Young Learner Host Tutor Manual

Home Tuition immersion programmes for under-18s are an increasingly popular part of InTuition’s portfolio of courses.

While hosting and teaching under-18s brings its own set of challenges (as any parent of teenagers would no doubt agree!), it can also be an incredibly fun and fulfilling experience for students and host tutors alike.

This manual is provided in addition to the Host Tutor Manual in order to provide host tutors who accommodate and teach under-18s with additional guidance and support regarding our academic, hosting and safeguarding requirements. If you have any additional questions which are not answered within the manual, please do not hesitate to contact us directly – we are always here to help.

Hosting Young Learners

Meeting your Students

All Young Learner students must take a transfer arranged by InTuition upon arrival in their country of study (unless accompanied by an adult family member or group leader). They may not use public transport. If you undertake the Meet and Greet service yourself, you will be provided with the student’s mobile phone number and flight / train details in order to ensure that there are no issues in meeting them at the airport. Should a student fail to arrive at a pre-arranged rendezvous, this is considered an emergency situation (see below for the procedure in such situations). All vehicles used during an excursion or from / to an airport must comply with the appropriate transport regulations.

If a student is arriving at your home by taxi, you must ensure that you are at home to meet them. If you cannot be at home, for whatever reason, you must let us know in advance who will be there instead. This person must be an adult.

If you are requested to arrange a taxi transfer, it must be with a company that we have previously contacted and approved of as meeting our safeguarding standards. We will advise you of this at the time of making the taxi reservation. Generally, taxi reservations are made centrally by our placement team.

For most of our under-18s, it is not their first time travelling abroad for language studies, but it is usually the first time they have taken a course ‘at the teacher’s home’. Please bear in mind that they are likely to be quite shy and that you must take additional steps to make them feel at ease in your home. The New Student Arrival Checklist should be followed as for an adult student, with the additional Young Learner elements covered.

Part of Your Family

Your student is going to be a part of your family while they are with you. Please try to:

  • Engage with them
  • Help them to enjoy their learning and achievements
  • Promote positive attitudes and work habits – handle distractions, negotiate crises of confidence, praise for effort and persistence.
  • Encourage them to seek help when needed
  • Actively include them in daily life
  • Help them to understand your local culture and customs

Health Issues

Students are asked to disclose any medical conditions or medication they are taking during the course-booking process. If your student has any special medical requirements that we are aware of, we will discuss these with you during the placement process to ensure that the best possible support can be provided. Should an under-18 inform you of any medical conditions during their stay which were not discussed during the placement process, please let us know as soon as possible.

Please also watch out for issues that might arise from the following:

  • Eating porrly
  • Alcohol / smoking / drugs
  • Stress
  • Isolation
  • Illness / general welfare

If any issues arise, let us know as soon as possible so that we can deal with them together.

Unsupervised Free Time and Curfews

 We operate a two-stage consent system as regards students being allowed unsupervised free time outside your home.

Parents are asked to consent to allowing their child unsupervised free time in principle – this is indicated on the student’s Parental Consent Form. If the parents do not consent to this, the student should not be permitted any unsupervised free time outside your home.

If parents consent to allowing their child unsupervised free time, it is up to you as Host Tutor to determine the parameters and curfew limits for any unsupervised periods outside your home. Naturally, this will vary, depending on your location and own house rules. However, we recommend the following guidelines for curfew times:

  • 16-17 year olds: 22:00
  • 14-15 year olds: 21:00

If a student has not returned to your house by the agreed curfew time, this constitutes an emergency situation.

It may be relevant to produce a risk assessment which covers unsupervised free time. Please ask us about this if you are unsure.

Supervision

Under-16s should not be left unsupervised for long periods or permitted a key for your house. 16 and 17 year olds may have a little more freedom, but they should still keep you informed about what they are doing and where they are.

Students should not be left alone – at home or outside your home – with any adult who has not been approved by us. If you have regular visitors to your home, who may find themselves alone with an under-18, please let us know. If you are having work done on your home, ensure that students are not left alone with builders or contractors.

Accommodation

Students aged 14+ must not be accommodated in child-sized bunk beds. If you can offer only bunk bed accommodation for 2:1 bookings, please ensure that this is clearly noted in the Student Room section of your Profile (this can be accessed via the Portal).

Support

Younger students will need extra support, especially with:

  • Homesickness
  • Adjusting to a new culture
  • Adjusting to a new learning style
  • Personal safety
  • Friends and relationships

We are available with guidance on how to deal with any such circumstances that you do not feel able to manage independently.

Welfare and Safeguarding 

Remember this basic principle: treat your students as you would your own children.

If you have any concerns relating to safeguarding, or the wellbeing of any under-18 in your care, our Designated Safeguarding Lead is Alexa Randell, the DOS. She can be contacted confidentially on +44 7821 684 578 or at dsl@intuitionlang.com at any time – please note that these contacts are to be used only for safeguarding matters. If she is unavailable, another designated member of staff will be available.

Our Practical Safeguarding Guidance provides concise and comprehensive support on how to ensure the safety and security of both your students and yourself.

Safeguarding Policy

It is vital that all host tutors taking on bookings from under-18s are familiar with our Safeguarding Policy and Procedure. 

Safeguarding Course

All host tutors taking on bookings from under-18s must complete our online Basic Safeguarding Awareness course as part of their induction (unless a similar course has been completed recently).

DBS / Garda / PVG / Police Good Conduct

All Young Learner host tutors must undergo relevant police / good conduct checks for their jurisdiction of residence. Please see the Safer Recruitment section of our Recruitment Policy for full details on what is required. If you have any questions, please contact the DOS (EFL teachers) or MFL Tutor Manager (MFL teachers).

Parental Consent Form

Parental consent is sought and gained as part of the process in arranging a Young Learner course. This consent is indicated on the Parental Consent Form, a copy of which will be sent to you as part of the booking process.

Photos and Videos

Permission should always be sought from the student before any pictures or videos are taken. Students’ parents must also give active consent to their child’s image being recorded, which will be indicated on the Parental Consent Form in each case. The posting of images or videos of students to host tutors’ personal social media is not permitted. Consent can be withdrawn at any time: if a student asks you to delete any photos or videos of them you must do so, regardless of whether they previously expressed consent.

E-Safety

All host tutors hosting under-18s are required to follow the guidance (especially the ‘practical steps’ section) outlined in our E-Safety Information and Guidance.

Alcohol and Tobacco

  •  It is illegal for anyone under the age of 18 to buy alcohol or tobacco in the UK, Ireland and Malta.

We ask that you do not provide any under-18s with alcohol, either in your home or with meals in pubs or restaurants, during their stay with you.

If students aged 16+ wish to smoke, and this is not in contravention of your house rules, you may permit them to do so.

Medical Treatment

Students’ parents / guardians are asked to consent to host tutors acting in the student’s best interest in the case of medical emergencies, if the parents / guardians cannot be contacted for whatever reason. This is outlined on the Parental Consent form.

If a student takes regular medication for any condition, this will be outlined to you during the placement process. 

Standard medical treatment guidance as outline in the Host Tutor Manual should be followed in case of minor sickness or injury, subject to parental consent.

Student Card

Each Young Learner is provided with a personalised digital student card to save on their phone wallet.

Risks

Because excursions take place away from your home, special consideration must be given to the safety and security of each student. If you are aware of any particular risks close to your home (for example, cliffs, beaches or busy roads) ensure that students are briefed on arrival.

  • Assess whether any additional supervision is required for the proposed venue and / or proposed activities.
  • During excursions, provide appropriate supervision at all times.
  • Carry a small first aid kit and a mobile phone in case of need.
  • Spend time explaining excursion arrangements to the child. If a child has special medical requirements (e.g. asthma or diabetes) ensure that all medication is brought with them.
  • In-water activities should take place only when the student is a reasonably good swimmer and it is best to use public baths where lifeguards are on duty.
  • If cycling, avoid main roads as students may not be familiar with British road rules. Ensure that students are given a cycling helmet.
  • Horse riding should only be offered through an established riding school with the appropriate public liability insurance.
  • As for adult excursions, Activity Risk Assessments must be undertaken before any excursion is carried out.

Teaching Young Learners

It is our job to make sure that Young Learners applicants are suitable, motivated and able to cope with the intensity of one-to-one tuition.

It is important to treat each under-18 as an individual – just as you would an adult. There is, it goes without saying, a pronounced difference in requirements between a 10 year old and a 17 year old, not least in terms of attention span and capacity for concentration. Always structure your lessons taking the individual student’s capabilities into account. Be prepared to take more study breaks with younger students.

We do not recommend any fundamental changes to your teaching environment when hosting under-18s. The same basic principles – having a dedicated area, free from distractions, nicely decorated and allowing ease of access and exit – apply equally.

Course Types

All under-18s take either a General Language, Exam Preparation or Academic Language programme. Further details about these course types are noted in the Host Tutor Manual.

We divide under-18s into two different age groups: 14-17 and 10-13. 14-17 year olds may choose the number of lessons taught per week (between 15 and 30), the same as adult students. 10-13 year olds are required to study 25 hours per week, which is structured to contain 15 hours’ formal lessons and 10 hours of extra activity-based learning.

We also offer several special courses for under-18s:

  • J2J

J2J is our ‘matching’ programme which is run over four weeks (three cohorts, each studying for two weeks) in June and July each year. We select two Young Learners from different countries and pair them on the basis of sex, age, English level and interests. The two students then study a 2:1 course (15 hours per week) with a single host tutor. The idea, of course, is that they will still be required to speak English all the time, but they will also have the benefit of a partner to share the social experience with. Many J2J students return to study for several consecutive years, which is a testament to its popularity and effectiveness.

  • Sport and Culture Programme

The Young Learner Sport and Culture programme is aimed at students who are less inclined towards formal lessons and more towards activities and excursions. Students take 10 hours of formal lessons per week, with three additional afternoon activities – a specific activity (sport or cultural) will be requested. In effect, formal lesson time is exchanged for additional activity time.

Teaching Materials

We provide materials specifically designed for teaching under-18s in our online resource library, accessible through the Dropbox. Many of the resources available through One Stop English are also very suitable for Young Learners. As for adult courses, Exam Preparation courses include specialised study materials which we will post to you during the confirmation process. For Academic English programmes, students are instructed to bring their own materials with them, as they usually have very specific individual requirements.

Excursions with Young Learners

All Young Learners are entitled to three afternoon activities per week, as well as a full-day excursion each weekend on courses lasting longer than one week. We encourage you to do the first excursion on the first Monday afternoon of a course.

The Young Learner Supplement covers the cost of all “reasonable” entrance fees, e.g. cinema, swimming pools, etc. A reasonable budget for all excursions in a week is £25 / €30. This could be split between several excursions, or ‘saved up’ for larger excursion – it is up to you and your student. If an excursion is planned that involves a substantial admission cost (official sightseeing tours, theme parks or mainline train fares), please explain the fees involved to the student in advance and that the student must pay for themselves and their teacher. This avoids any misunderstanding.

We recommend that under-18s bring a minimum of £110/€130 per week pocket money to spend (more if they want to do a lot of shopping). It is impossible to give detailed spending guidelines without being too prescriptive: a successful course depends on a certain amount of flexibility on the part of both students and hosts.

A formal Needs Analysis and objective-setting process can sometimes be difficult with younger students, but it is still good to discuss the week’s programme in detail with your students at the beginning of the course to plan and decide on visits.

If, for any reason, a student wishes to spend more money than they have brought with them, make sure both you and they make it clear to parents / guardians why extra costs are being incurred and obtain their prior approval. It is essential to clarify this before going ahead with plans, as we will not be able to reimburse you for any deficit.

Example Social Programme

 

AM PM
Monday  Assessment – Tuition - Lunch Tour of local area
Tuesday Tuition – Lunch Free time
Wednesday Tuition – Lunch Museums / Exhibitions / Castle / Cinema
Thursday  Tuition – Lunch Sport, e.g. tennis, badminton, swimming, cycling, bowling
Friday  Tuition – Lunch Free time
Saturday / Sunday  One full day activity organized by the host tutor

An Excursion Step-by Step

  • Identify possible places of interest for your student. Please collate a folder of leaflets of local places of interest to leave in their room upon arrival, showing the activity and the cost.

  • Discuss with your student the types of language activities that will be interesting and beneficial for the student to use during the excursion.

  • Structure the excursion by:

    1. Having the student carry out internet research on the location.

    2. Pre-teaching relevant vocabulary or writing, rehearsing and recording relevant model dialogue that the student may need. In addition to correcting the grammar, you can focus on such speech features as intonation and the appropriateness of questions and responses.

    3. During the excursion, create opportunities for student interaction with English speakers and the environment. Encourage the student to note down new vocabulary.

    4. Follow-up the excursion with lesson activities, including (for example) presentations about the excursion, editing and presenting a video, writing a report, sending thank you emails, discussing the experience and any cultural issues or differences encountered.

  • Ensure that a risk assessment is carried out and that the student is briefed on any relevant precautions to take. See the Host Tutor Manual for more information on risk assessments.

Suggestions for student activities on excursions

While everyone has their own ideas, here are three suggestions provided by our network of host tutors:

  • Your student becomes a journalist, taking photographs / videos, interviewing and writing a follow-up article.

  • Your student makes enquiries around town comparing accommodation prices, restaurants, etc, and then writes a report with comparisons and recommendations.

  • Your student becomes your guide. Having researched the city / museum / art gallery on the internet, your student acts as your guide during the excursion.

After an excursion, or at the end of a course, you can ask your student to give a short, informal talk on the excursion, including the preparation, points of interest and whether or not they felt they had benefited from the experience.

  • Assist the student to write a loosely constructed script.
  •  Video or record your student as they give the talk (see above regarding gaining permission for this). In order for them to achieve a natural, informal delivery, you may need to do this more than once.

The student thus produces a substantial piece of work as the conclusion to an activity. They can take the video / recording with them when they leave.

  

If a student goes missing

If an under-18 goes missing (either failing to return home by an agreed time, or during an excursion or activity), this is considered an emergency situation. Our policy is to inform the police directly. It is important that we have the following information on hand, as it will be requested by the police at the outset:

  • Student Name
  • Age
  • Nationality and first language
  • How you have attempted to contact the student (including how many times, and when)
  • Physical description, including any distinguishing features and a description of what they had been wearing when they were last seen
  • Last known time seen
  • Any particular concerns

The police are likely to visit you at home after we have informed them that your student is missing.

Please see the separate Emergency Procedures for full information on what to do.