Making the decision to send your child to study abroad depends on a lot of different factors. Among them is lodging, a matter that can be fundamental when the time comes to decide whether to send your child to one destination or another. In the end, the experience of living in a foreign country can be extremely influential in a child’s life, and it’s important to not only consider the academic factor, but also to think about the day-to-day way of life that your child will experience while studying abroad.
In Spain’s case, there are two great options to consider before sending your child to a school here. These options are available for students whose parents live in a foreign country or simply in a different region of Spain. These two options include student housing residences and host family lodging. Being far from home for an extended period of time can help improve your child’s confidence and increase their sense of independence, both of which are valuable qualities that can aid them once they’ve completed their studies and move on to university and/or professional life.
Life in student housing
Many private schools in Spain offer student housing options to accommodate foreign students. These residences have an added cost, in addition to the academic private enrolment fee, and the price normally includes rent, daily breakfast and dinner meal plans, laundry services and some weekend activities.
Bedrooms are normally individual or shared, depending on the student’s age, and the meal plan is often available for students between the ages of 8 and 18. Nevertheless, some schools only accept students entering secondary education.
Students learn about other cultures, languages and customs
One of the main advantages that this type of lodging has to offer is that it brings students together from all over the world, providing them with the opportunity to learn about other cultures, languages and customs. This widens their global perspective and is an excellent way to learn about other communities and their cultural norms, all the while making international friends for life. This intercultural opportunity is difficult to acquire any other way, which is why international experiences such as this one are so beneficial. Furthermore, the use of a second language, mainly English, is essential for students to interact with there housemates, and helps students to become bilingual by the end of their studies abroad.
Even so, one must also take into consideration the fact that may of these boarding facilities close during school holidays (For example: Christmas, Easter, summer holidays), and during this time students must return home or organize alternate lodging options.
Enjoy Spain with a host family
Another, less common lodging option for students offered in Spain is living with a host family, also known as Homestay. This option can vary between living with a whole family, a couple or a single host. The main advantage that the host family option offers is that your child’s Spanish language level will improve greatly and they will be immersed in Spanish culture during their stay. This opportunity allows students to fully embrace the Spanish way of life, its customs and traditions.
If you choose this lodging option, your child will be able to socialise with their host family and their friends on a regular basis, naturally improving their Spanish language abilities and strengthening their confidence in oral comprehension. Your child will also be able to explore the city or village where they live, with the help of their host family introducing them to all the best things to see and eat. They can even try their very first Spanish paella!
Living with a host family also helps students to feel more comfortable in a familial environment, where the general household rules of cohabitation are followed. Normally, children are provided with their own bedroom as a way to maintain a certain level of privacy. The fee for this type of lodging generally includes rent, public services and meals.
The most important thing to consider when choosing a lodging option is that your child’s individual personality and needs are always in mind, being one of the main objectives during their stay abrod. In regards to both of the options mentioned, you can count on the advice and support of Best Schools in Spain to help you with any questions you may have while making your decision.