Learning from morning till night!
Geoff Hardy-Gould explains the benefits of living and learning with your English teacher. The traditional method of learning English in most speaking countries is to live with a host family and attend a language school every day. In the past few years, however, a new way of learning has been growing in popularity: living and learning in an English teacher’s home. Instead of going to school the student has individual lessons at home on what is known as a “homestay” course. This type of course is highly attractive as the student is exposed to English from morning to night. Learning takes place in formal lessons, but there are also additional opportunities for language practice at meal times, and while on social activities with the teacher in the afternoon and at weekends. The combination of one-to-one teaching and total immersion means that the students can improve quickly and gain a valuable insight into how English is used naturally. The course can also be a fascinating window onto life and culture in an English speaking country.
What makes a course in a teacher’s home special is the relationship that develops between the student and the teacher. They get to know each other well, which can make the course highly enjoyable as well as being helpful in the learning process. Language mistakes made outside lessons can be corrected immediately or discussed in more detail in a following lesson. The student has the teacher’s undivided attention and will have little or no contact with other students. As a result, they are unlikely to speak their mother tongue for the duration of the course, quite unlike the experience most students have at a language school.
In spite of their higher cost, homestay courses are attractive to wide range of clients, including business professionals, children and retired people. Clients also included people with disabilities, who find that their needs are more easily met in the home of environment. Normally, courses are for one or two students, although some teachers can accommodate larger groups or families.
Most homestay teachers are aged between 40 and 60. They will have a spacious house or apartment and be skilled at welcoming foreign guests into their home.
The Guardian Weekly
June 20, 1999.
I READING COMPREHENSION: (15points) A. Answer these questions: (6 pts)
B. Pick out from the text the expressions which show that: (3 pts)
- How are homestay courses different from the traditional method of learning?
- Why can homestay students learn quickly?
- Do homestay students have the opportunity to use their native language? Explain.
C. Are these statements true or false? Justify. (3 pts)
- Homestay teachers are mature professionals.
- Homestay courses are expensive.
- Homestay courses are not popular.
D. What do the underlined words in the text refer to? (1points)
- In a homestay course, the student lives with a host family and goes to a language school everyday.
- There are no formal lessons in homestay courses.
- A homestay course can be attended by more than one student.
1 – which (line 10): ... 2 – their (line 15): ...
E. Find in the text words or expressions which mean the same as: (2pts)
1 – Understanding (paragraph 2): ...
2 – Experienced (paragraph 5): ...
II - LANGUAGE: (10 points) A. Re-write these sentences beginning as suggested. (4pts)
1- They chose him representative of the school in the national competition.
2-I didn’t have enough money on me at that time. So, I didn’t buy all the necessary things.
3- The coach said: “We have been training hard to qualify for the next round”.
The coach revealed that they ...
4- Although the man is very old, he is keen on daily exercise.
In spite of ...
B. Put the verbs in brackets in the correct form. (1.5pts)
C. Fill in each blank with one word/expression from the list below: (1.5pts)
- Many American soldiers wish they (not/join) ... the war on Iraq in 2003.
- By the year 2010, Morocco (receive) ... ten million tourists.
- I started (get) ... ready for the exam early because there were so many lessons to revise.
consequently – whom – nevertheless – which – whose – therefore – although – thanks to
D. Fill in each blank with a suitable word. The first letter is given to you. (2pts)
- The Red Cross helped the people ... houses had been bombed in the war.
- She was very hardworking. ... she was dismissed from her job.
- The country could overcome the economic crisis ... the wise policy of its prime minister.
E. What would you say in the following situations? (1pt)
- Students have free a ... to universities in Morocco. They don’t have to pay to enter a university.
- Women should have an equal s... with men. Gender d... is an obstacle to development.
- The government is making a great effort to fight adult i... . They say all adults
Your friend damaged your CD player. Complete the exchange expressing complaint and apology.
Your friend: ...
III – WRITING: (15 points)
Do you remember your first day at school? Do you remember how it was?
Write a descriptive essay in which you portray your first experience at primary school and how you feel about it.