More detailed information
Who can be a Conversation Host?
Anyone who is a native speaker of English, living in Spain, with some spare time and a spare bedroom can be a host. It’s that simple. We accept applications to be hosts from men and women from 22 to over 80! If you are friendly, communicative and think you can help the students feel at ease when they are out of their comfort zone, then hosting is definitely for you.
For the residential programmes you must have a spare room, be able to provide decent cooked food (even if that means taking your student out to eat every day).
You must have a spare room, be able to provide decent cooked food (even if that means taking your student out to eat every day), and organized and proactive enough to plan your sessions within our suggested programme of activities.
One to One World Conversation Hosts – some profiles:
- a retired English couple recently moved to inland Andalucía: he is an architect, she is a designer
- an English woman who has spent more than 30 years living in a cottage not far from Cádiz’s Costa de la Luz: she is a gardener and translator
- an English couple in their 50s living in their self-built eco home in rural Cádiz: both former English teachers, he’s now a plumber and she’s a writer
- a retired couple, both former teachers, living in the mountains of Andalucía
Our English Programme Director can talk you through the process of figuring out whether you fit the bill, how much time and space you have available and how you might benefit.
What does this experience offer me as host?
As a host you will enjoy a very rewarding experience. You will gain:
- A unique insight into the people of Spain without having to speak much Spanish. Our Conversation Hosts get to know the students on a level that would otherwise be impossible without learning the language well.
- The chance to get to know diverse individuals from all walks of life and to form long-lasting friendships.
- The chance to enjoy full active days without having to plan too much yourself. You can simply go with the suggestions in our programme and use our materials!
- The chance to earn some supplementary income to help you pay your bills or cover some extra treats.
- And, above all, the satisfaction of knowing that you’ve had a positive impact on the life of another person.
Who are the students in the OnetoOneWorld Programme?
The participants come from all around Spain, and most of them are between 30 and 50 years old. Whether they are sent by their employer, or pay out of their own pocket, they see the programme as an opportunity for career and personal development, as well as a chance to make friends with native speakers.
Here are some of our students:
- 35 year old chemist, from Cádiz
- 27 year old civil engineer, from Conil
- 38 year old translator, from Colombia
- 54 year old farmer who likes travelling, from Seville
- 24 year old student, from Algeciras
- 44 year old accountant for bank, from Córdoba
- 52 year old sales manager from Barcelona
What level of English will the student have?
The One to One World programme is designed for students with at least a lower intermediate level in English, though you may find yourself hosting learners with a much higher level. However they will all typically lack confidence in spoken English and it is your job to help them overcome their inner barriers providing authentic situations in which to communicate.
Do I need teaching experience?
Experience in education is definitely an advantage, but it is more important that you are open and friendly and ready to chat.
Often classroom study is about learning grammar and theory, but in real life we want to convey our opinions and ideas. Having real conversations with native English speakers allows our students to put theory into practice and improve their level of communication. Many Spanish language learners have very good knowledge of English grammar, but they are still unable to speak English. Your job is to speak English with them, as simple as that!
What do I have to do?
In order to provide our students with full exposure to English, your work will consist of mainly of:
- Talking, listening, listening and talking!!!
- Exposing the students to the natural, individual and authentic styles of spoken English.
- Helping train their ears to detect and distinguish different sounds.
- Offering a supportive environment where they can gain confidence when speaking English.
You must of course be dedicated to the program, and be prepared to abide by the following rules:
- Speak only English!
- Be patient and supportive when correcting student’s mistakes
- Be punctual
Why is speaking only English important?
Our clients want to learn English in the most engaging way. Since you are not using formal classroom techniques or grammar-based activities, you must be up for the challenge of creating conversation opportunities which motivate students by tapping into their likes, their loves and their hates. In the One to One World programme we are asking the students to forget about grammar and just talk!
I speak Spanish – Can I be a host?
We promise our students that the hosts won’t speak their language – it’s vital to the program. So, if you do speak Spanish, ask yourself: can I go through the week without uttering a word in Spanish? Only if you are certain that you will not be tempted to practice your own Spanish should you apply. So remember the number one rule of the program… English only please!
How much time will I need to commit?
Our programmes are very flexible and so you should be able to find one that suits the time you have available, and of course you will have full freedom to determine your own availability. However it is important to recognise that your student must be your main focus throughout the time you spend together.
Half day English: you will be hosting conversation with your student from 9.30am to 2pm.
One day English: runs from 9.30am to 8pm, including eating together at lunch time.
Weekend English: this programme runs for 2 days, but the exact timing is flexible. During the time you will be providing food and accommodation, as well as plenty of conversation.
One week Full Immersion: this programme runs for 7 days, but the actual timing of this period is very flexible. During the 7 days that the programme runs you will be providing food, accommodation and plenty of conversation.
In all cases your time will be spent conversing in one-to-one sessions with your student. Some of the time you will be at home, but you will also plan to spend time together out and about, doing the things you usually do: shopping, meeting friends, going for walks, etc. In the weekend and week-long programmes there will also be periods in which your student is busy watching a film in English, or listening to a podcast, and you can relax or do some chores. Student and host also have free time built into the timetable for the longer programmes.
We provide Conversation Hosts with a complete programme of suggested activities and materials which you can adapt to your own interests and circumstances.
How much preparation and planning will I need to do?
Our programme is designed to support both you and the learner, with no stress and with no hassle. You will help students improve their skills in listening, understanding and conversation, and you will gain an enriching personal and social experience. We will give you enough information about your student and his/her needs before the visit so that you have time to think about some relevant conversation topics, or find an article and/or podcast your student might find useful. We also have suggested materials and resources to help you prepare for the visit. However, remember that your main resource is yourself and your willingness to talk about your life and show an interest in your student’s. This real and authentic communication is the basis of the One to One World experience.
How long do my visitors stay for?
This depends on the programme you have agreed to offer your student: for half and one day programmes your student will not be staying in your home, although you will provide lunch on the one day programme. For the weekend programme your student will spend 2 nights with you, and for the one week programme your student will stay for 7 nights.
What type of accommodation am I expected to provide?
You need to have a separate room for every student you receive for the weekend and one week programmes. However this could be anything from the bedroom that belongs to a son/daughter who is away at school or university, to the guest room of your house or even separate and independent en suite guest accommodation. The important thing to stress is that students will know exactly what type of accommodation to expect before their arrival.
What about food?
As Conversation Host you are responsible for providing all meals, either cooking them in your home or arranging to eat out at your local bar or Venta. If it seems appropriate and your student is interested, you may of course arrange to cook together sometimes.
Remember that this is in part a cultural exchange, so you should just carry on with your normal eating times and cook with your usual ingredients, unless you have agreed to cover some special dietary requirement.
If you follow a special diet, for example if you are vegetarian, then it is a good idea to mention this on your application form so we can make students aware of it.
What about housekeeping tasks?
As your student is a paying guest the usual tasks associated with cleaning your house will continue to be your responsibility. However you will not be expected to service your student’s bedroom or en suite bathroom if there is one.
What about house rules?
It is important to inform your students about any house rules that may apply to your home. There is a section covering this on the application form.
How much and how do I get paid?
For each of our programmes you will receive the following:
- Half Day English – The student pays 71€ and you receive 60€
- One Day English – The student pays 130€ and you receive 110€
- Weekend English – The student pays 296€ and you receive 250€
- One Week Full Immersion English – The student pays 820€ and you receive 714€
One to One World collects payment from your student when they book their stay with you and transfers your share of it to you via direct deposit into your bank account. The money will appear in your account 24 hours after your student arrives.
It’s free to list with us as a Conversation Host, and we make money only when you make money. We charge an agency fee of 15% +VAT on the full amount the student pays, transferring the remaining amount to you.
We work hard to make sure that you don’t have to worry about the details.
Can I have more than one student at a time?
Each OnetoOneWorld student requires their own bedroom and a specified amount of time speaking English in a one-to-one context. So if you have another spare room and another native speaker of English to hand, then of course you can receive more than one student, often providing a livelier experience all round.
Please feel free to consult us about your circumstances so we can decide together what would work best for both you and the students we place with you.
We are a couple. Can we both be hosts?
If you are both native speakers of English then you can both be hosts, sharing responsibility for one student, or hosting 2 students and swapping around to create more stimulating conversation. But we ask that you both fill out an application form.
Can I sign up to take students two weeks in a row?
In general we do not think this is a good idea. While the programme is stimulating and fun, it is also tiring and we need to ensure that we provide our Spanish clients with rested Conversation Hosts, ready to receive their students and to talk the hind leg off a donkey. However if you are a veteran host and feel you would like to do this, please discuss with us.
What support does One to One World offer hosts?
We have a list of suggested activities, designed by our Programme Director, who is an experienced teacher of English, or by experienced Conversation Hosts who want to share ideas about what has worked for them. It’s our job to guide you through the suggested timetable and activities and help you work out how to make the best of your resources. And after every programme we will call to discuss how things went, and provide individual feedback when relevant.
How can the Programme Director help me?
It is the Programme Director’s job to make sure that everything runs smoothly and:
- Develop suggested activities for Conversation Hosts to use with students.
- Solve any problems that might arise and act as “point of contact” for the programme Conversation Hosts and students.
- Liaise with the Conversation Hosts and students to ensure effective communication at all times
- After every programme, provide individual feedback on both the Conversation Hosts’ and the Students’ experience and participation.
A typical day in the One to One World Programme?
We provide our Conversation Hosts with a suggested programme to follow, including an outline of daily activities. Although there is a lot of flexibility in the timing of the different sessions and hosts are completely free to use their own ideas and activities to encourage communication, students will be expecting to follow the programme to a certain extent – any big changes need to be negotiated in advance.
9:00. Breakfast and planning the day.
10:00 – 13:00 One-to-one sessions
In one-to-one sessions you will talk with your student about anything that interests you both. We suggest breaking this into three separate 45 minute sessions, changing location and topic of conversation, with a short break between each session. We offer a series of ideas and materials to help you generate interesting and natural conversation.
13:00 Telephone work
The last hour of the morning offers a change of pace for student and Conversation Host. Most professionals have to deal with situations (a personal problem, a work task, organizing holidays, etc.) on the telephone, and this requires practice.
Mealtimes are a great time for general background conversation…
15:00-17:00. Free Time
In the afternoon and evening we suggest a range of less intensive activities such as group discussions, with other people, shared games, watching a film or listening to a podcast that later lead to conversation, reading and writing tasks, presentations etc. You can also take your student out with you as you do the shopping or go for a walk, and this is the time to take advantage of your own network and go and meet a friend for coffee and a chat.
What programmes do you have available?
Our programme is very flexible. YOU say when you are free to receive students. YOU say how often you want to receive students.
We will match our students with Hosts who have suitable dates and accommodation free.
How far in advance can I apply?
You can apply as a Host at any point, and suggest available dates well in advance. It’s up to you.
Am I right for the programme?
If after reading through all the information we provide here you think that you have the right character, experience and circumstances to work with us as a Conversation Host, then please fill in and send us your application form. We will use the information included in it to help us decide if you are eligible to join the programme as a Conversation Host, so it’s worth taking some time over your answers.
How do I apply to be a host?
You can download our form from our website. Then you should print it out and complete it. After that you can either send it to us by post, or scan it and send it as an attachment. Details of postal and email address are on the form.
Please make full use of all the sections, and bear in mind that if your applications are too brief, we will not get the feeling that you could chat your way through 7 days!
How long does the application process take?
We make every attempt to review applications as soon as possible. Ideally, we would like to get back to you within 2 weeks. However, processing time ranges from 1 day to 1 month, depending on current demand. Please excuse us of we exceed this time. It doesn’t mean we have forgotten about you, it means we have too many applications!
Wherever possible we like to visit our potential Conversation Hosts, so our next step will usually be to arrange a date and time to visit you.
What happens after I am accepted?
Once you are accepted as a potential Conversation Host for One to One World you will need to create a short personal profile. This is your time to shine: you have the opportunity to tell students what’s appealing, special, and attractive about you and your home. And make sure you provide us with some good photos. A picture speaks a thousand words: it’s a big help if prospective students can see their hosts and the home they will be staying in before their visit.
What about safety, security, and privacy?
The security of hosts and students is our number-one priority. We feature a wide range of safety and security measures to help you have a great experience.
We operate as intermediaries and all students are interviewed by our team on signing up for the programme and have their contact information verified. We are happy to communicate with you and share information about your prospective students, so you never have to say “yes” to a booking until you’re 100% confident.
You can select how much information you want us to share with prospective students to match your comfort level, and we will never give away your contact information until you have confirmed a booking.
You’re always in control of who stays at your place, and you can – of course – contact our Programme Director at anytime.
If you still have questions about whether being a Conversation Host is for you, we can help. Please let us have your phone number and tell us when would be a good time for us to call, and we will give you a ring to discuss any questions you have. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org