What’s the trick to getting candy on Halloween? Just say “Trick or Treat!”   On October 31st each year, hoards of children invade their neighborhoods dressed up in costumes and go door-to-door asking for candy. In exchange for dressing up and saying “Trick or Treat,” they usually receive a piece of candy or two. But where did this tradition come from? Some believe the holiday is based off the ancient Celtic and Christian winter festivals, during which it was common to dress up in costumes, particularly on nights when supernatural beings were said to be abroad. In modern times, Americans spend an estimated $6 billion annually on Halloween candy, decorations, and at theme parks, making it the nation’s second-largest commercial holiday. So tomorrow, come up to the front desk and say this magic phrase, and there will be a sweet treat for you!  

Farewell Graduates!

EC Los Angeles wishes the best of luck to all the departing students this week. We hope the rest of your journey in life is full of joy and more wonderful experiences. Keep practicing English, and come back to visit soon!

Donut Day

Today our students enjoyed some glazed donuts from Krispy Kreme! The classic American treat was a huge hit and some students were coming back for seconds as they hung out between classes this morning. If there was this much hype over these fluffy little guys, I can’t wait to see how the students go crazy over all the Halloween candy coming next week!

Your Weather Forecast for the Week

  Despite the rain that rolled through on Thursday morning, the weather here in sunny SoCal has been just that – sunny. Yesterday was a blazing 91 degrees Fahrenheit in Santa Monica, and it should stay in the mid-80’s for the rest of the week, before it cools down to the mid-70’s for the weekend. What is this California girl’s suggestion? Soak up the sun while it lasts! It feels like summer, so act like it’s summer by going to the beach for some surf lessons or sun bathing, grabbing some ice cream and funnel cake at the Pier, or splashing around in a pool before the weather realizes it’s almost winter. Even today, the Mother Nature seems a little confused with a strong wind pushing in the marine layer, causing a thin fog to roll in from the ocean (pictured above). It’s creating a eerie mist that serves as a reminder that this warm weather won’t last forever, even if we do live in one of the most temperate regions in the United States.

Thanksgiving Activity

This Thanksgiving, we have a very exciting opportunity for our students to visit Yosemite, Santa Barbara and San Francisco, all in one inclusive trip! Get back to nature during your one day tour of the famous Redwood Forests in Yosemite, then enjoy the beaches in Santa Barbara and the unique culture of San Francisco for two days. You’ll be thankful you went on this trip, because the tour package includes day tours of San Francisco and Santa Barbara and admission to Yosemite National Park. Don’t miss out on this unique trip during long weekend vacation from Thursday November 22nd to Sunday Novemeber 25th. Be sure to sign up soon, because the trip is SURE to sell out!

ASPIRE to Study Well

ASPIRE is a simple acronym to help you approach studying this weekend! When you aspire to learn, you accomplish your studying goals and you feel the success of your efforts. A is for Approach: Approach studying with a positive, can-do attitude. S is for Scan: Scan through your notes and previous reading to refresh your mind and help you decide what needs the most focus during your study session. P is for Piece together the Parts: Piece together what you’ve already studied and summarize what you already understand well. I is for Inquire: Inquire from sources like teachers, tutors or peers. Don’t be shy about asking for help when you need it! R is for Reflect and Relay: Reflect on the information as you’re studying. Does it make sense to you? What is another way I can apply what I’m learning? And Relay that information to others or out loud to really solidify what you’ve studied in your mind. E is for Examine: Examine your progress as your studying. Are you staying on track? How well are you recalling things that you’ve studied in the past?

Take Me to Beverly Hills

So you want to explore Beverly Hills? Here’s a quick guide to the walking tour EC Los Angeles takes through the area! To get to Beverly Hills from school, you take the 720 Metro bus. The bus drops off at Beverly Drive, which has a lot of shops, but I prefer to go on the famous Rodeo. At the corner of Wilshire and Rodeo is the picturesque Via Rodeo Drive, which is a short walking area with a beautiful fountain at the front and old-style buildings that house the most expensive stores in the area. After a quick walk through Via Rodeo, I continue up Rodeo Drive, which is only two blocks long, but full of a lot of stores to explore. Once I hit South Santa Monica Blvd, I cross the street, then turn left to head to Sprinkles Cupcakes! This is a store dedicated to just making delicious cupcakes with all sorts of flavors. If you like sweets, you definitely want to make a stop here. There is also an ice cream shop and cupcake ATM run by the same company right next door. Nearby is a self-serve frozen yogurt store, Menchies, where you can make your own sundaes – a great way to cool off after a long walk through Rodeo Drive. After I stop for a snack, I continue down South Santa Monica Blvd to the Beverly Hills sign located on the corner of S Santa Monica Blvd and Moreno Drive. It’s around 15 minute walk from Sprinkles to the sign, but it’s worth the photo opp! After a quick photo shoot at the sign, I usually back track to the bus stop to go back to the school. You can take the same 720 Metro bus back to school by walking to the corner of Wilshire and … Read more