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What is Direct Method?


The direct method of teaching, which is sometimes called the natural method, and is often (but not exclusively) used in teaching foreign languages, refrains from using the learners' native language  and uses only the target language . It was established in Germany and France around 1900 and contrasts with the Grammar translation method and other traditional approaches, as well as with C.J.Dodson's bilingual methods . It was adopted by key international language schools such as Berlitz and Inlingua in the 1970s and many of the language departments of the Foreign Service Institute of the U.S. State Department in 2012.

In general, teaching focuses on the development of oral skills. Characteristic features of the direct method are:

  • teaching concepts and vocabulary through pantomiming, real-life objectives and other visual materials
  • teaching grammar by using an inductive approach (i.e. having learners find out rules through the presentation of adequate linguistic forms in the target language)
  • centrality of spoken language (including a native-like pronunciation)
  • focus on question-answer patterns
  1. French language
  2. Russian language
  3. Italian language
  4. Spanish language
  5. English language
  6. German language