Homestay Films

We usually have at least one film night during a homestay course. It can really take the pressure off having to entertain for the evening, especially good with children and teens. But it can be difficult finding films that will suit family and students. Read more

Homestay Games

When you’re hosting homestay students, it can be difficult to engage the whole household in conversation, especially if your students are lower levels, particularly in the first few days. I tend to find there’s some dead time after dinner, rainy days and long journeys when everyone is gathered together and conversation can be difficult.

Here are some games we’ve used. The title of each game links to instructions. The language areas specified give an indication of lexical and grammatical areas practiced in the games, but these aren’t classes – the aim should be communication and fun, rather than accuracy. Read more

Literature Circles

Over the summer I explored Academic Reading Circles (ARC) with pre-sessional students and was impressed with the depth of reading comprehension and quality of discussion they prompted. The students found them both valuable and enjoyable.

Read more

The Genius of Knock Knock Jokes

Knock knock! Knock knock! Knock knock!
Who’s there? Who’s there? Who’s there?
Cows go Little old lady Europe
Cows go, who? Little old lady who? Europe who?
No, silly, cows go MOO! I didn’t know you could yodel! You’re so childish!


Read more

Reading with Children

DSCN0542Everyone knows the benefits of reading to babies and toddlers, right? Health visitors hand out Bookstart packs in the UK almost as soon as your child is born, libraries run all-singing, all-dancing, glue & glitter sessions for families; Dolly Parton posts books monthly to children in the UK, the US, Canada and Australia. And the results from research is overwhelming: a child is never too young for a book. Read more