Students in ALG Programs are grouped according to their ability to understand. This maximizes their interest levels and enables them to continue at a pace that is right for them individually.
If you've ever watched a one-year-old child communicating with those around him, you have a picture of "how" a person gains understanding in the ALG Program.
Adults like concrete things that can be "known" - right now! Children are much happier with approximations and seem to enjoy making guesses about the world they live in. It is this very thing that enables children to acquire language so easily - and adults too for that matter.
As adults apply these same principles to language learning, they acquire a new language - even faster than a child!
ALG offers to our students, the opportunity of a life-time... to learn a second language as we have all learned our own native languages!
Why not translate? It's obviously much faster!
First, children can't - and everyone agrees that they're the best language learners of all. If a child can't translate then we don't need to either. If a child doesn't practice vocabulary words or pronunciation, then we don't need to either. (Does practice really make perfect?)
Second, by gaining understanding from the 'whole' of our surroundings, we receive input and meaning that we miss entirely when we focus on language alone.
Translating is only faster in the short term and actually inhibits normal language growth. That's why adults never seem to achieve the results that children do everywhere.
By giving language the opportunity to 'grow', we are able to achieve the depth and usage of a native speaker.