Using Translation Constructively in the English Lesson
Keywords:English language teaching, mother tongue, translation, learning strategy training
The general contention that the English lessons should be given only in English has been challenged. Students’ mother tongue is indispensible, even unavoidable in the English classroom. Especially translation, which is a real life task, and a common strategy to understand a new language at the very early levels, can be constructive to learning when brought to the classroom. However, translation activities such as translation of coursebook texts, mot-a-mot translation of sentences, and translation of instructions by the teacher can be counter-productive in that they cause negative attitudes on the part of the students. This article presents an activity which is designed according to the basic principles of using translation constructively in the English classroom. It was implemented in a primary school English lesson, and the results were presented. By this means, it was aimed to reposition translation as a learning strategy in the language classroom, with an effective application.