Relational Immersion

Language Is A Social Skill – Practice It With Other People

Developing your fluency requires meaningful interactions with other fluent speakers over time. Almost anyone who has developed fluency in another language will tell you that. It requires a lot of listening, a lot of patience, and a lot of repetition. It’s like learning to dance.

We call this Relational Immersion. Even if you live in a country where another language is spoken, you’re not going to develop proficiency in that language if you usually speak your home language. This may seem obvious, but there is broad misunderstanding about what exactly you should be doing when you’re “immersed” and exactly how much time it should take until you see results. This is part of the reason why people spend money on 2-week Spanish immersion classes in another country and develop very little fluency – And how people can be in the US for years and still have very minimal English skills.

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With Relational Immersion, People-Places-Things connects anyone with a highly fluent speaker of that language for practice. We call that person a Culture Guide, or Guía Cultural in Spanish. They are somewhere between a tutor and a tour guide.

We support both sides of the relationship – guiding the learner with motivation to keep going and the Guide with ideas and materials to keep the interactions fresh and engaging.

Improving Your Spanish With A Guía Cultural!

There are close to 150,000 Spanish speakers in Oregon, and yet it’s difficult to find a conversation partner! We connect you with friendly Spanish speakers to practice with. And you’re supporting the Spanish speaking community by offering them something for the rich culture they bring to our neighborhoods.

A Guía Cultural is somewhere between a tutor and a tour guide. The goal is to support your development where you’re at – from absolute beginner to highly proficient. We train them to tailor your practice towards your specific goals.

Click the button below to be added to our Partner Matching List ($10.00 for one year).



Guías are independent tutors and People-Places-Things acts as a matching service for both the Guía and the Cliente. Novices are only novice for a while, and the only way to guarantee the same Guía for an extended period of time is to pay them well. People-Places-Things charges $10 for a one-year membership to our matching service, which allows you to connect with as many Guias as you can handle during that time.

Guías set their own hourly prices in three levels of expertise. Many of our Guías are experienced tutors or teachers and also have developed fluency in English . Our Proficient Guias charge $10 or more per hour. The Expert level is perfect if you’re struggling with something highly technical (such as preparing an academic presentation or delving deeply into grammar), and will charge $20 an hour or more. If you’re low on cash, or your Spanish ability is high enough to interact on a basic level with a patient native speaker, you can work with a Novice who does not charge. We cannot guarantee your experience with a Novice, though generally P-P-T Staff will be there to support. Free sessions will usually be held at the Portland Mercado (7238 SE Foster Road, Portland, OR 97206); if you’re paying a Guía, you can meet anywhere that’s convenient for you.

The first meeting is always at the Mercado for 30 minutes and it’s always free, no matter the expertise level. This gives the Cliente and the Guía the opportunity to see if it’s a good match before making a commitment. After the first meeting concludes, the Cliente will make an “Offer” to the P-P-T representative who will pass it along which includes payment terms and scheduling. The Cliente will be notified within 24 hours whether the offer has been accepted or not. The Cliente always makes the offer, and the Guía has the ability to accept, decline, or negotiate. Generally, the offer will be accepted before the next meeting is set, and the Guía decides when to offer their contact information.

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