Four tips on bonding with your International Student

Families that take on an international students can sometimes feel worried about how to create a rapport with their new housemate. Here are our top tips on helping the student, and yourself, settle in quickly.

Dust off the board games

Having fun is the easiest way for a family to bond with the international students they are hosting. Some card games are international and need no language. Charades requires no set up and can be hilarious. While a boardgame isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, even a game of Scrabble can get everyone talking and break the ice. We always recommend having plenty of family nights, with a wide selection of games or activities that help the bonding process while being fun for the whole family.

Share hobbies and interests

When hosting foreign students, it is important to find out what their hobbies are and encourage them to continue them while in the UK. At the same time, you can introduce them to your own interests and past times. Try and show students what Exeter has to offer with trips out and about to local hot spots. Also encourage them to try something they might not have before, whether that’s a trip to Exeter City FC, Exeter Chiefs of the RAM Museum. Even if those activities aren’t their cup of tea, they’ll experience what life is like in Exeter and it will certainly give you plenty to talk about.

Get together in the kitchen

Cooking is a brilliant way to bond when hosting international students. All cultures love food and sharing dishes will be a great experience for both the student and the host. Take your student shopping with you and ask them to help you cook some of their national dishes. Cooking together helps homesickness, teaches you a new dish and brings the family together around the dinner table.

Explore Exeter’s culture

Is your student into music? We would highly recommend a trip to the Phoenix in Exeter to see a live band. You would be surprised how internationally known UK music is, and experiencing that first hand could be a fantastic memory. In addition, big trips and excursions to some of the UK’s other great cities are not only fantastic for bonding, but they create lasting memories for your student which they can take back home and tell their family and friends about.