The immersive communicative method
is the usual way of learning a language now I think.
The older way would use a lot of English (or whatever your first language is) and would have a lot of written translation work (exam orientated) rather than productive spoken language.
I think it requires much more skill from the teacher.
My Japanese classes were in Japanese (mostly).
We all got a shock the first day when everyone thought that the teacher couldn't speak English because she arrived speaking Japanese to us when we had zero Japanese skills!
All the grammar and vocabulary were taught through Japanese with a lot of pictures, gestures and acting. The last 10 minutes or so were given over to "Lets speak English and Japanese" where things were clarified, but the rule for the majority of the class was No English. We probably could have done without the English bit and it got less and less as the classes progressed over the years.
Basic, Intermediate and Advanced language are kind of arbitrary distinctions. You need the language you need to perform a task. So it could jump around a bit. The only thing I can see as making these distinctions is Advanced language builds on the structures in Intermediate and Basic. it's easier to learn ta form if you've learnt te form, easier to make tara construction if you know ta form and so on. Perhaps your teacher wants to make sure of a more basic grammar point in order to build on it.
Even in Japanese you jump in at a more advanced level of masu form, because it is immediately useable in all situations, rather than the more basic plain form which might be more useful to build grammar explanations on but is less useful in trying to speak to Japanese as an adult stranger.
English lessons are usually like this with no chance of explanations in your mother tongue because there are so many different learners. Most web sites I see for English are in English too. It's strange but it works. Maybe the student just has to do a bit more research on their own. The hardest leap is to get to a place where you can talk about the language and definitions in the target language.
(It could be like the Tom Cruise method of Japanese where you go from mimi and hana to fluent Japanese sufficient to talk to samurai nobles over the course of a winter while held captive in a remote village.... )
Also, I don't think CLT is used much for English in Japanese schools. Maybe that might be part of why after 5 years of English in school Japanese still feel they can't speak English.