Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Ice Skating at Pershing Square - Downtown L.A.

Last Saturday, December 13, evening teacher Martin took 10 students to go ice skating Downtown at Pershing Square.
Every November the City of Los Angeles erects an ice rink at Pershing Square where people can ice skate for just $12.
Students from Brazil, Japan, Mongolia, Taiwan and Venezuela enjoyed the activity immensely.  
Martin Mazloom - Teacher at the DTLA campus 

Monday, December 15, 2014

Hike at the Donald Trump Golf Course


On Sunday, December 14th the South Bay LA Campus went on a hike at the Donald Trump Golf Course in Rancho Palos Verdes. This hike has sweeping ocean views and a picnic area.  


Students joined TOEFL teacher Katie and ESL teacher Kurt on this outdoor, rugged adventure. At the end, we had coffee at the indoor cafe and watched the sun go down. It was a great day for outdoor exercise on the coast of California.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The Hotel Café in Hollywood, CA

Last Saturday night, students from Language Systems - LA Campus ventured to one of Hollywood’s premier music venues – The Hotel Café. Despite the name, it is neither a hotel nor a café, but instead a restaurant and bar which features some of LA’s top talent playing in a comfortable, ambient lounge setting. 

On this particular evening, the students came to the Hotel Café to hear the musical stylings of Smithfield Bargain, an LA-based jazz-folk band, as well as the music of an amazing group of three girls called The Honey Whiskey Trio.  

Situated in one of Hollywood’s best walkable areas near Cahuenga and Hollywood Blvd, it’s easy to find something to suit your fancy. Bonus: it's close to a metro stop, so no need to worry about traffic or parking!

Daniel- Downtown LA teacher

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

The Midnight Mission (TMM)

On Saturday November 22nd & Sunday November 23rd, 35 LSI students & friends joined me at The Midnight Mission (TMM) to help with their Thanksgiving prep. Thanksgiving is the busiest day of the year for them, serving over 2,300 meals on that day alone. The mission needed dedicated volunteers to help them with the food preparation. We were more than happy to lend them a hand!

On Saturday, we peeled and chopped yams from 10am-1pm. Harris, one of the volunteer coordinators, gave us a personal tour of the mission before we got started. We learned about the history and purpose of TMM, how they've been helping people get off the streets and build their lives back again. TMM has been operating for 100 years now and they've only missed one day of serving meals! Later, our group enjoyed a wonderful lunch at Urth Caffe minutes from TMM.

On Sunday, we helped chop vegetables & prepare lots of turkey! One of the TMM assistants took us on a tour after we finished. It was a wonderful experience overall. It inspired many to continue with volunteer work and also appreciate the little things in life we often take for granted. We had such fun and positive energy throughout the two days we volunteered. Looking forward to scheduling more volunteer events the next coming months.

Caroline - LSILA Teacher

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

LSI Halloween Party 2014

Every year LSI throws a Halloween Party for hundreds of international students, and it is always so much fun to see how creative the students can get with their costumes.  
This year, there were 4 categories for the costume contest: Most Creative, Funniest, Scariest, and Best Couple/Group. The Best Couple Costume went to a male and female student who dressed up as a kind of zombie couple in wedding outfits. They were both really scary looking. I think they even freaked out a couple of the judges when they did their walk in front of the judging panel. It was a lot of fun! 
During the party, students had many chances to win prizes like one-of-a-kind LSI Halloween t-shirts and gift cards.  We also had a special performance from a Japanese student representing the LSI-Los Angeles campus. He did a dance impersonation of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.” The audience cheered and clapped in response to this student’s cool performance.  
Of course, we all enjoyed the all-you-can-eat buffet of delicious Japanese food. After dinner, the performance, and the costume contest, it was time to dance the night away as the DJ played hits for LSI students gathered on the dance floor. For our international students, Halloween is always a special opportunity to experience one of the most interesting holidays in American culture.

Monday, November 3, 2014

#BestGhostStory winner

1300 Federal Ave. Suite #013. Private room apartment, cheap, and near school. Luckily I found it in Craigslist. I start moving today. I hope everything is ok. 

(bell rings - someone opens the door)
“Come in, Carla! Just help yourself, ok? Make yourself at home, I’m really busy today. I am going to attend an event,” says the landlord.
Carla pulls her luggage inside the house.
“Time to go! Alright, whatever happens don’t open the room beside you, the room is connected to my clinic, so I don't want you to bug my work and my stuff in there” says the landlord.
“Wait... What’s your job, and what clinic?” asks Carla
“I’m a beautician and  that’s my beauty clinic. Alright, if something happens, call me. I have already put my number on the fridge, Bye! Have a good night!" says the beautician. 
(the door slams)

“Okay. First night, alone. I have no clue about this place. And why is it so hot inside?” says Carla to herself, feeling confused.
Carla takes a shower.  She is washing her hair when suddenly she feels her hair coming out. It separates easily from her head to her feet, “Whose hair is it? it’s long…...No!” Quickly Carla leaves the shower, takes a towel, but suddenly all the long hair is gone. She tries to clean the steam on the mirror when suddenly she sees a woman with long hair in the mirror. Carla is shocked, so she tries to look at the bathroom sink.
“Go! This is not your place!” yells the woman.

Carla calls the landlord, but there's no answer. She feels really tired. She lays on the bed trying to sleep, leaving the table lights on. She falls asleep. Suddenly, she feels her hair being pulled by someone. Someone touches her face.
“Help! Help!” A noise comes from another room.  They punch on the wall so hard.
“Arrrgh arrrgh, my face, stop with my hair...what are you doing?!?" A girl is screaming loudly in another room, and the others don’t stop pounding on the wall.
Carla cannot move her hands, feeling constricted. Carla feels someone pulling her hair fiercely and stretching her face. Suddenly the pulling hand stops, changing to strangle her neck. Carla is choking and coughing, everything is dark. She tries to reach the table when suddenly she feels another hand there.
“ARGHHHHH!” Carla screams. She opens her eyes and sees her room with the lights on.
“Something is wrong with this house!!!" Carla says to herself.

Carla goes outside of her room. She looks at the door of the next room. She grabs the knob... and it’s unlocked. She opens the door, walks slowly into the darkness; an old lamp is giving an obscure light. She walks slowly with bare feet and feels a lot of hair in her way. The room smells putrid, and she looks at a mannequin face with the ...
“What’s that? It’s not plastic... It seems like real skin. No! No! Impossible!” Carla says to herself. 
Carla continues walking when suddenly she crashes into something: a big wood block, its height half of hers. It seems like a big chest. Carla opens the chest and she sees a woman, cold, the same one she saw in the bathroom mirror. She’s lying inside the chest with long hair and a few sutures on her face.
“Oh my God!” Carla fiercely runs back to the door - she opens it and a woman – the beautician – is already there to stop her in her tracks.
The beautician speaks slowly: “Have you met my daughter? She is beautiful now, isn't she? I don't think she needed to commit suicide because of her face deformity. I can make her beautiful! Like now! Well, I think she will be very happy today, cause she will get a new wig made of your beautiful hair and she will have your beautiful face.”

The End

By Caroline Sorta, TOEFL - LSILA  #BestGhostStory

Monday, October 20, 2014

Runyon Canyon Hike

On October 18th, 2014, Aluisio led a group of 12 LSI students from Downtown LA and their friends on a hike through Runyon Canyon Park.
We met at LSI around 2pm, took the red line metro at Wilshire/Vermont and got off at the Hollywood/Highland station. From there, we walked to Runyon Canyon Park (2001 N Fuller Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046).
The park is located in the far east end of the Santa Monica Mountains, just west of the Hollywood Sign and with amazing views of the Los Angeles landscape, the Hollywood Hills and Mulholland Drive. We hiked up and down both east and west hills on the Canyon.
I often go there on my own as the Park is at a walking distance from my place. It was the students’ (and their friends’) first time there. We all had a great time, and plan on going back. @LSILA
          By Aluisio Leite 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Universal Studios

      "We went to Universal Studios on September 22, 2014. It was very fun and we took all the rides because it was Monday. Jason was very nice. I lost something important when we took the King Kong ride and he helped me find it."  
Lin, Shu-Yu @LSINE

   "What a wonderful day in Universal Studios. Jason took us to try all the facilities. I have been there many times, but I still feel happy because we all had a good time and a different experience together."
Wu, Po-Yi (Level 5) @LSINE

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Hotel Cafe in Hollywood!

 October 7th, 2014 at the Hotel Café in Hollywood, CA

Last Tuesday night, LSI Downtown students ventured to one of Hollywood’s premier music venues – #TheHotelCafé. Despite the name, it is neither a hotel nor a café, but instead a restaurant and bar which features some of LA’s top talent playing in a comfortable, ambient lounge setting. On this particular evening, the LSI students came to the Hotel Café to hear the musical stylings of Smithfield Bargain, an LA-based jazz-folk band, as well as the music of funk/soul songstress Melissa Polinar and Portland, OR orchestral band "The Wrecking Yard." Situated in one of Hollywood’s best walkable areas near Cahuenga and Hollywood Blvd, it’s easy to find something to suit your fancy.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Trick or treat

Halloween is a holiday that Americans celebrate every year on October 31st. It is an ancient pagan holiday that started in Ireland. The ‘een’ in Halloween comes from evening. This is because centuries ago it was an evening when people spoke with the ghosts of their family and friends! 

Today it is a fun, exciting holiday when people carve pumpkins, dress up in costumes and visit people’s homes, and say ‘trick or treat!’ to get some candy! 

Another fun Halloween activity is the LSI Halloween party that we have every year. Here, you and your friends can play games, carve a pumpkin, eat candy and practice English vocabulary words like “haunted”, “jack o “lantern” and “spooky”! You may even be the winner of the LSI best costume contest!

Taken from our monthly e-Newsletter  

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

The Queen Mary

The Queen Mary arrived in Long Beach on December 9, 1967. It is now a floating hotel, event and wedding location, and the home to 3 world class restaurants. 

The Queen Mary had her first trip on May 27, 1936. With swimming pools, 5 dining areas, cocktail bars, a grand ballroom, and even a small hospital, this luxury ship carried the rich and famous from Hollywood celebrities like Bob Hope and Clark Gable to dignitaries like Winston Churchill.

By 1965, air travel had become a more popular way to travel and The Queen Mary had lost a lot of business. The owners then decided to retire the ship. Its last cruise ended in Long Beach, where it now stays. 

Because of its long history, many people claim that The Queen Mary is haunted, meaning that many ghosts live there. Guests of the hotel are sometimes scared by strange sights and sounds. During Halloween, The Queen Mary hosts the "Dark Harbor" event. It's a fun and scary way to experience this great place.

Taken from our monthly e-Newsletter  

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Serious Drought in California

Have you seen this billboard on the freeway? 

How many times have you left the water running down the sink? Have you ever thrown away water that you didn't want to drink or use anymore? 

It is time to take action and start thinking about what we can do in our daily routine that can help save water, protect our threatened animals and plants, and make everybody aware of this issue.  @LSILA @LSINE @LSIOC @LSISB
By Cristina Gonzalez 

Monday, September 15, 2014

Dodgers Game!

On Wednesday night, September 10th, teacher John B. from LSI Downtown took 15 students to the Dodger baseball game at Dodger Stadium. It was the first time for most of the students to attend a Major League baseball game, but we also had a few die-hard Dodger fans as well. 

It was interesting watching students from Japan, Korea, Thailand, Brazil, and Taiwan wolfing down hotdogs and super-sized nachos, while watching the Dodgers beat San Diego 4-0. @LSILA

Hope to see you again next season!! Go Dodgers!!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Bowling Night

On Friday, September 5th, several LSI students joined the LSI teacher Caroline Leva for some late night bowling and billiards fun at the Shatto 39 Lanes. Everyone had a blast! A total of 40 students came to the event. Some invited their friends along to enjoy as well. We were everywhere at the Shatto Lanes :) It was great energy and lots of laughs all throughout.  @LSILA
                            See all the pictures and join us next time!