PEARTREE LIFE: Experiencing Languages

Hosting foreign students can be a rewarding experience

Have you been thinking about hosting foreign students, but you are not completely sure about it? You might not know what is involved in hosting students, what to do or how to behave, or even if it is suitable for your household.

Peartree Languages is looking for new host families and as we understand that making this sort of decision might be difficult, we asked one of our hosts to share her experience of hosting and maybe it will help you to decide.

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Hello. I’d like to share my experience of hosting an international student with you. Last summer my little new family – my partner and our then 6-month old baby- hosted an Italian girl for the duration of two weeks. The reasons why we decided to do it were varied. My partner and I both like anything to do with Italy so forging a personal link with the country was very attractive to us but we also wanted to see what it would be like living with a third adult in our tiny 2-bed house as at the time we were considering getting an au-pair for our baby. As an English teacher I had also been playing with the idea of running short all –inclusive courses for foreign students from our home –once we moved to a bigger property. Therefore hosting a foreign student for two weeks seemed like an ideal opportunity to try out all of our ideas.

Do not hesitate to host students and just give it a go
The Italian student living with us was a 15-year old girl from Milan called Lucrezia. She was a really cool, bubbly and very polite teenager that was a joy to be around. She spent most of the days at school but would get home around 5 or 6 each evening. We did exactly the same things as we would if Lucrezia hadn’t been with us and we included her completely in our life.

Hosting or staying with a host is a great experience for both host and student

We had a little routine and did pretty much the same every evening – cooked dinner together, played with the baby, went for a walk to the park, went food shopping or Lucrezia talked to her family on Skype. Most evenings though we would end up sitting in our living room after dinner, just talking and learning about one another and our families. We believe it is important to make your guest feel welcome and part of your family for both parties to have an enjoyable experience. We were truly sorry to say good bye to her at the end of the 2 weeks.

Hosting foreign students can make lasting friends

Naturally, we’ve stayed in touch through Skype and email and Lucrezia has invited us to stay with her family in Milan. We’ve also talked about her coming to visit us again as she would like to find work experience for a month in Cardiff next summer.

Living with a person from a different culture who isn’t necessarily fluent in English might seem scary to some people. It didn’t to us. Perhaps we were advantaged to some degree as we both love travelling and meeting people from different cultures and teaching English to foreign students is my job. Despite that fact, I’d encourage people to give it a go. Of course, you must put a bit effort into it, but ultimately, it is a rewarding experience and you might, like us, make lasting friends.
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About Peartree Languages

Peartree Languages is a language school located in Cardiff.


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