Like other methods, the direct method also has assumptions about language learning. Some of the assumption seen to be similar to natural method. The following are basic assumptions about language learning of the direct method.
- Meaning are made clear by presenting physical objects, such as pictures, gestures and pantomimes. Translation may be an easy way to make meaning clear but it will not make the students learn the target language narurally. Natural learning proves to be more effective in learning another language.
- Self-correction is more emphasized than teacher correction. This will make the students think in the target language, not do parroting. This can be done by asking them to make a choice between what they said and an alternative answer provided by the teacher. Self-correction can also done by repeating what they said in a questioning voice to signal to the students that there is something wrong.
- Vocabulary is learned more effectively if they use it in full sentences rather than memorize it. The teacher can repeat new words by asking them to the students several times in different contexts and eliciting the situations in order for the students to use the words.
- Teaching another language means taking a role as a partner of the students in communications. The interaction between the teacher and the students are two-way interaction. The teacher can ask the student and vice versa. Besides functioning as a partner, the teacher is also a facilitator; he can show the students what errors they have made and how they correct the errors.
- Students should learn to think in the target language as soon as possible. The teacher avoids teaching individual words and full sentences will encourage the student to think in the target language. Vocabulary is acquired more easily and naturally if the students use it in full sentences, rather than memorizing word lists.
- Students should be actively involved in using the target language in realistic everyday situations.