The goal of the ECVA program is to get the host family comfortable speaking in English. I bought some notebooks for my host brothers to keep a daily journal in English. I just asked them to write about what they did, someone they met, or something interesting that happened each day. Then they read it to me, and we discuss what happened. I correct their mistakes and make a list of vocabulary words that they need to work on. I divide the lists into different topics such as food, sports, computer and technology, furniture, shopping, etc.
For the most part, my host brothers just enjoy conversing in English with me. We often make lunch or dinner together. Cooking and eating together make easy conversation topics. Sometimes we watch TV together. The other night we watched a couple of episodes of The Simpsons in English. I let them use the Portuguese subtitles to help them understand. Watching movies in English is always a good way to teach people expressions in English.
Joao is more advanced than Paulo, so I sometimes call him on the phone just to make him practice speaking English. Paulo and I have more simple dialogues. We talk about what we did each day, and what we should make for dinner. We also talk about our families and their differences. Celise came over one day to help with our lesson (you can see her and Paulo in the photo).