Skip links

Newsletter June 2016

Language Systems Newsletter

Editorial – Simple Summertime Satisfaction  By Paul Grosfield

          The summer is almost upon us, and here in Southern California that means that there are a number of activities that you can enjoy. Obvious examples are having fun at the beach, enjoying the sunshine on a picnic, and seeing an outdoor concert at the Hollywood Bowl, but I would like to introduce you to a simpler refreshing activity to do that you may not be able to do so easily back home: drinking a root beer float.

            On a hot summer day, you may agree that sometimes there is no better way to beat the heat than a cool glass of lemonade. However, there is a lesser-known beverage called a “root beer float” that you might like even better. It’s very simple to make, or, if you prefer, you can just buy one at a 1950s-style American diner like Johnny Rockets.

            So what is a root beer float? First of all, despite its name, there is no alcohol in this beverage. “Root beer” is a misnomer, which means that the actual object doesn’t match what its name says. In the same way, a “peanut” is neither a pea nor a nut, and “root beer” is not beer, it’s actually a kind of soda (although it is flavored with a type of root). In appearance, it looks like Coke or Pepsi, but the flavor is completely different. It has a particular flavor that some people don’t care for, but even if you have tried this soda and didn’t like it, you should still try a root beer float because it tastes very different and is almost magical. The difference is, the float has a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the root beer, preferably in a frosted glass mug. When a mug is “frosted”, it means it has been in the freezer and as a result, the glass has a thin layer of ice all over it. This is the best possible drink when it’s hot, in my humble opinion. You probably wouldn’t want one every day because it’s very sweet and kind of heavy, but every once in a while it can make your day.

            Sometimes people put the ice cream (only vanilla flavored) in other kinds of soda, but as far as I’m concerned, nothing else is even close to comparing to the deliciousness of the root beer version. Another reason I’m suggesting this summer beverage is that it’s kind of a part of American culture because root beer isn’t readily available in many other countries like it is here. So if you would like a different way to cool down in the heat, get yourself a root beer float!

Language Systems Lifestyle – Soccer Tournament 2016  By Carlos Takashima, PC NELA

           This year’s soccer tournament was nothing short of a success. Students had the opportunity to experience an entirely new venue with state of the art fields and great weather. The teams showed up in high spirits ready to claim the main prize for the most popular tournament of the year.

            The energy was high and the excitement of it all kept the cheers going through the entire tournament. There were a couple of injuries, but that’s because the speed and intensity of the games were at an all time, competitive high. This year, the championship was re-claimed by last year’s defending champions from Language Systems Orange County. This team came ready to take on any team that stepped on the field against them and proved it with wide margin victories.

             During the tournament, Language Systems had a camera crew interviewing students regarding their experience in school and their feelings about the tournament. People took photo booth pictures with their friends while catching snacks and drinks, and of course, everyone had a positive experience. Because let’s face it, we would rather be out of class and school to enjoy snacks and a game on a perfectly nice Friday morning and afternoon.

             Let’s hope that next year Language Systems holds the tournament in the same place and that every team trains with exuberance to prove that their school has the best to offer in athletics, while showing off their English skills with other students and on the field. Let’s make next year just as great.

Discover in LA (DT) – The Sound of Music at the Hollywood Bowl! 

You might have already heard of the famous Hollywood Bowl.

The Hollywood Bowl is an amphitheater located in the heart of Hollywood. It is outdoors and a lot of very well known artists perform there every year!
There are so many wonderful artists performing there this month, including Paul Simon and Andrea Bocelli!
There is also a very special event for The Sound of Music fans! It’s the Sound of Music Sing Along! They play the movie on a big screen and everyone sings the famous songs together! It’s really a great event! Do you want to start practicing? Here is one of the most well known songs from the movie:


Let’s start at the very beginning
A very good place to start
When you read you begin with A B C
When you sing you begin with Do Re Me
Do Re Me, Do Re Me
The first three notes just happen to be
Do Re Me, Do Re Me
Do Re Me Fa So La Ti
Let’s see if I can make it easier
Doe, a deer, a female deer
Ray, a drop of golden sun
Me, a name I call myself
Far, a long long way to run
Sew, a needle pulling thread
La, a note to follow so
Tea, a drink with jam and bread
That will bring us back to Do, oh ohoh
Do Re Me Fa So La Ti Do, So Do
‘Now children, Do Re Me Fa So and so on
Are only the tools we use to build a song
Once you have these notes in your heads’
‘You can sing a million different tunes by mixing them up
Like this’
So Do La Fa Me Do Re
‘Can you do that?’
So Do La Fa Me Do Re
So Do La Ti Do Re Do
So Do La Ti Do Re Do
‘Now, put it all together’
So Do La Fa Mi Do Re
So Do La Ti Do Re Do
‘But it doesn’t mean anything?’
‘So we put in words’
‘One word for every note, like this’
When you know the notes to sing
You can sing most anything
When you know the notes to sing
You can sing most anything

For more information on the Hollywood Bowl events, here is the June calendar:

Free in LA  – The Griffith Observatory 

The Griffith Observatory is one of L.A.’s greatest cultural attractions, offering spectacular views from the Pacific Ocean to Downtown L.A. from its perch on Mt. Hollywood in Griffith Park. The observatory and accompanying exhibits were opened to the public on May 14, 1935. In its first five days of operation, the observatory welcomed more than 13,000 visitors. Today, the Griffith Observatory is renowned as a national leader in public astronomy, and a beloved gathering place for visitors and Angelenos alike.

Admission to the building, grounds, and parking is always FREE.
Tuesday – Friday, 12:00 Noon – 10:00 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday, 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m.

Language Systems Faces

Iain McConnell is a teacher and an assistant program coordinator at the Los Angeles campus.

1) Hey Iain, how long have you worked at LS-DTLA?
I have worked at Language Systems for eight years.
2) Wow! That’s a long time! What is your favorite part about working at LS-DTLA?
I love the atmosphere at Language Systems. I have great co-workers, professional teachers, devoted office staff, and a wonderful Program Coordinator, not to mention great students.
3) What do you like teaching the best at LS-DTLA?
I like teaching grammar the most, but I also like reading and TOEIC!
4) What kind of books do you like to read in your free time?
I like to read all kinds of books, but I would have to say my favorite types of books to read come from authors like Franz Kafka, Dostoevsky, Italo Calvino and Jorges Luis Borges.
5) What other things do you like to do in your free time?
I like hiking, playing mandolin and taking photographs of nature.

Student Article 1The Sights, Sounds and Flavors of a Great Day By Margarita, level 6, DTLA

          Everyday new opportunities appear around us to fill our lives with fresh thoughts. It can be a simple drive to a new place, new film, or a walk with friends in an exotic restaurant. Last weekend I had a great opportunity to act like a fan and have a great time at the Language Systems’ soccer tournament.

          When my husband and I parked the car near the field, we looked around and saw a wonderful view on the hills. The sun shone so brightly that some of the players needed to apply sunscreen. The atmosphere was very friendly and fun. I heard all the students screaming the names of their teams loudly.

          About 200 steps away from the field there was a small building with restrooms, a few tables and benches outside. Between the games we went to the building and tried some food and drinks. I couldn’t say it was delicious, but I really liked the brownie cakes; they tasted like they came from a cafe! All the students were standing in line to grab a piece of hot pizza. It was very funny because Ligia, our esteemed Program Coordinator, was telling side-splitting jokes into a mega-phone.

          All the area near the field was full of life. I really enjoyed this place because of its location. Sitting in a place like this I can smell the fresh air and hear the wind in my ears.

Student Article 2Impressions of a Tournament: Language Systems in the Beautiful San Rafael Hills By Halam, level 6, DTLA

          I got a strong impression from the Language Systems soccer tournament. The first game pitted the Downtown campus against the Northeast campus. We were all sitting in the stands cheering for our teams when the game started. The energy, the force of our cheers pushed our team to score the first goal early. A little while later, our opponents kicked one in the net, tying the game 1-1. Moments later, our team scored another and a few minutes before the end of the first half, another goal brought our lead up 3-1! Because of our comfortable lead, we didn’t do much – just watched and enjoyed the game. By the time the second half finished, our team had scored two more goals to defeat our opponents 5-1!

          In the final game, Downtown faced off against last year’s tournament winner, Orange County. We cheered our team even harder! They scored first but we answered with two goals. In the second half, Orange County tied the game at 2. Later, they scored again and the game ended: Orange County 3 – Downtown 2. So our team lost, but this year our team came in second place and our players did a good job. It was very exciting and a good experience.

Join the Discussion