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Just imagine that these people are your family. If Darwin was right, they really are distant relatives anyway.
Homestay Programs: How to Get the Most Out of Your Homestay

Well, here you are, living in an American home. This is a wonderful opportunity to experience a foreign culture in its most authentic setting: the home and family. The real lives of Americans are lived with their families. But remember: although their behavior and their beliefs will be new to you, your hosts are ordinary people, with ordinary strengths and weaknesses. You could all have a wonderful time together, or a stressful and confusing time. Sometimes, your approach can help to make the difference. Try this:

  • Always ask your host family questions when you don't completely understand something, or if you aren't sure that you have understood.
  • Interact frequently with all members of the household.
  • Try something new whenever you can - food, customs, activities, holiday celebrations, etc.
  • Offer to share something from your own culture wth your host family - again, this could be food, customs, activities, holiday celebrations, etc.
  • If someone in your host family says something that shows ignorance or prejudice about your home country, try to tactfully educate them about the things that they have misunderstood. Be patient, but persistent, and you may be surprised at the results. Now you are a teacher, as well as a student!
  • Always respect each other's privacy.

Next: Dormitories - where students know students



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