The Benefits of a Home-Stay Placement
Home-stay options usually provide home cooked, authentic delicacies.
Moving to another country for a large chunk of the year can be quite daunting, especially if you plan on leaving your friends and family in your home country which is probably why in 2014 28% of TEFL students opted for a home-stay placement during their time in the field. Staying with a host family will allow you to truly live like a local, experiencing the day to day life of your new community.
Learning a new language, having the emergency support and also having any questions you may have answered truthfully by a host family may also help with homesickness and make you feel more at ease in your adopted country.
When you first move to your chosen country, there will obviously be a slight language barrier, especially if your host family do not know much English. However, many programs now offer language lessons when you teach TEFL, allowing you to get along in your new location. By staying with a host family, you will be able to practice your new language skills and pick up slang and other informal ways of communicating which will be great to bring into the classroom to increase the engagement of your students.
Living with a family who do not speak English as their first language will also help you practice your teaching skills before heading into the classroom. By running your lesson plans through your host family first, you will be teaching them basic English skills to help them communicate with you, and also making sure that your lesson does not contain any content that may seem completely fine in your home country, but may hold different connotations in your chosen country.
Discover the Area
By attending local events, festivals and parties that your host family attend, you will get to know your new neighbours and genuinely live like a local. If you end up living with a host family who happen to know a lot of people, you could find yourself becoming immersed in friendly events like local community parties, huge feasts and even special events like birthday parties and wedding receptions if you’re lucky!
Finding out when any festivals happen in your local community is a great idea whether you live with a host family or not. Getting to know the locals may require a lot more effort if you do not have the links, but having a local support network in place in case anything goes wrong or you have any queries is ideal. Knowing who to go to in case of emergency or even just to show you the local sites will help you become more comfortable in your surroundings and finding your feet in your new home town.
You will get a lot of support from us and your school, however, emergencies do happen, even if this is just knowing where the closest public toilet is! Living in a community with a group of people who know their way around your new home town will help you get through life’s little emergencies, or even larger emergencies that are always a risk.
From a young age, children in higher-risk areas are taught what to do in case of emergency, and if this is not taught during your orientation, your host family can guide you through their own plan of action in case something drastic happens.
Living in another country can be incredibly different to living in your home country, where you know where everything is at all times. The little emergencies could even be as small as knowing where to buy plasters, or when to catch the bus. The locals, especially your host family, will be aware that you will not know where to find everything and will become your guides during your time in your chosen country.
By becoming your personal mentors will be a big step for your host family, especially if they have never hosted a TEFL teacher before. While you may have a lot of questions about your new surroundings, they may also have a lot of questions about you, your background and your culture. By exchanging information about culture, the way you live and your heritage will help you bond with your host family and also teach them more about the person they will now have sharing their personal space.
Having a lot of questions is natural for anyone in a new environment, and making sure you ask everything is essential. Living alone or with another TEFL teacher may feel great, but living with a host family will provide you with a safety net and close support that you may not be able to get through a phone call or email.
Considering a Home Stay
Not all placements offer a home stay option, and others provide only a home stay option for your included accommodation. We think is it a great opportunity to learn more about the surroundings you will be spending many weeks in, while bonding with new people and genuinely getting to live like a local.
Homesickness may be quelled by living in a family-orientated environment, especially if you are close to your family back at home. Having that security there for when you miss home or need crucial answers is almost essential for TEFL beginners and a comforting luxury for those who have taught abroad before.
Our Teach & Learn Argentina placements allow you to stay with an Argentinean family, meaning you can learn Argentine Spanish and have people to take you to local festivals and events, and also to introduce you to their neighbourhood.
Previous post: Why Teach In Argentina?
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