FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why female tutors?
Why not? No, but seriously, we believe that poverty will be eradicated through the hands of women. It is said for every dollar that is put in the hands of a woman in a developing country, that it goes four times further than a man because men will spend it on their vices where women will spend it on their children, family and community. So, by funneling a fair wage through our female tutors, combined with our 3 other focuses of Impact, we will have a generational and community wide impact!
Do I get to pick my tutor?
This is a common question, and the answer is nope. All of our tutors go through a rigorous interview process to make sure that they are amazing, each and every one of them. Learn more about that here, Tutor Selection. And each of them deserves an opportunity to have an amazing cue of students. So we spread out the love, but know you will be assigned to them thoughtfully.
We also fairly distribute the teaching opportunities to eliminate competition and jealousy within our teaching communities. This provides for a collaborative environment, where success is judged on the whole, not the individual, promoting sharing and growth among our tutors.
What if I don't like my tutor?
We understand that not all personalities match, especially in a teaching environment, so we want to make sure we can find a tutor that matches you well. So if you feel that the connection between you and your tutor is just not there, you may request to be changed at any point. All we ask is that you be forthcoming with the details as to why. It will help us to understand a little better what you are looking for in a tutor, and also helps us to challenge and stretch our tutors to be the best they can be. We are always learning over here, as are our tutors, so you will be doing us a great service with your input!
Where will my language liaison be based?
All of our tutors are based in developing countries with our first wave working from Guatemala, since our focus is on Spanish. However, our goal is to change the lives of women and communities all over the world. So once we feel like we have grown to a healthy place in Guatemala and in Spanish, we will start exploring opportunities in other parts of the developing world!
Will the timezones affect the availability of my language liaison?
TongueTry puts you in control and so our Language Liaisons are flexible to the needs and availability of you, our students (within reason of course). Guatemala is based in the Central time zone (CST) which makes it perfect for serving students across the breadth of the North America. If there is a particular time you are looking for and it’s not offered, feel free to contact us and let us know, we will do our best to accommodate.
How much teaching experience will my language liaison have?
All of our tutors currently have well over a decade experience teaching foreigners in Spanish Immersion schools in Antigua. They're students have ranged from Americans, Europeans, Asia, etc. The majority have a great handle on English, however, we aim for an immersive experience, so we recommend utilizing Spanish for the majority of the lesson. As we expand we will be looking for cities where Native Speaking Immersion programs are offered, and the tutor pool is deep. For example, in Antigua, Guatemala, they have over 1000 tutors, most of which have 5+ years of experience. But again, experience is not our only criteria. To find out more, please click here.
Do you have one general curriculum?
Yes and no. We have created an overall curriculum to take anyone from "hola' to "competencia avanzada" (hello to advanced proficiency), if that is their goal. However, we also have created variations of that curriculum that focus on specific needs depending on your objectives. On day one we have you go through an assessment with your tutor to discover your level of proficiency and your goals . Once we identify that, then we will apply that knowledge to the curriculum and customize your experience. You want to be fluent, we have a curriculum built to take you from A to Z of proficiency. You looking to visit Cabo with the family, we can help you learn the essentials and quick. Unlike other sites where the tutor is assumed to know how to get you there, we empower and equip our tutors with every tool to make sure we get you to your goals as efficiently and joyfully as possible.
Will a lesson plan and homework be set?
In general no, however it will depend on your goals and objectives. If you are looking to place out of Spanish 1 and 2 for school credit, there will need to be some written exercises we will give you. The tutor will follow up with you about it and address the answers and any questions you may have. But there are no grades here ... our goal is for you to have fun, even if it's for school. So we utilize the latest language acquisition methods to ensure you learn in the most engaging way possible. To learn more about our methodology with regards to our curriculums, click here.
Why do you use proficiency targets instead of Spanish 1, 2, 3, etc?
The following note on this issue is from our lead Curriculum Guru Ricky. "As a veteran foreign language teacher, a publishing representative with several publishers and with a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, the one thing about Spanish 1, 2, 3, etc. that is consistent is that there is no consistency.
Spanish 1 in one school district or for one publisher has different meanings than for another school district or publisher. So we don't focus on numeric levels. Instead, TongueTry focuses on proficiency levels as outlined by ACTFL to truly gauge proficiency in using the language. To find out more about that, click here."
Will the focus be on reading, writing, speaking, or listening?
The focus of the TongueTry curriculum is to lead students to proficiency in speaking and listening. Although there are opportunities for reading and writing within the curriculum, those opportunities are not central to the curriculum. They are offered as support opportunities on the path to proficiency.
How do I know the equivalent language levels from the proficiency levels?
Our curriculum focuses on proficiency levels rather than textbook levels, which may be different depending on location or curriculum. But, for those who need to know how the proficiency levels correlate, here is a suggested correlation:
Spanish 1 = Novice Mid – Novice High
Spanish 2 = Novice High – Intermediate Low
Spanish 3 = Intermediate Low – Intermediate Mid
Spanish 4 = Intermediate Mid – Intermediate High
I need to cancel or reschedule a session, what should I do?
We understand that your schedule is busy and things come up. To change or reschedule your session, look in your confirmation email of your session. There you will find a link to cancel or reschedule your session. Right now we have a 12 hour window for all rescheduling and cancellations which means that you need to cancel or reschedule 12 hours in advance. You also cannot schedule less than 12 hours in advance for the benefit of our tutors. Most have children and have to we try to be sensitive to their schedules and give them fair warning when to be available for our students. If you have questions about this policy, please use our Contact Us form and we will be sure to follow up with you!
Membership or appointment ISSUES
i can't reschedule/cancel my appointment.
This is probably because you are trying to reschedule it during our within 12 hours of the appointment. We have a cancellation/reschedule policy that you may not do either within 12 hours of the appointment. On that note, we also don't allow you to schedule new appointments within that 12 hour window either, so you always have a window to cancel/reschedule. You will be charged for this appointment, but this also means that your tutor will get paid for the appointment! For the cost of NYC coffee, the impact is on her life is huge. If you have any questions about this ... hit us up at firstname.lastname@example.org or on our contact us page.
i missed my appointment and was charged for it
Yep ... that's right. Much like an in person tutor, if you do not cancel your appointment or reschedule within the 12 hour window, you pay for it. Remember there are real people on the other end of these appointments who rely on this for their living and for their families.
Is there a minimum contract/membership?
Nope. If you signed up for an individual class, you're only obligated for that one class. When you sign up for a membership, it is month to month and will be billed on the beginning of each cycle. A cycle begins on the day you purchase the membership, and ends the day before on the following month. For example, if you signed up for a membership on Jan 2nd, your cycle will end at the end of Feb 1st. The new cycle will begin on Feb 2nd. If you decide to cancel anytime within a month cycle, you will not be charged for the next cycle, but will have access until the end of the cycle. We do not do partial refunds on the membership, but will cancel as long as you cancel a minimum of 48 hours before the next cycle starts.
What if I have left over money in my Membership, does it disappear?
Great question. Yes and no. If you end your membership cycle with any money left, it's reset at the beginning of the next month. There is no rollover. However, if you have money left in your cycle, but not enough for a session, you may sign up for an additional session and will only be charged the difference between the session and your balance. For example, if you have a balance of $5.00 and you want to sign up for a 25-Minute class, then you'd only pay the balance of $2.50.
What if I have left over money on a gift card, but not enough for a session, does it disappear?
No. When you sign up for the next session, you only have to pay the balance between the remaining balance and the cost of the session.
How do I cancel my account?
If you wish to cancel, just let us know through the contact us page at least 48 hours before the beginning of your next cycle. We will make sure to take you out of the system at the end of your current cycle, so you can finish up all your sessions for that month. Note, there are no pro-rations or refunds during your current cycle unless it is after your very first session.
Can I pause my Membership?
We highly discourage this because consistency is the key to your success. However, if you know you are taking a back packing trip for a month through the Amazon with no wifi, we don’t want you to have to pay for that time. However, you can only pause after the current billing cycle is complete. For example, if you started your subscription on the 6th of the month, but you are leaving for your adventure on the 1st, the pause will not go into effect until the 6th. You need to contact us a minimum of 48 hours before you want to pause your membership.
Can I change my billing cycle payment date?
Yes you may. You just need to contact us about the date you’d like to change it to. The effect will happen after the current cycle and will require a partial payment for the additional options, but that will be applied to your account. For example, you signed up on the January 10th, but you pay all your bills on the 1st and would prefer that to be the new cycle date. We would charge you an additional prorated amount for the 10th through the 30th, based on a 30 day cycle (additional $66.67). We would then add this to your account with prorated bonus (+$83.33). Now you would not be charged on the 10th of February, but your next charge would be on March 1st and on the 1st of each month after that.
What is your refund policy?
For individual lessons, as long as you cancel within 12 hours of your session, you will receive either a full refund to your card on file, or the amount will be returned to your membership account. If you have a membership, you cannot cancel this current cycle subscription, however, in the email you receive monthly with the "Product Order" of your subscription, there is a link at the top to change/cancel subscription.
Does the website work on any browser?
Yep. And better than that, you can use it on any device because it's web responsive.
Do you have an App?
Not at this point, there's no need. We utilize Skype, which has an amazing desktop, tablet and smart phone app. On it you will be able to follow your chat conversation over time as well as access any of the documents or files they send to you.
What do you suggest I bring to the session?
Each student must determine for himself or herself what works best, but we will make a few suggestions.
- Make sure you are connected to adequate high speed internet.
- Locate yourself where there will be minimal distractions and where you feel free to communicate without feeling self-conscious. The key to immersion is not being afraid to sound silly or make mistakes.
- Put your cell phone on Do Not Disturb and let friends, family, and work know that you will not be accessible during your session.
- Buy a notebook specifically for your sessions and be prepared to take lots of notes.
- Your attitude will determine your aptitude, so make sure to mentally prepare yourself to focus, have a good time, and enjoy your individualized lesson. Remember to give your self kudos, this is an investment in your future, you should be proud of yourself.
Who can I contact with technical problems?
We appreciate your patience as we are still working out a few of the bugs. Please reach out to us on the Contact Us page and be specific with your issues. We may ask for accompanying information, so whatever supporting information you might have, please keep it and we will do our best to resolve it.