I have participated in 15+ Global Volunteer programs in Poland. I've done the language camps for high school students in Zakopane, participated in teaching in the village school programs, and also participated in multiple language camps at the Reymontowka Conference Center near Siedlce. My experience now ranges over a 10 year period and I can see the impact of the English teaching program, as I've seen children move from elementary school to becoming successful university students.
A typical day is to teach about 4 hours and then have the other half of the work day for preparation for the next day. At the language camps we often are treated to programs by the students in the evening as they share their talents or do a program to acquaint the volunteers with Polish history and culture. Often when teaching the village school programs, one is invited to go along on a field trip with the students to a national park in Poland or a historic site. If one is there on a holiday such as Mother's Day, of course the volunteers are included in the activities the children present for their mothers. When one is at Reymontowka in May, the volunteers can enjoy a cultural festival called Majowka, and often regarded as honored guests by the Polish people.
The weekends are free time. I've traveled to many other places in Poland during these weekends. The train system in Poland makes it easy to get to Krakow, for example, from either Zakopane or the Reymontowka Conference Center. Warsaw is only an hour away by train from Siedlce, so it easy to go there for the weekend or even just an afternoon.
I'm often asked if I have Polish ancestry and explain no. That's when one of the Polish teachers with whom I've worked several times interrupted and said, "But you have a Polish soul."
I've never had difficulties during any of these programs. The only real difficulties I've seen others have are health problems such as a dental emergency. The Global Volunteer team leader is trained to deal with problems such as this and help a volunteer to get needed health or dental care.
The Polish countryside is beautiful -- this often a surprise to a visitor to the country for the first time. The food is plentiful and excellent. Now in 2012, it is easy to access the Internet to keep in touch with home.