Should Language Students Learn to Translate?

Scenes From The Battleground

As you may be aware, as well as blogging here, I also run (with not inconsiderable help from others) another website – The Echo Chamber – which provides links to other education blogs. Although part of the ethos of the site is to publicise blogs from teachers whose opinions are not widely represented in education debate outside of the blogosphere (i.e. people like me) the criteria for inclusion in the site are fairly broad and I frequently share blogs that I do not necessarily agree with.

One interesting blogpost that I shared yesterday, although I didn’t particularly agree with the conclusion, was about translation in language teaching. It has always surprised me when reading about the school days of people who were educated in the first half of the 20th century that language teaching (both ancient and modern) often seemed to include translation of passages of English into another…

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