Bilingual Method is one of many teaching methods of English language. This method of teaching Foreign language was developed by C.J Dodson in 1967. The method is used where two languages i.e. the mother tongue and target language are used. In this method, the mother tongue is used to achieve the target language ( here it is English) .
The method is based on the principles of similarities and differences which is found between the two languages. These may be of situation, sounds, vocabulary, structure etc. If the learner/the teacher understands these differences, the learning of the target language is facilitated considerably.
When the child is learning his mother tongue, he becomes acquainted with the situations and picks up the language easily and correctly. While learning the foreign language, the same situations are created again in order to make the child learn the foreign language.
What is the belief behind Bilingual Method ?
The advocates of bilingual method believe that it is merely wastage of time as there is duplicity of the same thing. It is suggested that the saved time may be utilized for giving practice in sentence pattern.
Advantages of Bilingual Method –
1. The teacher is able to teach English to the entire satisfaction of the students.
2. The students are also able to understand English well.
3. Right use of mother tongue by the teacher does not spoil the environment of teaching English. It just helps in teaching English better.
4. This method helps in developing fluency in spoken English.
5. Bilingual Method also helps in giving proper training for different skills namely listening, speaking, reading and writing.
6. The use of mother tongue saves a lot time and makes learning easier. Complex things can be easily explained in the mother tongue.
Disadvantages of Bilingual Method –
1. Using this method, the teacher teaches English through English language and sometimes he uses his mother tongue and this practice diverts the attention of the students.
2. Sometimes it happens that the teacher of English language may not be good in both the languages. He doesn’t get perfection in any of the languages as his labor is also distributed between the two languages.
3. The use of mother tongue while teaching English language may spoil the continuity and fluency of the language.
4. It is the possibility that a few students in the class may be more attentive to mother tongue sounds and less attentive to English Sounds. As a result their pronunciation may become defective.