When we want to learn another language, we need to be exposed to it. I think that classes are not enough to learn it. The environment of the classroom is different from real life. Thus, the perfect combination for learning another language consists of classes plus practice outside of school. For instance, living with a homestay family is the best way to improve your English skills in addition to classes.
Living with a family gives you the opportunities to practice English in many ways, such as listening, conversation, argument, etc. With the family, you also are able to learn about American culture, to know about Boston, to meet other people, etc.
In my case, I have really enjoyed the time with my homestay family. They are a young couple with an adorable son. She is chef; as a result, we always have delicious plates for dinner both at home and at her café.
She is the owner of a café in the same neighborhood where we live. If you want to eat her fabulous food, you must go to Dot 2 Dot at 1739 Dorchester Avenue. Here you can eat the best breakfast, brunch, or dinner (dinner is only served on Thursdays and Fridays) that you have ever eaten in your whole life. Before leaving Boston you need to eat at this place.
They made me feel part of the family – for example, inviting to activities, introducing me to their friends and neighbors, etc. They really like to have students in their home; they have the opportunity to speak with them and, at the same time, they enjoy being part of the student’s process of learning a second language. In general, both parts – the students and the family – get different experiences together. As the saying does, “Everyday we learn something new.”
Contribution from Astrid (Puerto Rico) from Aayesha’s Advanced Reading & Writing class