %GER *OURNAL OF %NGLISH 3TUDIES X: 83–93.
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This book traces the historical development of major language teaching methods in terms of theoretical principles and classroom procedures, and provides a critical evaluation of each. Drawing from seminal, foundational texts and from critical commentaries made by various scholars, Kumaravadivelu examines the profession's current transition from method to postmethod and, in the process, elucidates the relationship between theory, research, and practice. The chief objective is to help readers see the pattern that connects language, learning, teaching methods, and postmethod perspectives. In this book, Kumaravadivelu: brings together a critical vision of L2 learning and teaching--a vision founded at once on historical development and contemporary thought;, connects findings of up-to-date research in L2 learning with issues in L2 teaching thus making the reader aware of the relationship between theory, research and practice;, presents language teaching methods within a coherent framework of language-, learner-, and learning-centered pedagogies, thus helping the reader to see how they are related to each other;, shows how the three categories of methods evolved historically leading ultimately (and inevitably) to the emergence of a postmethod condition; and provides the reader with a solid background in several interconnected areas of L2 pedagogy, such as concepts of competence, input factors, intake processes, interactional modifications, and instructional design. Understanding Language Teaching: From Method to Postmethod is intended for an international audience of teacher educators, practicing teachers and graduate students, researchers, curriculum planners, and materials designers in the field of second and foreign language teaching. © 2006 by Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc. All rights reserved.
Article
In this paper I examine why translation has become an outlaw in certain circles in foreign language teaching. A list of the most common objections to using translation in the classroom will be contrasted with possible counter-objections, on the basis of which I support the view that translation can be used in a meaningful way in the teaching of foreign languages. Quite obviously, this view leads to a number of further questions concerning when, how, in what circumstances, and for what purposes translation may be usefully employed. These questions, however, cannot be discussed within the limits of the present paper. 1 Pedagogical translation versus real translation According to Klaudy (2003: 133), a discussion of translation pedagogy requires that a distinction be made between two types of translation, which she calls pedagogical translation and real translation. Pedagogical and real translation differ from each other on three counts: the function, the object, and the addressee of the translation. As regards function, pedagogical translation is an instrumental kind of translation, in which the translated text serves as a tool of improving the language learner's foreign language proficiency. It is a means of consciousness-raising, practising, or testing language knowledge. Lesznyák (2003: 61) points out two additional functions of pedagogical translation: illumination and memorisation. In real translation, on the other hand, the translated text is not a tool but the very goal of the process. The object of real translation is information about reality, contained in the source text, whereas in pedagogical translation it is information about the language learner's level of language proficiency. There is also a difference concerning the addressee of the two kinds of translation. In real translation it is a target language reader wanting some information about reality, while in pedagogical translation the addressee is the language teacher or the examiner, wanting information about the learner's proficiency.
Article
The article presents a progress report on research into using translation as an effective teaching method in a foreign/second language class. The report includes a) research into the use of translation in the past; b) first approach: adaptation of approaches used in translation courses; c) feedback from the trial; and d) further in- vestigation into using translation as a second language teaching methodology. A student survey about the initial application of translation found their range of expectations for the subject and revealed diversity in their first and second language abilities. The students' work showed the common errors they would make even after consulting dictionaries and 'translation aids'. As a result, 'translation' could be understood from a wider perspective. Finally, possible further development of the act of translating as a teaching methodology in the advanced level second/foreign language class is discussed.
Linguistics and translation
  • Gunilla Anderman
Anderman, Gunilla. 2007. Linguistics and translation. In: Kuhiwczak, Piotr– Littau, Karin (eds),. Clevedon – Buffalo – Toronto: Multilingual Matters Ltd. 45–62.
Székesfehérvár: Lexika Kiadó. Savignon, Sandra J classroom practice
  • Hock Némethné
  • Ildikó
Némethné, Hock Ildikó. 1995.. Székesfehérvár: Lexika Kiadó. Savignon, Sandra J classroom practice. http://yalepress.yale.edu/excerpts/0300091567_1.pdf.
Linguistics and translation A companion to translation studies
  • Anderman
  • Gunilla