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American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download
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American Holidays and Celebrations with Photos, Dates, Information, History from Larisa School of Language Nikolaev Ukraine Free PDF Download

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This American Holidays and Celebrations e-Book is perfect for anyone who wants to learn more about Americas traditions and Celebrations. Great information and photos about all major holidays and …

This American Holidays and Celebrations e-Book is perfect for anyone who wants to learn more about Americas traditions and Celebrations. Great information and photos about all major holidays and more. It includes information, dates and more about New Years, Martin Luther King and more!

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  • 1. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThis book is brought to you by The LSL Education Network headquarteredin Nikolaev Ukraine.Additional copies and other learning resources can be downloaded athttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThis book is presented to all individuals eager to gain knowledge aroundthe world. This book was originally created by The U.S Department of State andThe Bureau of International Information Programs. The Bureau of InternationalInformation Programs of the U.S. Department of State publishes eJournal USA.Each journal examines a major issue facing the United States and the internationalcommunity, and informs international readers about U.S. society, values, thought,and institutions.Additional copies of this book may be found at;Larisa School of Language LLC63/3 Shevchenko Nikolaev Ukraine 54001Skype: LarisaschooloflanguageCorporate 380-512-71-71-96Школа Английского Языка «Лариса»Украина, 54001, г. Николаев, ул. Шевченко, 63 (угол Советской), 2й этажТел: (0512) 71-71-96, (097) 820-23-94http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.netContact Larisa@larisaschooloflanguage.comAdditional resources can be found using the following links.Larisa Online Language Storehttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/language_Downloads.htmlSkype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.htmlFree English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.htmlFlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.htmlFree Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html2
  • 2. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netContentsContentsBirthdays & Anniversaries 4New Years Day 7Martin Luther King Day 11Selected First In Black History 16Black History Month 18Chinese New Year 19Presidents Day 22Native American Powwows 32Selected First In Womens History 35Womens History Month - 37 37Selected First In Asian Pacific American History 38Asian Pacific American Month 40Memorial Day 41Mothers Day & Fathers Day 45Graduation 49Flag Day 52Juneteenth 57Independence Day 60Labor Day 67Selected First In Hispanic History 71Hispanic Heritage Month 73Columbus Day 74Halloween 78Thanksgiving Day 82Veterans Day 88Christmas Day 923
  • 3. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netA birthday girl blows out the candles on herbirthday cake.Anniversary celebrations are thosethat commemorate a particular date orpast event. This might be an historicalevent, such as the first walk on the Moon;a military event, such as the beginning orending of a war; a national event, such asthe birth of a nation or the signing of aconstitution; or a more personal event,such as the opening of a new business orthe receipt of an award. Usually when werefer to anniversaries we are referring toa yearly event, but people may alsochoose to celebrate monthly orbiannually. A large celebration might beheld on a centennial anniversary. Ananniversary celebration ranges from asmall personal event such as a dinner fortwo people, to a large city-wide eventsuch as a parade or fireworks.Anniversary celebrations might beaccompanied by balloons, flowers,special meals, or presents. In this reading,we discuss two common celebrations:birthdays and wedding anniversaries.BirthdaysBirthdays are celebrated in a varietyof ways in the United States.A birthday is considered a special dayfor the birthday person, so the person willoften get special treatment from friendsand family.Children are usually very excitedabout their birthdays. At a very early age,children know when their birthdays areand how old they are. Parents often host aparty on their children’s birthdays. Theywill invite school friends, neighbors, orfamily members. It is expected that thepeople who are invited to a child’sbirthday party will bring a present for thebirthday child, unless they are told not to.The birthday party will undoubtedlyfeature a birthday cake topped withlighted candles, one candle for each year.As the cake is brought to the table,everyone sings “Happy Birthday.” Whenthe cake is set before the birthday boyor birthday girl, he or she is supposed tomake a wish (without telling anyonewhat it is) and blow out the candles. If allthe candles go out with one breath, thenthe wish is supposed to come true. Ice4Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 4. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netcream is usually served with the cake.Children often open their presents afterthe cake and ice cream are served.Children’s birthday parties often include birthdayhats and noisemakers for everyone.Adults also celebrate their birthdays,though not as regularly as children. Ifsomeone wants to celebrate his/ her ownbirthday, he or she may plan a party andinvite friends or family. It is more likelythat an adult will have a party if thebirthday is a “big” one, such as for an agethat ends in 0 or 5. Another “big” one isthe age of 21 when a person is consideredto be an adult. Sometimes adults get giftsat a birthday party, but not always. Andwhile it is customary to say “HappyBirthday,” it is not usually appropriate toask an adult how old he or she is. Atwork, colleagues may celebrate abirthday by giving a group card, flowers,cake, or by taking the person out tolunch. Colleagues will often wish theperson a happy birthday. However not allwork places celebrate birthdays, and, infact, many adults don’t want to celebratetheir birthdays. Some people don’t likethe reminder that they are continuallygetting older; others just don’t like beingthe center of attention.Singing “Happy Birthday to You”when cake, flowers, or presents are givenis a long-standing tradition. The song waswritten by two American sisters in 1893,and has been translated into severallanguages around the world.Wedding AnniversariesWedding anniversaries occur on thesame day of the year the wed-ding tookplace. Married couples have manydifferent ways of celebrating, but it iscommon for them to give each otherflowers or small gifts, or enjoy a specialdinner together. Sometimes couples plana trip for themselves to celebrate thisspecial day. On a couple’s first weddinganniversary, it is customary for them toeat the top tier of their wedding cake thatthey had saved and frozen just for thisday.Many wedding anniversarycelebrations are quiet events that includejust the married couple, but sometimes,especially if the couple has been marrieda long time, they will plan a party thatincludes their children, grandchildren,and possibly siblings, nieces, andnephews. At some large weddinganniversary celebrations, such as a 50thanniversary, a granddaughter or otherrelative might wear the bride’s weddingdress. Sometimes the couple decides torenew their wedding vows in front oftheir progeny.Traditionally, specific materials areassociated with particular anniversaryyears. Usually, the longer the period oftime, the more precious or durable is thematerial that is associated with it.Sometimes the couple – or their families– use the list for gift suggestions.5Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 5. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netA couple celebrates their 50th weddinganniversary.The traditional listincludes:1 year – paper anniversary5 years – wood anniversary10 years – tin or aluminum anniver-sary20 years – china (porcelain) anni-versary25 years – silver anniversary50 years – gold anniversary75 years – diamond anniversaryGlossarycommemorate: v. to hold aceremony or observation to remembersomeone or a group or event or actionbiannual(ly): adv. occurring twice ayear, also called “semi-annual.”Something that occurs every two years isbiennial.centennial: n. occuring once in ahundred yearsfireworks: n. a display of explosivedevices as part of a celebrationtopped: adj. placed on topbirthday boy or girl: adj+n. a termcommonly used to refer to a child on theday of his or her birthcustomary: adj. commonly practicedor used as a matter of course; usualtier: n. a layervow: n. a solemn promise orcommitment to a prescribed role,typically to marriageprogeny: n. a child or descendentdurable: adj. able to resist wear ordecay well; lasting6Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 6. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netJANUARY 1The air in Times Square, New York City, is filledwith confetti on New Year’s Eve.In the United States, people begincelebrating the new year on December31, New Year’s Eve. Many people haveparties, and sometimes masqueradeballs, where guests dress up in costumeand cover their faces with masks to hidetheir identity. According to an oldtradition, guests unmask, or remove theirmasks, at midnight.Many people enjoy the tradition ofwatching the New Year’s festivities inTimes Square in the heart of New YorkCity. This celebration is telecast live onnews channels across the nation.Traditionally, at one minute beforemidnight, a lighted ball begins to dropslowly from the top of a pole that isattached to a building. As the ball drops,all the people in Times Square – andmany television viewers as well – countdown the final minute of the year. At thestroke of midnight, the ball reaches thebottom of the pole, and a huge “HappyNew Year” sign lights up. Then TimesSquare is filled with cheers andnoisemakers. Confetti is dropped fromwindows above, and revelers hug, kiss,and wish each other a “Happy NewYear!”For the Times Square New Year’s Eve celebrationin the year 2000, the ball had 168 crystal lightbulbs, was 6 feet (2 meters) in diameter, andweighed 1070 pounds (486 kilos).7Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html
  • 7. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThe tradition of counting down thelast minute or final seconds of the year isa highlight of New Year’s Eve, not onlyin Times Square, but at parties and get-togethers throughout the nation. Theexcitement grows as party-goers watchthe clock and count 10! 9! 8! 7! 6!...andshout “Happy New Year!!” at exactlymid- night, heralding in the new year.Some towns and cities host a “FirstNight” celebration, a large communitystreet party featuring food, music, andother entertainment. First Night partiesprovide a safe and, often, alcohol-freeenvironment for people of all ages tosocialize, celebrate, and “ring in theNew Year” together.At New Year’s Eve parties, peopleoften sing a traditional Scottish song,“Auld Lang Syne,” just after the clockstrikes midnight and the cheers of“Happy New Year” subside. Auld LangSyne was written in the 18th century bythe Scottish poet Robert Burns, and maybe based on an earlier poem by anotherScottish poet. The expression “auld langsyne” means “the old days gone by.”New Year’s DayOn January first, Americans mayrelax at home or visit friends, relatives,and neighbors. New Year’s Day get-togethers are often informal, butgenerally there is plenty to eat and drinkas loved ones and friends wish each otherthe best for the year ahead.Many families and friends watchtelevision together enjoying theTournament of Roses Parade, whichprecedes the Rose Bowl football game –both held in Pasadena, California.The parade was started in 1890, whenProfessor Charles F. Holder suggested tothe Pasadena Valley Hunt Club that theysponsor a parade to showcase the winterbeauty and sunshine of the area. Theparade was to be “an artistic celebrationof the ripening of the oranges” at thebeginning of the year. The first paradeconsisted of decorated, horse-drawncarriages. Motorized floats were added afew years later, and prizes were given forthe most beautiful floats.The event grew, and in 1895 theTournament of Roses Association wasformed to oversee the festivities. Soon,athletic competitions became part of theday’s events, along with an ostrich race,and once, a race between a camel and anelephant, in which the elephant won!To enhance the event and increasepublic interest, a collegiate football gamewas added in 1902, with StanfordUniversity playing against the Universityof Michigan. Today, the New Year’s DayRose Bowl game, featuring the two topcollege football teams in the nation is, formany Americans, the highlight of NewYear’s Day.From year to year, the parade offloats grew longer, and now theprocession takes over 2 1/2 hours totravel the 5 1/2-mile parade route throughthe streets of Pasadena, California. Theflower decorations also grew moreelaborate. Today the floats include high-tech animation, and every inch of thefloat must be covered with flowers orother natural plant material.8Free English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.html
  • 8. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAccording to the regulations, the elaborate floats in the Rose Bowl parade must be covered only in flowersand other natural materials.The theme of the Tournament ofRoses varies from year to year, and theparade now includes thousands ofparticipants in marching bands, onhorseback, and on the floats. Cityofficials and celebrities ride in the carspulling the floats, and a celebrity ischosen to be the grand marshal. Thequeen of the tournament, along with hercourt, rides on a special float, which isalways the most elaborate, being madefrom more than 250,000 flowers. Prizesare still given for the best, most beautifulfloats.Thousands of spectators line theparade route, arriving early in themorning or camping out overnight inorder to secure the best spot for viewingthe parade, which begins at 8 a.m.Spectators and participants alike enjoythe pageantry associated with theoccasion. Preparation for next year’sTournament of Roses begins on January2.Watching football games and paradesis not the only tradition on New Year’sDay. Americans, like people in manycountries, also promise to betterthemselves in the new year. SomeAmericans even write down their NewYear’s resolutions – promises tothemselves for improvement in thecoming year.9Free LSL English Grammar Speaking Drill Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Drill_Book_PDF.html
  • 9. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netGlossarycelebrate(ing): v. to observe (recognize)a holiday or other special day withceremonies, festivities, respect, orrejoicingmasquerade ball: n. a dance or socialgathering of people who are wearingmasks or coverings over their eyes orface so as not to be recognizedfestivity (ies): n. a joyous celebration orpartylive: adj. not prerecorded; broadcastduring the actual performancestroke of midnight: n. 12:00 a.m.exactly; when the clock shows or chimes12:00 a.m.confetti: n. small bits of colored paperthrown into the air to mark a celebrationreveler(s) : n. a person who is celebratingat a party or other festivityget-together(s): n. an informal party ormeetingparty-goer(s): n. a person who attends apartyherald (ing): v. to welcome or announce,often with ceremony, respect, orcelebrationstreet party: n. phrase, a celebration heldin the street(s) by a neighborhood orcommunityalcohol-free: adj. an event in which noalcoholic beverages are sold or allowedring in the new year: v. an expressionthat means to celebrate and welcome thenew yeartournament: n. a contest involving anumber of competitorsparade: n. a public procession or displayof people, animals, and/or things movingin a single lineRose Bowl: n. phrase. a specialtournament or final championshipcompetition held each year in Pasadena,California between competing Americanuniversity football (American style)teamssponsor: v. to provide financial orofficial supportshowcase: v. to display prominently inorder to show the positive featuresfloat(s): n. a platform carrying a display,usually pulled by a vehicle in paradesoversee: v. to direct, supervise, ormanageenhance: v. to make greater, morebeautiful, or to increase in valuecollegiate: adj. referring to college oruniversityelaborate: adj. complex, detailed, carriedout with carecelebrity(ies): n. a well-known orfamous personspectator(s): n. a person who watches anevent but does not actively participatecamp(ing) out: v. to wait in line a verylong time, even overnight, for an event orto buy a ticket; people bring sleepingbags, food, drinks, extra clothes, music,books, etc., to keep them comfortablewhile they wait in linepageantry: n. formal parades and playsrelated to an event10Skype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 10. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netTHIRD MONDAY IN JANUARY(The following is an excerpt from the speech entitled “I Have a Dream,” delivered by Dr.Martin Luther King, Jr. on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial on August 23, 1963.)l say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment Istill have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed:“We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal.”I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sonsof former slave-owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state sweltering with theheat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not bejudged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character...I have a dream today.I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama... will be transformed into a situation wherelittle black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls andwalk together as sisters and brothers.I have a dream today.I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall bemade low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, andthe glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will beable to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able totransform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With thisfaith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, tostand up for freedom together knowing that we will be free one day.This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning “Mycountry ‘tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of thepilgrim’s pride from every mountainside, let freedom ring.”And if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from theprodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California!But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!Let freedom ring from every hill and mole-hill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, letfreedom ring.When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from everystate and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men andwhite men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in thewords of that old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty, we are free atlast!”11IELTS Test Preparationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/IELTS_Test_Preparation_Plus.html
  • 11. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netDr. Martin Luther King speaks to a crowd ofpeople during the March on Washingtonon August 23, 1963.Martin Luther King Day honors thelife and legacy of one of the visionaryleaders of the Civil Rights Movementand recipient of the 1964 Nobel Prize forPeace.At a young age Martin Luther King,Jr. showed strong promise, skipping the9th and 12th grades and enteringMorehouse College at the age of 15. Hisbeliefs in equality and brotherly lovedeveloped early as he listened to thesermons of his father and grandfather,both ministers.In late 1955, Martin Luther King, Jr.received his doctorate degree intheology, and moved to Montgomery,Alabama, with his wife, Coretta ScottKing, to preach at a Baptist church.There, as in many southern states, hewitnessed the indignities suffered byAfrican Americans as a result of racism,discrimination, and unjust laws. Onelaw required all black passengers to ridein the back of public buses and to give uptheir seats to white passengers when thefront of the bus was full. Dr. King knewthat this law violated the rights of everyAfrican-American.On December 1, 1955, a courageousblack passenger, Rosa Parks, was arrestedand jailed for refusing to give up her seatto a white man. In response to the arrest,black leaders organized a boycott of thepublic buses in the city of Montgomery.Dr. King was asked to lead the protest.Thousands of people, black and white,refused to ride the bus; instead theyformed carpools and they walked. Dr.King urged people to demonstratepeacefully and not resort to violence.Nonetheless, the demonstrators and theirsupporters were constantly threatenedand attacked by those who did not wantthe system of inequality to change. Manyof the demonstrators were arrested andjailed. Dr. King’s home was bombed, butfortunately, his wife and children werenot injured.Despite the violence, the boycottcontinued, and the bus company sufferedgreat financial loss. Finally after 381days the boycott of the Montgomery bussystem was successful. The SupremeCourt declared the state of Alabama’ssegregation law unconstitutional. RosaParks, the woman whose small act ofprotest inspired the bus boycott, was laternamed the “Mother of the Civil RightsMovement.”12Speaking Practice Prohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Speaking_Practice_Pro.html
  • 12. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netRosa Parks is fingerprinted by the Montgomery,after refusing to give up her seat for a whitepassenger on the bus.The segregation of buses was justone of the many forms of injustice toAfrican Americans. Schools were alsosegregated throughout the south, andblack citizens were denied equal housing,equal pay, job opportunities, and fairvoting rights. Service in many hotels andrestaurants was also denied.The bus boycott brought inter-national attention to these inequities andto the leadership of Dr. King. Thecontinuing struggle for justice ultimatelyled to the Civil Rights Movement. Dr.King was at the forefront of thismovement, and became seen worldwideas a symbol and voice for the cause ofAfrican Americans.In 1957, Dr. King and other ministersfounded the Southern Christian Leader-ship Conference to advance the non-violent struggle against racism. In theyears that followed, Dr. King led manynon-violent demonstrations. He hadstudied the teachings of Mahatma Gandhiand believed strongly in the power ofnon-violent protest. Some black leadersand other citizens vehemently disagreedwith this philosophy. But King continuedto remind his followers that their fightwould be victorious if they did not resortto bloodshed. During the tumultuousyears of the Civil Rights Movement, Dr.King was jailed many times. From a jailin Birmingham, Alabama, he wrote thefamous words, “Injustice any- where is athreat to justice everywhere.”One of the key events of the CivilRights Movement was the March onWashington on August 23, 1963. A crowdof more than 250,000 people gathered inWashington, D.C. and, led by Dr. Kingthey marched to the Capitol Building tosupport the passing of laws thatguaranteed equal civil rights to everyAmerican citizen. On the steps of theLincoln Memo rial that day, Dr. Kingdelivered one of his most powerful andeloquent speeches, entitled “I Have aDream.” The March on Washington wasone of the largest gatherings of peoplethat the nation’s capital had everseen...and no violence occurred. Thefollowing year, in 1964, Dr. King wasawarded the Nobel Peace Prize forleading non-violent demonstrations.That same year the Civil Rights Actof 1964 was passed, calling for equalopportunity in employment andeducation. Martin Luther King, Jr. andthousands of others now knew that theyhad not struggled in vain. Yet there wasstill much work ahead to ensure that newlaws were enforced, and other inequitiesabolished.In the years that followed, Dr. Kinghelped champion many legislativereforms, including the Voting Rights Actof 1965, which guaranteed black citizensthe right to safely register and vote. That13Free English Clubhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_Russian_Club.html
  • 13. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netyear a record number of black voterswent to the polls.Dr. King at a news conferenceon August 16, 1965.On April 4, 1968, Martin LutherKing, Jr. was assassinated whilesupporting a workers’ strike in Memphis,Tennessee. He was just 39 years old. Allpeople who had worked so hard for peaceand civil rights were shocked and angry.The world grieved the loss of this greatman of peace. Martin Luther King’sdeath did not slow the Civil RightsMovement. In 1969 Coretta Scott Kingfounded the Martin Luther King, Jr.Center for Non-violent Social Change.She passed away in January of 2006,after working throughout her life to keepher husband’s dream alive. Today peoplecontinue to work for social justice.The Making of a HolidayThroughout the 1980s, controversysurrounded the idea of a Martin LutherKing Day. Dr. King’s widow, CorettaScott King, along with congressionalleaders and citizens had petitioned thePresident to make January 15, MartinLuther King Jr.’s birthday, a legalholiday.Coretta Scott King, widow of Dr. Martin LutherKing, Jr. speaks at a news conference in 1985.Many states were already observingthe day. However, some people did notwant to have any holiday recognizing Dr.King. Others wanted the holiday on theday he was assassinated. Finally, in1986, President Ronald Reagan declaredthe third Monday in January a federalholiday in honor of Dr. Martin LutherKing, Jr. On Monday, January 20, 1986,14English Course Informationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Lessons_Information.html
  • 14. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netpeople across the country celebrated thefirst official Martin Luther King Day, theonly federal holiday to commemorate anAfrican-American.Now, every year, there are quietmemorial services, as well as elaborateceremonies and public forums to honorDr. King and his dream, and to discussissues of social justice. Schools at alllevels offer courses, curricula, and eventsto teach about racism, equality, andpeace. Religious leaders give specialsermons extolling Dr. King’s lifelongwork for peace. Radio and televisionbroadcasts feature songs, speeches, andspecial programs that tell the history ofthe Civil Rights Movement and givehighlights of Dr. King’s life and times.Glossaryrecipient: n. person who receives a gift,award, or honordoctorate: n. the highest academicdegreetheology: n. study of religionwitness(ed): v. to observe a situation oreventindignity(ies): n. acts of disrespect andhumiliationracism: n. hatred and prejudice based onracial or ethnic backgrounddiscrimination: n. unfair treatmentbecause of race, color, age, etc.violate(d): v. to act against a right, law,or contractboycott: n. act of protest by refusing touse a product or serviceresort: v. to turn to an extreme actionunconstitutional: adj. not legalaccording to the Constitution of theUnited StatesCivil Rights Movement: n. politicalactivities during the 1950s and ‘60s toend discrimination and unfair lawssegregation: n. separation by race, color,age, or other characteristicfound(ed): v. to establish; to set up; tostartvehemently: adv. strongly, with angerbloodshed: n. violence resulting in injuryor deathtumultuous: adj. turbulent; troubledin vain: adv. phrase. without the hopedfor resultenforce(d): v. to make people obey lawsor rulesabolish(ed): v. to end or terminate by lawor decreereform(s): n. official or legal changespoll(s): n. voting placeassassinate(d): v. to kill; to murdersomeone in a planned waystrike: v. to refuse to work in order tomake demands on an employergrieve(d): v. to feel deep sorrow orsadness as when someone diescontroversy: n. dispute; debatepetition(ed): v. to request by means of aformal documentforum(s): n. place or meeting for openexchange of ideasextol(ling): v. to praise15Grammar Reviewhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Review.html
  • 15. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIN BLACK HISTORYJoseph RaineyGovernmentOriginally born a slave, Joseph Raineybecame politically active after the Civil War,working tirelessly for civil rights. In 1870 hebecame the first black U.S. Representative,eventually serving five terms as therepresentative for South Carolina.Science and MedicineIn 1940, Charles Drew invented the bloodbank, the method for collecting and storinglarge amounts of blood plasma for later use. In1941 Drew also became the director of the firstAmerican Red Cross Blood Bank.Literature and PublishingIn 1773, Phillis Wheatley published herbook Poems on Various Subject, Religious andMoral. She is considered the founder ofAfrican-American literature.FilmIn 1919, Oscar Micheaux wrote, directed,and produced the film The Homesteader.Between 1919 and 1948, Micheaux producedand directed more that 45 films, and was one ofthe few independent filmmakers to have such along and successful career outside ofHollywood.Phyllis Wheately16Free Trial Lessonhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 16. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netTodd DuncanMusicIn 1945, Todd Duncan became the firstAfrican-American singer in the New York CityOpera. He later went on to create the role ofPorgy in Gershwin’s famous musical Porgy andBess.Air and SpaceRobert H. Lawrence became the first blackastronaut in 1967, but died in a plane crashbefore his first trip into space. In 1983, GuionBluford became the first black astronaut totravel into space.MilitarySergeant William H. Carney received theCongressional Medal of Honor for braveryduring the Civil War. During the battle at FortWagner, South Carolina, in 1863, Carney tookover the position of flag-bearer from a woundedsoldier, safely delivering the flag through thebattle. His deed is depicted on the Saint-Gaudens Monument in Boston, Massachusetts.SportsJackie Robinson became the first blackmajor league baseball player in 1947, when hejoined New York’s Brooklyn Dodgers. In 1962,Robinson also became the first AfricanAmerican to be elected to the Baseball Hall ofFame.William Carney17Audio Grammarhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Alphabet_Audio.html
  • 17. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netFEBRUARYBlack history month is one of themost widely-celebrated of federalmonths. It was originally established in1926 as Negro History Week by notedAfrican-American author and HarvardUniversity scholar, Dr. Carter G.Woodson. Dr. Woodson’s hope was thatthis special observance would remind allAmericans of their ethnic roots, and thatthe commemoration would increasemutual respect. In 1976 the celebrationwas expanded to include the entiremonth, and it became known as BlackHistory Month, also called AfricanAmerican History Month. The month ofFebruary was chosen since it contains thebirthdays of Abraham Lincoln andFrederick Douglas. Lincoln is honoredbecause of the EmancipationProclamation that freed the slaves, andDouglas is honored as one of the mostinfluential moral leaders, orators, andauthors of American history.One aim of Black History Month is toexpose the harmful effects of racialprejudice; another is to recognizesignificant contributions made by peoplewith African heritage, including artists,musicians, scientists, political figures,educators, and athletes. During February,cities, communities, and educationalestablishments feature speakers andcommunity events, often focusing on theCivil Rights Movement. In classrooms,the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King iscommonly a part of the curriculum.Dr. King focused his energy onorganizing peaceful protest demon-strations and marches, mostly in theAmerican southern states. He led thegreat march on Washington, D.C. in1963 where he gave his famous “I HaveA Dream” speech. Dr. King advocated anon-violent approach to social changefollowing the philosophy of MohandasGandhi. Another community activistwhose life is often a part of schoolcurricula is Rosa Parks. In 1955, RosaParks refused to surrender her seat onthe bus to a white passenger. By forcingthe police to remove her, and then arrestand imprison her, she brought nationalattention to the civil rights movement.This incident later became a test case forrepealing segregation laws.Glossarynoted: adj. importantroot(s): n. originmutual: adj. two or more people feelingthe same thing or doing the same thing toeach otherorator(s): n. a person who gives skillfulor effective public speechesexpose: v. to uncover; to allow to be seenfeature: v. to include as a special itemactivist: n. a person who actively worksfor a political party or for politicalchangesurrender: v. to give uprepeal(ing): v. to make a law no longerhave any legal force18Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 18. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netJANUARY/FEBRUARY – LUNAR YEARColorful banners announce an exhibition offoods for the celebration of the New Year.Gung Hay Fat Choy! This is theChinese greeting for the New Year; itmeans, “Wishing you luck andprosperity.” The New Year is one of themost important and festive Chineseholidays. In the United States, wheremore than 2.5 million people of Chinesedescent live, Chinese New Year’scelebrations provide an importantconnection to Chinese culture andheritage. Chinese immigrants brought thetraditions with them when they came toAmerica to work in gold mining campsand on the railroads in the mid-1800s.The Chinese New Year falls in lateJanuary or early February according tothe Chinese lunar calendar, andtraditionally lasts fifteen days endingwith the full moon.“May all your wishes come true” is the messageon this red money envelope.For the New Year, people decoratetheir homes with colorful pictures offlowers and fruits, and hang red papersquares or scrolls on which gold Chinesecharacters represent luck, happiness,prosperity, or health. Red is the color forChinese New Year as it represents goodluck. It also symbolizes fire, which issaid to drive away bad luck and evilspirits, particularly the legendarymonster, “nian.” People wear red for theNew Year, write poems and wishes on redpaper, and give red envelopes, called“laisee” packets, filled with “luckymoney” to children and young adults.Red firecrackers are also an essential partof Chinese New Year. From ancient timesto the present, Chinese people havewelcomed in the New Year and chasedaway the evil spirits by setting off fire-19Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 19. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netcrackers. Long ago people lit bamboostalks, which crackled and sparked toscare away spirits that could bring badluck to the year.On the night before the New Year,families and friends come together for aspecial meal, which includes Chinesefoods that represent happiness, health,and luck.On the final night of celebration isthe Feast of the Lantern, or “Yuen Sui.”The lanterns are beautifully painted withanimals, flowers and birds, or legendaryscenes. Traditionally, the glowinglanterns were carried in a procession andhung in the temples. The Feast of the Lantern includes a dragon dance, which isperformed by a huge, long dragon madeof paper, silk, bamboo, or rat tan. Thedragon is carried by many people as itdances through the streets chasing a red“sun-ball,” or a white “pearl-ball,” heldaloft by a parade participant. In theUnited States, the Feast of the Lantern isgenerally part of a larger parade thatoften occurs on the weekend closest tothe New Year.Today, Chinatowns in Americancities with large Chinese populations,such as New York and San Francisco,hold elaborate and lively New Year’scelebrations that attract hundreds ofthousands of participants and spectators.In San Francisco, Chinese New Yearis one of the largest Asian cultural eventsoutside of Asia. Huge crowds gather inthe streets of Chinatown to watch thefestive and noisy parade, which includesdecorated floats, musicians playingdrums and gongs, lion dancers with paperlion heads on sticks, marching bands,Chinese acrobats, martial arts groups, andmany firecrackers. At the end of theparade is a special Golden Dragon thatwas made by dragon masters in Foshan,China. The Golden Dragon is resplendentin gold and silver, fur, silk, paper, andrainbow-colored pompoms. It stretchesover 200 feet long and requires 100people to carry it. The dragon sways backand forth, twists and turns, jumps anddances amid the sparks and noise of over500,000 firecrackers!A Chinese New Year’s celebration is not completewithout a dragon weaving down the street.An important aspect of Chinese NewYear is the animal connected with thatyear. For example, the New Year may becalled, “The Year of the Horse” or “TheYear of the Dog.” The Chinese lunarcalendar, created in 2600 BC, has a 12-year cycle, and each year is associatedwith one of 12 animals on the Chinesecalendar. The animals are the rat, ox,tiger, hare, dragon, snake, horse, sheep,monkey, rooster, dog, and pig. It is saidthat when Buddha asked all the animalsto meet him on the New Year, thesetwelve animals came, and he named ayear for each one. People born in thatyear are said to embody thecharacteristics, both good and bad, of its20Stories With Audiohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Short_Stories_Audio.html
  • 20. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netanimal. The animal for the year ishonored and featured on posters andmany other items during New Year’scelebrations.Glossaryprosperity: n. wealth; abundancefestive: adj. lively; fundescent: n. family origin or lineheritage: n. one’s family, cultural, ornational back- groundlunar: adj. of or related to the moonscroll(s): n. long rolled paper containingwriting or pictureslegendary: adj. myths or stories told longagofirecracker(s): n. a small explosive setoff to make noise and a flash of lightancient: adj. from the past, beforewritten recordscrackle(d): v. to make a popping noise,often because of fire or flamespark(ed): v. to produce a flash of lightdue to heat, fire, or electricityscare away: v. to chase or frighten away;causing someone or an animal to runaway because of fear or surpriselantern: n. container from which light isemitted by a candle insideglowing: adj. bright, shining from aninner lightprocession: n. long moving line ofpeople, in a parade or ceremonydragon: n. a mythical animal depicted asa long snakelike creature with four clawsaloft: adv. above one’s head; highparade: n. a public procession or displayof people, animals and/or formationmoving in a single lineelaborate: adj. very detailed andbeautifulspectator(s): n. person who watches anevent or performancefloat(s): n. a platform carrying an exhibitusually pulled by a motorized vehicle(sometimes by animals or people) in aparadegong(s): n. metal disc which produces adeep musical toneresplendent: adj. spectacular and richlydecoratedfur: n. hair of an animalpompom(s): n. colored ball made of yarnor clothamid: adv. among; together withaspect: n. part; characteristicembody: v. to represent or contain fullycharacteristic(s): n. quality; trait; aspectfeature(d): v. to show prominently; topresent21FlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.html
  • 21. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netTHIRD MONDAY IN FEBRUARYMt. Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota features the colossal portraits of four presidents carvedfrom granite: George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln.This unit combines two birthdays:George Washington’s and AbrahamLincoln’s. The federal holiday is formallycalled “Washington’s Birthday” and iscelebrated on the third Monday inFebruary. However, we have titled thisunit “Presidents’ Day” since a commonpractice is to celebrate the birthdays ofboth presidents on this day. Some people,in fact, think the day celebrates all theAmerican presidents. The birthday ofGeorge Washington has been a legalfederal holiday since 1885, and wasoriginally celebrated on February 22.There was no federal holiday forAbraham Lincoln, but many individualstates celebrated Lincoln’s birthday onFebruary 12. In some states, bothFebruary 12 and February 22 weredeclared holidays to commemorate thetwo presidents. In 1968 Congress passedthe Uniform Holidays Act that fixedMonday as the official day to observelegal federal holidays, includingWashington’s Birthday. At this time,since many people assumed that the newdate was meant to combine the twopresidents’ birthdays, media sources and22Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 22. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netadvertisers began calling the day“Presidents’ Day.” Now, printedcalendars and date books indicate the dayas “Presidents’ Day,” and retail storeshold huge “Presidents’ Day Sales.”The White House has been the official home ofAmerican presidents since the year 1800.Despite the confusion surroundingthe holiday, the third Monday in Februaryis the day on which Americans are re-minded of the influence of both GeorgeWashington and Abraham Lincoln on thegrowth and history of the nation. As alegal holiday, federal and many state andlocal government offices are closed. Thetwo following sections discuss the livesand legacies of George Washington, thefirst president of the United States, andAbraham Lincoln, the sixteenth presidentof the United States.George Washington’sBirthdayGeorge Washington, the firstpresident of the United States ofAmerica, is often referred to as the“Father of Our Country.” Born February22, 1732, in Virginia, he grew to be anatural leader – instrumental in winningAmerican independence from Britain inthe Revolutionary War and creating aunited nation out of a conglomeration ofstruggling colonies and territories. As aboy, George helped manage his parents’plantation in Ferry Farm, Virginia. Heobserved the plantation’s black slaves atwork, and learned about planting andcrops. George attended school for only 7or 8years, and was especially interestedin math. His father wanted to send him toEngland for more education, but whenGeorge was elev en, his father died, andGeorge was unable to continue hisstudies.His interest in military life beganearly. At fourteen he longed to join theBritish Royal Navy, but his mother wouldnot give him permission. He then becameinterested in surveying, a profession inwhich he could apply his math skills andexplore the frontier as he mapped outnew settlements. Over the next fiveyears he became a master surveyor,laying the plans for many new towns andfarms. By 1750 he had also acquired over1,000 acres of land for himself.Shortly after his twentieth birthday,Washington began serving in the army ofKing George III of England, who ruledover the thirteen colonies and much ofthe surrounding territories. By twenty-two Washington was a lieutenant colonel23Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 23. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netand was put in command of a troop ofsoldiers who fought against the French inthe French and Indian War.While serving under the King,Washington grew resentful of the unfairtreatment of colonial soldiers andofficers, who received lower pay andpoorer supplies and training than regularBritish troops. When the King loweredthe ranks of all colonial officers,Washington resigned in anger. Later herejoined to learn military tactics from arenowned general.At the end of the French and IndianWar, Washington returned to Virginia andspent many years as a farmer,businessman, and Virginia legislator. In1759 he married Martha DandridgeCustis, a widow with two children.George Washington, as Commander in Chief ofthe Continental Army in 1775. led theinexperienced troops against the British forces.By the late 1760s, many colonistsbegan to want their freedom, and to liveunder their own rule, notunder the rule of a faraway king and aBritish militia. They felt that the taxes,laws, and punishments that the Kingimposed on them were unfair. In 1773, alocal rebellion against high taxes, calledthe Boston Tea Party, helped to spark theAmerican Revolution. In this rebellion,colonists raided British ships in BostonHarbor and tossed the cargo of tea intothe water. When the British closedBoston Harbor as punishment,Washington spoke out vehemently.In 1774, Washington attended thefirst Continental Congress where he andother representatives approved a tradeboycott of all British goods. Britaintightened its control over the colonies,and in 1775 the Revolutionary Warbegan. Washington was electedCommander in Chief of the ContinentalArmy. On July 4, 1776, the ContinentalCongress signed the Declaration ofIndependence, claiming America’sfreedom from British rule, but it wouldbe seven more years before thatindependence was won.Washington led the inexperiencedtroops of the Continental Army againstthe British forces during the harsh yearsof war, until the colonists prevailed andwon their independence in 1783. Historybooks recount the hardships of freezingwinters, lack of food, discouragement,and desertions during those years of war.They describe Washington’s strongleadership and determination that wereinstrumental in the eventual victory.In 1786, Washington was electedpresident of the Constitutional24Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 24. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netConvention, a meeting of representativesfrom each state to draft a constitution forthe new nation. Laws written into theConstitution called for a President, andGeorge Washington was considered thenatural choice. He was elected, andthough Washington was reluctant, heagreed to serve his country as the firstPresident of the United States. On April30, 1789, at the age of 57, Washingtonwas sworn into office. He moved fromMount Vernon in Virginia to New YorkCity, then the capital of the United States.The trip took a week by horse andcarriage. All along the way, peoplewaited eagerly to glimpse theRevolutionary War general and their firstPresident.Washington accepted two terms aspresident, but turned down a third termwishing only to retire to his beautifulfamily home, Mount Vernon. By the timeWashington left office, there were 16states in the Union, and the U.S. Capitolbuilding was being constructed in thenewly established District of Columbia.During his later years, Washingtonremained active in politics, and he diedon December 14, 1799. His memory isevident in the multitude of places in theUnited States that bear his name,including the United States Capitol,Washington, D.C.While Washington was alive, legendsgrew up about him. One legend says thathe was so strong, that he could throw asilver dollar across the Potomac River.Some Americans argue that this could bea true story, because parts of the PotomacRiver, they say, were extremely narrow afew hundred years ago! Another storytells of a time when George Washingtonwas young, and his father gave him ahatchet. Presumably, George tried to cutdown a cherry tree with it. His fathernoticed the cuts on the tree, and asked hisson how they got there. “I cannot tell alie,” George confessed. “I did it with myhatchet.” This story has never beenproven, but Americans pass it down totheir children as a lesson in honesty.George Washington came to representhonesty, and cherry pies have become afavorite food associated with his birthdayholiday.Americans began celebratingWashington’s birthday from the time ofthe Revolutionary War. They weregrateful for a strong leader who hadproven that democracy was a feasibleway to govern the growing country.Today, some communities observe theholiday by staging pageants andreenactments of important milestones inWashington’s life. Also, the holiday hastaken on a commercial side. Manyshopping malls and stores run Presidents’Day sales to attract shoppers who havethe day off from work or school.Abraham Lincoln’sBirthdayOf all the presidents in the history ofthe United States, Abraham Lincoln isprobably the one that Americansremember with deepest affection. Hischild- hood experiences set the course forhis character and motivation later in life.He brought a new level of honesty andintegrity to the White House, living up tohis nickname, “Honest Abe.” Most of all,he is associated with the final abolitionof slavery, with his Emancipation25Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html
  • 25. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netProclamation. Lincoln became a virtualsymbol of the American dream where-byan ordinary person from humblebeginnings could reach the pinnacle ofsociety as president of the country.Abraham Lincoln was born onFebruary 12, 1809, in Kentucky, andspent the first seven years of his lifethere. Abe’s family, like many on thefrontier, lived in a log cabin, and Abe’sfather worked hard as a farmer andcarpenter to support his family. Abe andhis sister were often occupied withhousehold chores, but when they werefree they attended a log schoolhouse.Young Abraham Lincoln became skilled at splitting logs, often used for houses, fences,and heating.In 1816, the family left Kentucky forIndiana, a state in the Midwest. TheUnited States at this time was still young,and the Midwest was a wild frontier.Indiana offered new opportunities anddiffered from Kentucky in many ways.One important difference for Abe’s fatherwas that Indiana was a state that did notallow slavery. Abe’s father was opposedto slavery, and instilled the same beliefsin his children.Abe and his family settled in a forest,in Spencer County, Indiana. Neighborswere few and far away. Eventually, Abe’sfather cleared enough land to build a logcabin. He and Abe cleared the woods forfarmland, and Abe became so skilled atsplitting logs that neighbors settling intothe territory paid him to split their logs.Drawings and other depictions of Lincolnas a young man often show him splittinglogs in a wooded setting.During his life, Abe had less than oneyear of formal schooling. This lack ofeducation only made him hungry formore knowledge. His mother, NancyHanks Lincoln, influenced him in hisquest for learning. Although she wasuneducated and could not read or write,she encouraged her children to study bythemselves. Later, after his mother diedand his father remarried, Abe’s step-mother was also instrumental inencouraging him to read. Abe would eventravel to neighboring farms and countiesto borrow books. Legend claims that hewas often found reading next to a pile oflogs that he should have been splitting.Even as a boy Lincoln showed skillas a speaker. He noticed that peopleloved to listen to stories, and he begantelling tall tales in the general storewhere people often gathered.In 1830 the family moved again, thistime to Illinois. Lincoln began working ina store in the capital of Spring-field. Hispowers of speech soon helped him enter a26Free English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.html
  • 26. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netnew arena, that of politics and law. In1834 he was elected into the Illinois StateLegislature, and began studying tobecome a lawyer. There were few lawschools in those days, so Lincoln studiedlaw from books that he borrowed from anattorney. He received his license topractice law in 1836. In 1839, he met hisfuture wife Mary Todd. After a longcourtship, they married in November1842, and eventually had four boys.Lincoln practiced law all across thestate, traveling far on horseback and bybuggy to different counties. He becamewell known during this time for hisability to argue a strong convincing caseand for his honesty. These experienceseventually led him down the road tobecome the sixteenth president of theUnited States.In 1847 he was elected into Congress,but his criticism of then President Polkmade him unpopular, and he did not runfor a second term.He returned to his law practice, butcontinued to present his views publicly.He was vehemently against slavery andtook stands on other controversialissues.Within a few years, slavery hadbecome a stronger issue and more peoplewere willing to abolish it. Lincoln joinedthe Republicans, a new political partythat was opposed to slavery. TheRepublicans nominated him for the U.S.Senate in 1858, and in his acceptancespeech, he stated:A house divided against itselfcannot stand...This government cannot endure,permanently half-slave and half-free... I do not expect the Union to bedissolved. I do not expect the houseto fall – but I do expect it will ceaseto be divided.Abraham Lincoln’s oratoricalpowers brought him to the attention ofthe nation. He challenged his opponent,the Democratic nominee, to a series ofdebates in which he argued the moral evilof slavery. With the simple language thathe used to communicate with people allhis life, he defeated his opponent in thedebates, but lost the election.However, the debates had madeLincoln a national figure, and in 1860, hewas nominated by the Republican Partyas its candidate for the Presidency of theUnited States. Lincoln won the electionwith a majority of the electoral votes –all from the north. But with this election,the country began the process of“dividing against itself.” South Carolina,a strong slave state, had already secededfrom the Union. Other slave statesfollowed to form the Confederate Statesof America. The North and South weredivided, and the Civil War began. Thewar was not only about the abolition ofslavery, but also the right of individualstates to make their own laws on otherkey issues.As the nation was approaching thethird year of the war, on January 1, 1863,Abraham Lincoln issued theEmancipation Proclamation, which statedthat all persons who had been slaveswithin the southern states were free.Though this Proclamation was limited inthat it only applied to states that hadseceded from the Union, it transformedthe focus of the war. From then on, themarch from the North was equated withan expansion of freedom.27Free LSL English Grammar Speaking Drill Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Drill_Book_PDF.html
  • 27. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netLincoln is best known for his Emancipation Proclamation, issued January 1, 1863,that changed the character of the Civil War.28Skype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 28. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netTHE GETTYSBURG ADDRESSNOVEMBER 19, 1863Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation,conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.Now we are engaged in a great civil war testing whether that nation or any nation soconceived and so dedicated can long endure. We are met on a great battlefield of that war. Wehave come to dedicate a portion of that field as a final resting place for those who here gavetheir lives that that nation may live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate – we can not consecrate – we can not hallow –this ground. The brave men living and dead who struggled here have consecrated it far aboveour poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we sayhere but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living rather to be dedicated hereto the unfinished work, which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It israther for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us – that from thesehonored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last fullmeasure of devotion – that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain –that this nation under God shall have a new birth of freedom – and that government of thepeople, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.The Battle of Gettysburg inPennsylvania in 1863 was one of thebloodiest of the Civil War, and the largestbattle ever fought on American soil. OnNovember 19, 1863, a ceremony washeld to dedicate the Gettysburgbattlefield as a national monument. Atthat ceremony Lincoln delivered whatwas to become one of the finest speechesin American history, the GettysburgAddress. After Lincoln’s short speechthere was a polite, but reserved applause.The main speaker of the day was EdwardEverett, ex-governor of Massachusetts,who delivered a two-hour oration. As thetwo speakers returned to Washingtontogether, Lincoln expresseddisappointment in his own presentation.“I was a flat failure,” he said of hisspeech. “I ought to have prepared it withmore care.” But Everett reassured him,saying, “I would be glad if...I came nearto the central idea of the occasion in twohours as you did in two minutes.”On April 9, 1865, the Southsurrendered, and the Civil War ended.The Union army soldiers spread the wordof the war’s end and of Lincoln’sEmancipation Proclamation. The difficulttask of national reconstruction andreconciliation lay ahead, but Lincolnwould not be the person to lead thecountry through this difficult period. OnApril 14, Mr. and Mrs. Lincoln wereattending a play at Ford’s Theater inWashington, D.C. An actor, John WilkesBooth, who disagreed with Lincoln’spolitical opinions, stepped into thepresidential box and shot the President.Lincoln died the following morning.Quotation from Lincoln“...As I would not be a slave, so Iwould not be a master. This expressesmy idea of democracy. Whateverdiffers from this, to the extent of thedifference, is no democracy.”Letter, August 185829IELTS Test Preparationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/IELTS_Test_Preparation_Plus.html
  • 29. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netPresidents’Day celebrates the birthdays ofGeorge Washington (February 22)and Abraham Lincoln (February 12).Glossary(George Washington’s Birthday)federal: adj. of or relating to the nationalgovernment, for example, a federalholiday is a holiday declared by thenational governmentlegacy(ies): n. the good works that aperson or group did that survive longafter the person or group has leftinstrumental: adj. influential; veryimportant conglomeration: n. a mixtureor collection of dissimilar thingscolony(ies): n. a group of people living ina new territory with strong ties or links totheir parent country; the link is usually atthe level of the governmentterritory(ies): n. a geographic area orsubdivision of land that is under thejurisdiction or rule of a government, butis not a full part of that government’scountry, e.g., Puerto Rico is a territory ofthe U.S.plantation: n. a farm or estate on whichcrops such as tobacco or sugar arecultivated by resident laborerssurveying: n. a field of work thatinvolves measuring and mapping landfrontier: n. wilderness; unsettled, openlandssettlement(s): n. a village or town wherepeople have established a newcommunityrank(s): n. position or level within themilitary, e.g. general; captain; sergeantresign(ed): v. to quit a job or positiontactic(s): n. strategy; planned methodrenown(ed): adj. well-known; famouswidow: n. a woman whose husband hasdiedimpose(d): v. to place on, such as a ruleor lawrebellion: n. opposition to authority;revolutionspark: v. to cause to set in motion;suddenlyraid(ed): v. to attack suddenly andwithout warningvehement(ly): adv. strongly, with angerboycott: n. a refusal to buy or use certaingoods or services as an action of protestprevail(ed): v. to triumph; to bevictoriousdesertion(s): n. abandonment; leaving aresponsibility, often without warning orpermissionreluctant: adj. not willing; hesitantswear into: v. phrase. to take an oathbefore beginning an official position; beinauguratedglimpse: v. to see brieflyUnion: n. refers to the United Statesmultitude: n. a large number of; manyhatchet: n. a tool to cut woodpresumably: adv. assumption or beliefthat something is true confess(ed): v. totell or admit wrong doingfeasible: adj. possible; workable;practicalpageant(s): n. parades and plays for aspecial event30Speaking Practice Prohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Speaking_Practice_Pro.html
  • 30. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netreenactment(s): n. performance ofhistorical eventsmilestone(s): n. significant event inhistory or a person’s lifeGlossary(Abraham Lincoln’s Birthday)affection: n. fondness; a deep, warm,good feelingmotivation: n. incentive; something thatpushes you toward a goalintegrity: n. correct morals and behaviorabolition: n. an ending or termination of,by lawEmancipation Proclamation: n. thegovernment document that officiallyproclaimed or stated American slaves tobe freevirtual: adj. truepinnacle: n. highest pointchore(s): n. regular or daily work,usually in a household or on a farmlog schoolhouse: n. phrase. a one-roomschool made of wooden logs (cut andcleaned tree trunks)instill(ed): v. to give an idea or principleby example or teachingsplit(ting) logs: v. phrase. to divide a logor length of tree trunk lengthwisequest: n. a searchinstrumental: adj. influential; veryimportantlegend: n. a popular myth or story aboutsomeone or some event in the past; notverifiabletall tale(s): n. a story that is untrue orexaggeratedlegislature: n. an organized body of thegovernment with the authority to makelawscourtship: n. the act of dating, or actionsto attract a mate for marriage or unioncriticism: n. the act of making acomment (written or oral) of evaluation,usually negativevehemently: adv. strongly, with angercontroversial: adj. causing disagreementabolish: v. to end, stop, finishissue(s): n. a topic or matter of discussiondissolve(d): v. to break apartoratorical: adj. speaking; having to dowith public speakingnominee: n. a person who has beenproposed for officeelectoral vote(s): n. votes from theElectoral College which elects thePresident and Vice President of the U.S.Each state appoints as many electors as ithas senators and representatives inCongress; the District of Columbia hasthree votes. Though pledged to vote fortheir state’s winners, electors are notconstitutionally obliged 2) to do so. Acandidate must win more than 50% of thevotes to win the election. (from theonline Encyclopedia Britannica:http://www.britannica.com/ebc/article-9363529)secede(d): v. to withdraw from anorganization or group oration: n. speechreconstruction: n. rebuildingreconciliation: n. forgiveness; settling aproblem31Free English Clubhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_Russian_Club.html
  • 31. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netMARCH-AUGUSTA member of the Plains Cree tribe works on hiscostume of eagle feathers at the Gathering ofNations powwow in Albuquerque, New Mexicoon April 25, 1998. This annual event featuresmore than 700 tribes from the United States andCanada .A powwow is a large social gatheringof native american tribes and individuals.Every year, hundreds of powwows occuron Native American reservations and inother locations across the nation fromMarch through August. Powwows arelively occasions that include tribal danceand dance competitions, drumming,singing, Indian foods, art, crafts,educational events, presentations, and insome areas, a rodeo. Despite the festiveatmosphere, powwows are also spiritualoccasions that involve rituals, blessings,and respectful protocol. These are timesfor Native Americans to strengthen tiesof culture, community and tradition, andto celebrate heritage and history.The word “pow-wow” comes from anAlgonquin Indian word “pau-wau” or“pauau,” which referred to tribalspiritual leaders and their religious andhealing ceremonies. The ceremoniesusually included dancing and rituals,which were sometimes seen by earlyEuropean settlers and explorers. Becausethey did not understand Indian culture orceremonies, they thought a “pow-wow,”– their mispronunciation of the Indianword – was any tribal gathering or event.Eventually the Anglicized word be camecommonly used, even among NativeAmericans. Now, the word “powwow”and the event itself have come to signifyand embody the spirit and continuity ofNative American cultures and people.Two of the most essential features ofa powwow are traditional dancing anddrumming. At the start of a powwow, aDance Arbor is set up and blessed in aritual way. After this, the Dance Arbor isconsidered sacred space, and may beentered only by designated individualsfor dancing and other special ceremony.Dancers, wearing elaborate regalia,perform traditional dances, or participatein dance competitions, vying for tophonors and prize money.32English Course Informationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Lessons_Information.html
  • 32. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIndian tribal dresses incorporate elaboratebeadwork.The regalia worn by dancers aremeticulously made, and may take yearsto complete. The designs and elementsused may represent the dancer’s tribalaffiliation, or combine features of othertribes. The outfit often includes valuablefamily heirlooms and sacred items suchas feathers, for which there are specificrules and protocol. Some of the dancerswear bells on their wrists and ankles,which add a jingling rhythm to thedance. Others, with fancy shawls, looklike delicate flying birds as they raisetheir arms to the beat of the drums. Grassdancers wear outfits of brightly-coloredyarn or fabric representing meadowgrass.The dancers are accompanied by agroup of five to ten singers, collectivelycalled “a drum.” They sit around a largedrum, which they beat in unison as theysing. Some singers may also standbehind. Traditionally all singers anddrummers were male, but today manywomen sing and drum, and some groupsare all female. Many of the songs do nothave words, but consist entirely ofsyllables, called “vocables,” whichconvey the deep feeling and meaning ofthe song. Songs are sung four times insuccession, as the number four is sacredto Indian culture and represents the fourdirections. The drumming and singing arethe core of the powwow, providing arhythmic pulse to the event.Traditional dancing and drumming are essentialto a powwow. Above, drummers lead out thedancers in the 32nd annual Pow Wow March onMarch 24, 2006 in Denver, Colorado.Until the 20th century, non-Indiansusually did not participate in powwows.But today, powwows are public eventsand open to all, providing an opportunityfor Native Americans to share theirculture and traditions. Non-Indians canenjoy the festivities, try new foods suchas “Indian fry bread,” purchase beautifulhandmade goods like jewelry of silverand turquoise, finely crafted drums andflutes, pottery, painted gourds, andtraditional clothing. They can participatein some events and dances such as theRound Dance or Blanket Dance. Andthey can learn about the rich heritageand present day lives of America’s firstinhabitants.33Grammar Reviewhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Review.html
  • 33. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThe spirit of the powwow is acontinuum in Indian life. It isn’t justfor a few days in March. We live thisspirit on a daily basis. It is why wehave survived for so long. At onetime we were a forgotten people, butI think we are getting stronger. Fromthe powwow we gain strength asIndian people, individually andcollectively, to go on into the [next]century. – Linday Yardley TaosPueblo IndianChildren as well as adults often don costumes forpowwows. Here, a 9-year-old boy dances whiledressed in traditional garb in Upper SiouxAgency State Park near Granite Falls, Minnesotaon August 7, 2004 .Glossaryreservation(s): n. a tract or parcel of landset aside for the use of a group or groupssuch as the Native American tribeslively: adj. active, fun, festiverodeo: n. a public performance and/orcompetition featuring such activities ashorse riding, bull riding, and calf ropingspiritual: adj. relating to or affecting thespirit, often in a deeply religious senseritual(s): n. symbolic gestures to showrespect, thanks, prayer, or blessingprotocol: n. a set of customs andregulationsheritage: n. family, cultural, or ethnicbackground or linehealing: n. an action or activity meant torestore to healthAnglicize(d): adj. made more English-like in spelling, pronunciation, custom, ormannerembody: v. to represent or contain fullyarbor: n. archway or other overheadstructuresacred: adj. holy; highly respected,usually in a religious sensedesignate(d): v. appointed; chosen for aspecific purpose or taskelaborate: adj. beautifully decorated;complex in detailregalia: n. special clothing or outfit wornfor ceremonial purposesvie(-ying): v. to try for or compete formeticulously: adv. in a very careful anddetailed manneraffiliation: n. association; connectionheirloom: n. cherished family treasure,such as jewelry, that is passed down fromgeneration to generationjingle(-ing): adj. like the sound of a bellshawl(s): n. long piece of cloth used forcovering one’s shouldersyarn: n. thread made of natural orsynthetic fiberscollectively: adv. together as a groupunison: n. having one voice or sound insuccession: prep. phrase. one afteranother; repeatedlycore: n. center; central part pulse: n. beat;heartbeatturquoise: n. semi-precious stone of paleor dark green- blue, often used in NativeAmerican jewelrygourd(s): n. vegetable related to thepumpkin that is dried, hollowed, andsometimes decoratedinhabitant(s): n. person who lives in aspecific area34Free Trial Lessonhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 34. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIN WOMENS HISTORYJeanette RankinGovernmentIn 1916, Jeannette Rankin was the firstwoman elected to the U.S. House ofRepresentatives. She served another term from1941 to 1943. A lifelong pacifist, Rankin votedagainst going to war with Germany in 1917(World War I), and was the only representativeto vote against the U.S. entering World War II.Science and medicineAfter being the first woman admitted to theMassachusetts Institute of Technology, EllenSwallow Richards also became the firstprofessional chemist in the US after hergraduation in 1873.Literature and PublishingEdith Wharton became the first woman towin a Pulitzer Prize for fiction in 1921 for hernovel The Age of Innocence. Wharton did notbegin her writing career until she was almost 40years old, and through her career published over40 books.FilmIn 1896, Alice Guy Blache became the firstAmerican female film director with the releaseof her film The Cabbage Fairy. During hercareer she directed over 300 short films.Ellen Richards35Audio Grammarhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Alphabet_Audio.html
  • 35. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAmelia EarhartMusicIn 1914, Mary Davenport-Engberg becamethe first woman to conduct a symphonyorchestra in the United States.Air and SpaceIn 1932, Amelia Earhart became the firstwoman to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.She flew from Harbor Grace, Newfoundland, toIreland in about 15 hours. In 1937 Earhartattempted to fly around the world, but her planedisappeared. No one knows what happened toher.MilitaryIn 1993, Sheila Widnall was appointedSecretary of the Air Force, becoming the firstwoman to hold this high-level position for anybranch of the U.S. military.SportsIn 1967, Althea Gibson became the firstwoman (and African American) to win thetennis singles title at Wimbledon. During hercareer, Gibson won ten straight national blackwomen’s singles championships, and, in 1971,she was inducted into the National Lawn TennisHall of Fame.Althea Gibson36Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 36. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netMARCHWomen’s history month is one of theoutcomes of a countrywide movement inSonoma County, California, in the 1970sthat brought a focus on women intoschool curricula as well as into thegeneral public’s consciousness. In 1978,the Educational Task Force of theSonoma County (California) Commissionon the Status of Women initiated a“Women’s History Week.” The week ofMarch 8 was chosen since March 8 isInternational Women’s Day. As word ofthe movement spread, State Departmentsof Education across the U.S. initiatedsimilar changes to their curricula, andencouraged celebrations of women’shistory as a means of achieving equity inclassrooms. In 1987 the NationalWomen’s History Project petitioned theUnited States Congress to recognize thewhole month of March as NationalWomen’s History Month. Since then,every year the House of Representativesand the United States Senate approve thedesignation.March is celebrated with specialprograms and activities in schools,workplaces, and communities. Besidesrecognizing women’s achievements insuch areas as science, math, politics, arts,and athletics, a common topic in schoolcurricula is the women’s suffragemovement in the United States. Before1920, women did not have the right tovote under the constitution. In the decadebetween 1910 and 1920, womenorganized and were involved in politicaldemonstrations and marches across theUnited States. Though the vote wasbrought to the congress several times, itfailed to pass. Finally in 1919, after yearsof picketing, petitioning, and protesting,the vote passed, resulting in the passageof the Nineteenth Amendment to theU.S. Constitution on August 26, 1920. InNovember 1920, women voted for thefirst time in a national election.Glossaryoutcome(s): n. a result or the effect of anactionconsciousness: n. knowledge orawarenessinitiate(d): v. to beginequity: n. justice or fairnessdesignation: n. something chosen for aparticular reason or purposesuffrage: n. the right to vote in anelectionright: n. a legal claimdecade: n. a period of ten yearspicket(ing): v. to stand or demonstrateoutside a building or place of work toprevent people from entering andworking, as a means of political protestpetition(ing): v. to demand or requestsome action from a government or otherauthorityamendment: n. a change in a law37Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 37. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIN ASIAN PACIFIC AMERICAN HISTORYDalip Singh SaundGovernmentRepresenting California in 1956, DalipSingh Saund became the first Asian-AmericanU.S. Representative.Science and medicineIn 1957, Tsung-Dao Lee and Chen NingYang became the first Asian-Americans to winthe Nobel Prize for physics. They were awardedthe prize for disproving a quantum-physics law.Literature and PublishingIn 1974, both Ken Kashiwahara and ConnieChung became the first Asian-Americannetwork news reporters. In 1993, Chung alsobecame the first Asian-American news anchor(main reporter) for a major television station.FilmIn 1921, Anna May Wong became the firstwidely recognized Asian-American film star. In1951, she also became the first Asian-Americanto have her own television series, “The Galleryof Madame Liu Tsong.”Anna May Wong38Stories With Audiohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Short_Stories_Audio.html
  • 38. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netCalvin ChinAir and SpaceIn 1932, Katherine Sui Fun Cheung becamethe first licensed Asian-American aviator. As aco-member of the woman-only aviation “99-Club” (headed by Amelia Earhart), Cheungparticipated in numerous aerial performancesand races, eventually retiring from aviation afteran accident destroyed her plane.MilitaryIn 1944, Calvin Chin and Anthony LooWong became the first Chinese Americans to becommissioned as second lieutenants (officers),after graduating from the MedicalAdministrative Corps Officer Candidate Schoolat Camp Barkeley, Texas.SportsIn 1948, Richard Tom became the firstAsian-American to win an Olympic medal. Hereceived the Bronze Medal for weightlifting.Anthony Loo Wong39FlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.html
  • 39. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netMAYMuch like Black History Month andWomen’s History Month, Asian PacificAmerican Heritage Month originatedwith a congressional bill. TwoRepresentatives introduced the bill to theHouse of Representatives and twosenators introduced the bill to the Senate.Both of them passed, and U.S. PresidentJimmy Carter officially recognizedAsian/Pacific Heritage Week on October5, 1978. Several years later, in May 1990,President George H. W. Bush expanded itto a month, and designated it as AsianPacific Heritage Month. The month ofMay was chosen in honor of the arrivalof the first Japanese immigrants to theUnited States on May 7, 1843 and alsothe completion of the transcontinentalrailroad on May 10, 1869.May is celebrated with communityevents that involve historical,educational, and cultural activities, andthe recognition of famous AsianAmericans in such fields as architecture,entertainment, athletics, education, art,and science. One historical period oftendiscussed in school curricula in May isthe building of the first railroad thatspanned the American continent. Thisrailroad, largely built by Chineseimmigrants, is considered one of thecrowning achievements of PresidentAbraham Lincoln, even though it wascompleted four years after his death. Tobuild the railroad, the Union PacificRailroad began in Nebraska, and workedwestward through Colorado andWyoming to Utah. At the same time, theCentral Pacific Railroad began inCalifornia, and moved eastward throughNevada to Utah, carving out places forrailroad tracks in high mountain peaks.The two railroad companies met in thetown of Promontary, Utah, where theydrove in the final “golden spike” thatbrought together the east and west coastsof the American continent. This featrevolutionized the economy andpopulation of the U.S. It caused thewagon trains to be obsolete, andaffected commerce, trade, and travelacross the continent.Glossarycongressional: adj. of an elected group ofrepresentativesbill: n. a proposed law in governmentdesignate(d): v. to officially choose for aparticular reason or purposetranscontinental: adj. extending across acontinentspan(ned): v. to cross the length betweentwo pointslargely: adv. mostly; almost completelycrown(ing): adj. greatestdrive: v. to provide the power to makesomething happen; to pound inspike: n. a narrow thin shape with a pointon one end, usually metalfeat: n. an action that involves risk ordifficultywagon train: n. a group or line of vehicleswith four wheels, pulled by animalsobsolete: adj. not in use anymore becausesomething more modern has replaced itaffect(ed): v. to cause to change40Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 40. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netLAST MONDAY IN MAYFlowers and wreaths are placed on graves inmemory of loved ones who have died in war.It was 1866, and the united states wasrecovering from the long and bloodycivil war between the north (union) andthe south (confederate). Survivingsoldiers came home, some with missinglimbs, and all with stories to tell. HenryWelles, a drug-store owner in Waterloo,New York, heard the stories and had anidea. He suggested that all the shops intown close for one day to honor thesoldiers who were buried in the Waterloocemetery. On the morning of May 5, thetownspeople placed flowers, wreaths,and crosses on the graves of the northernsoldiers in the cemetery.In the South, women’s organizationswere also honoring the war dead,decorating the graves of southern soldierswho had died in the war. In many townsand cities there was a growing movementto honor the war dead with a special day.So in 1868, General Jonathan Logan,commander of the Grand Army of theRepublic, established May 30 as theofficial day of observance to honor allthose who had given their lives in serviceof their country. The day was calledDecoration Day.In 1868 General Jonathan Logan establishedMay 30 as the official day of observance, notonly as a memorial but also as a day ofreconciliation. Flowers are placed on graves ofthose who have lost their lives in wars.In General Logan’s proclamation ofDecoration Day, he declared:The 30th of May, 1868, is41Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 41. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netdesignated for the purpose ofstrewing with flowers, or otherwisedecorating the graves of comradeswho died in defense of their countryand during the late rebellion, andwhose bodies now lie in almost everycity, village and hamlet churchyardin the land. In this observance noform of ceremony is prescribed, butposts and comrades will in their ownway arrange such fitting servicesand testimonials of respect ascircumstances may permit.The day was to be a memorial, andwas intended also to be a day ofreconciliation, as flowers were placed onthe graves of both Union andConfederate soldiers in ArlingtonCemetery.In a typical Decoration Dayceremony in the North, veterans wouldmarch through the town to the cemeteryto decorate their comrades’ graves withflags. They took photographs of soldiersnext to American flags. Rifles were shotin the air as a salute to the northernsoldiers who had given their lives to keepthe United States together. Children readpoems and sang civil war songs andhymns. Veterans came to the schoolswearing their medals and uniforms to tellstudents about the Civil War.In 1882, the name was changed fromDecoration Day to Memorial Day, tohonor soldiers who had died in allprevious wars – not only the Civil War. Inthe northern States, it was designated alegal holiday. The southern stateshonored their war dead on other daysuntil the end of World War I.After World War I, Memorial Daywas also called Poppy Day because ofMoina Michael’s idea to wear redpoppies on the day, in honor of those whohad died in the war. She was inspired byJohn McCrae’s poem, “In FlandersFields,” which speaks of the bright redpoppies that grow among the graves onformer battlefields in Belgium. Her saleof poppies on Memorial Day benefitedmilitary men in need. The traditioneventually spread to other countries,where real or artificial poppies were soldto benefit war orphans. Since 1922, theVFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars)organization in the United States has soldpaper poppies, made by disabledveterans, on Memorial Day.After World War I, Memorial Day was also calledPoppy Day, and bright red poppies were worn inhonor of those who had died in that war.In 1966, President Lyndon Johnsonproclaimed Waterloo, New York thebirthplace of Memorial Day. In 1971,42Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 42. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netPresident Richard Nixon declaredMemorial Day a national holiday, to beobserved on the last Monday in May.Cities all around the United States holdtheir own ceremonies on this day to payrespect to the men and women who havedied in wars or in the service of theircountry.Today, Memorial Day is also a dayfor personal remembrance. Families andindividuals honor the memory of theirloved ones who have died. Churchservices, visits to the cemetery, flowerson graves, or even silent tributes markthe day with dignity and solemnity. It isa day of reflection. Memorial Day oftencoincides with the end of the school year,so to many Americans the day alsosignals the beginning of summer – with athree-day weekend to spend at the beach,in the mountains, or at home relaxing.Arlington NationalCemetery Arlington NationalCemetery in Virginia is the nation’slargest national cemetery. Buried therewith a special place of honor aremembers of the armed forces, as well asastronauts, explorers, and otherdistinguished Americans. President JohnF. Kennedy is buried in a spotoverlooking Washington, D.C., andmarked with an eternal flame.In the early hours of the morning, onthe Friday before Memorial Day, soldiersof the Third U.S. Infantry walk along therows of headstones. Each soldier stops ata headstone, salutes, takes one flag fromthe bundle of flags he or she is carrying,and pushes it into the ground. Thesesoldiers are part of a special regiment, theOld Guard, and they consider it aprivilege to place flags on the more thantwo hundred thousand graves of soldierswho served and died in wars. “They havedone their job,” said one soldier, “andnow it’s my turn to do mine.”It is an equal honor to guard theTomb of the Unknowns. Four unknownsoldiers have been buried in this spot:one soldier from each of the two WorldWars, one from the Korean conflict, andone from the Vietnam War. Each of thesesoldiers represents all of those who gavetheir lives in the modern wars. Onanother hill of Arlington Cemetery, thereis a mass grave of unidentified soldiersfrom the Civil War. On Memorial Day,the President or Vice President of theUnited States gives a speech and lays awreath on the Tomb of the Unknowns.Members of the armed forces give a riflesalute. At other tombs, veterans andfamilies come to lay their own wreathsand say prayers.Glossaryrecover(ing): v. to get well after anillness, disaster, or injurylimb(s): n. arm or leghonor: v. to remember or recognize withrespect and thankscemetery: n. graveyard; place of burialwreath(s): n. ring or circle of leaves orflowers used for decoration orcommemorationdecorate(ing): v. to furnish or cover withsomething ornamental, such as to placeflowers on a graveproclamation: n. an official or publicannouncementdesignate(d): v. to specify; assignstrew(ing): v. to throw around lightlyrebellion: n. revolution or uprisinghamlet: n. small town; village43Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html
  • 43. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netchurchyard: n. the ground around achurch, often used as a graveyardprescribe(d): v. to give guidance or arule or a directionpost(s): n. military camp or fortfitting: adj. appropriatetestimonial(s): n. formal statement ordeclaration of value or merit; words ofpraisememorial: n. ceremony or monument tohonor the memory of a person who hasdied or an historical eventreconciliation: n. the act of restoringharmony or a resolution of differencesveteran(s): n. member of the armedforces, now retired or dischargedcomrade(s): n. good friend; a colleaguesalute: n. gesture of honor or respectpoppy(-ies): n. a species of flowerknown for its bright red or scarlet flowersorphan(s): n. a child whose parents havedied or have abandoned the childdisable(d): adj. having limited abilitydue to an injury or physical abnormalitypay respect: v. phrase. honortribute: n. statement of praise andrespectdignity: n. self-respect; nobleness ofmannersolemnity: n. seriousnessreflection: n. deep thoughtsignal(s): v. to indicate; to markheadstone(s): n. stone marker for burialplacesprivilege: n. special rightmass: adj. pertaining to large numbers orquantities; not separatedunidentified: adj. having no name oridentity44Free English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.html
  • 44. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netMAY AND JUNEThis reading includes a description ofthe two most celebrated family days:Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. ThoughNational Grandparents’ Day andInternational Children’s Day also exist,they are not as widely celebrated in theUnited States as Mother’s Day andFather’s Day.Mother’s DayOn Mother’s Day children of all ages make theday a special one for their mothers.On the second Sunday in May,American children of all ages treat theirmothers to something special. It is theday when children, young and old, try toshow, in a tangible way, how much theyappreciate their mothers, or those whohave served as mother figures in theirlives.England was one of the first countriesto set aside a day to recognize mothers.In the eighteenth century when manypeople worked as household servants forthe rich, “Mothering Sunday” wasreserved for them to return home to bewith their mothers. Though this customchanged when the Industrial Revolutionaltered people’s working and livingpatterns, mothers in England are stillhonored with a special day in March.In the United States, the idea ofMother’s Day was first introduced in1872 by Julia Ward Howe, a famouswriter and social reformer of the time.However, the establishment of an officialday to honor mothers was due largely tothe perseverance and love of onedaughter, Anna Jarvis. Anna’s mother hadprovided strength and sup port as thefamily made their home in West Virginiaand then Philadelphia, Pennsylvania,where Anna’s father served as a minister.As a girl, Anna had helped her mothertake care of her garden, filled mostlywith white carnations, her mother’sfavorite flower. When Mrs. Jarvis died onMay 5, 1905, Anna was determined tohonor her. She asked the minister at herformer church in West Virginia to give asermon in her mother’s memory. On thesame Sunday, their minister inPhiladelphia also honored Mrs. Jarvis,45Free LSL English Grammar Speaking Drill Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Drill_Book_PDF.html
  • 45. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netand all mothers, with a special Mother’sDay service. Anna Jarvis began writingto members of congress, asking them toset aside a day to honor mothers. In 1910,the governor of West Virginiaproclaimed the second Sunday in May asMother’s Day. A year later, every statewas celebrating it, and in 1914 PresidentWoodrow Wilson declared the firstnational Mother’s Day.Anna Marie Jarvis was successful in her effortsto set aside a day to honor mothers.On Mother’s Day morning, someAmerican children follow the tradition ofserving their mothers breakfast in bed.Other children will give their mothersgifts that they have made themselves orbought in stores. Adults also give theirmothers cards, gifts, and flowers – oftenred carnations, the official Mother’s Dayflower. If their mothers are deceased,they may bring white carnations or otherflowers to their gravesites. Mother’s Dayis the busiest day of the year forAmerican restaurants. On her special day,family members do not want Mom tohave to cook dinner!Fathers DayA new dad comforts his baby.The United States is one of the fewcountries in the world that has an officialday on which fathers are honored by theirchildren. On the third Sunday in June,fathers, and all men who act as fatherfigures, all across the United States aregiven presents, treated to dinner, orotherwise made to feel special.The origin of Father’s Day is notclear. Some say that it began with achurch service in West Virginia in 1908.Others say the first Father’s Day washeld in Vancouver, Washington. Another46Skype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 46. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netstory claims that the president of theChicago Lions’ Club, Harry Meek,celebrated the first Father’s Day with hisorganization in 1915, choosing the thirdSunday in June, the date closest to hisbirthday!Regardless of when the first Father’sDay occurred, the strongest promoter ofthe holiday was Sonora Smart Dodd ofSpokane, Washington. She thought of theidea of a Father’s Day while she waslistening to a Mother’s Day sermon. Mrs.Dodd felt that she had an outstandingfather. He was a veteran of the CivilWar. His wife had died young, and he hadraised six children alone, without theirmother. When Mrs. Dodd became anadult she recognized with greatappreciation the sacrifices her fatherhad made, and the remarkable job he haddone as a single parent.In 1909, Mrs. Dodd approached herminister and others in Spokane abouthaving a church service dedicated tofathers on June 5, her father’s birthday.That date was too soon for her ministerto prepare the service, so he presented ita few weeks later on June 19th. Fromthen on, the state of Washingtoncelebrated the third Sunday in June asFather’s Day. Children made specialdesserts, or visited their fathers if theylived apart.States and organizations beganlobbying Congress to declare an annualFather’s Day. In 1916, PresidentWoodrow Wilson approved of this idea,but it was not until 1924 that PresidentCalvin Coolidge made it a national event.He declared that the official recognitionof Father’s Day was to “establish moreintimate relations between fathers andtheir children and to impress uponfathers the full measure of theirobligations.” Since then, fathers havebeen honored and recognized by theirfamilies throughout the country on thethird Sunday in June. In 1966, PresidentLyndon Johnson signed a presidentialproclamation making Father’s Day anational commemorative day.This Father’s Day gift tie is accompanied by alovingly-written note.When children can’t visit theirfathers, they usu ally contact them bytelephone or email, or they may send agreeting card. The cards might betraditional and sentimental, orwhimsical so fathers laugh when theyopen them. Father’s Day gifts may bestore bought or hand-made, andtraditional gifts might include a tie, shirt,sports item, or a child’s own drawing.Some children give their fathers heartfeltthanks for always being there when theyneeded “Dad.”47IELTS Test Preparationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/IELTS_Test_Preparation_Plus.html
  • 47. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netGlossary(Mother’s Day)tangible: adj. concrete; something whichcan be seen or heldmother figure: n. phrase. person whoacts as a mother in a child’s life such as agrandmother, stepmother, aunt, sister,good friendhousehold: adj. relating to the homehonor(ed): v. to remember with respectand thanksreformer: n. person who works to bringabout social changeperseverance: n. trying again and againwithout giving upminister: n. the religious leader in aProtestant church determined: adj.stubbornly certain of attaining a goalservice: n. a weekly or special religiousceremony generally held in a church orother place of worshipproclaim(ed): v. to officially name; todeclaregravesite(s): n. place where a person isburiedGlossary(Father’s Day)father figure(s): n. phrase. Person whoacts as a father in a child’s life such as agrandfather, stepfather, uncle, brother,good friendtreat(ed): v. to give or provide withoutcost, such as a meal or entertainmentLions Club: n. an international volunteerorganization assisting those in need withsuch things as vision and healthscreening, supporting eye hospitals, andassisting youthpromoter: n. supportersermon: n. a speech delivered in public,usually by a religious leader as part of areligious gatheringoutstanding: adj. very special; highquality; excellentveteran: n. one who has been a memberof the armed forces (army, navy, etc.)appreciation: n. thankfulnesssacrifice(s): n. something given up inexchange for some- thing else; e.g., togive up one’s opportunity in order to helpanother person be successful singleparent: n. phrase. one parent alone raisinga child or childrenapproach(ed): v. present someone withan idea or proposalminister: n. a clergy or religious leader,especially in the Protestant churchdedicate(d): v. to observe or have inhonor oflobby(ing): v. to urge officials ormembers of Congress to vote a certainway on an issueimpress upon: v. phrase. to attempt toconvincefull measure: n. phrase. complete, entireobligation(s): n. responsibilities; dutiesproclamation: n. an official publicannouncementcommemorative: adj. describingsomething done to remember a person oran eventsentimental: adj. especially emotionalwhimsical: adj. funny in a light wayheartfelt: adj. sincere; from the heartbeing there: v. phrase. being available,present, supportive48Speaking Practice Prohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Speaking_Practice_Pro.html
  • 48. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netMAY-JUNECollege graduates wear the traditional gown andcap with a tassel.Graduation ceremonies celebrate thecompletion of one part of a person’seducation. The ceremony marks atransition from one stage in a student’slife to another. A university gra-duation ceremony is also called“commencement” since it is arecognition that a student is beginning anew phase of life. Typically, the mostimportant graduations are when a studentcompletes high school (secondaryschool), college, or university. However,it is becoming more common to seegraduations for young children at pre-school or kindergarten, and other childrenwho finish their sixth or eighth year ofschooling.Most graduations in the United Statesoccur in May and June, but some are asearly as mid-April or as late as the firstweek in July. Mid-year collegegraduation ceremonies typically are inDecember or January.At a typical graduation ceremony,students (as well as the teachers andprofessors) wear the traditional cap andgown. The gowns, also called robes,typically are mid-calf in length with bell-shaped sleeves. Usually university gownsare black, but the gowns used in highschool ceremonies may reflect schoolcolors. A gown worn by a person with adoctorate degree has three black velvetstripes on each sleeve, and a velvet striprunning down the front of the gown.A diploma recognizes the academicachievements of a graduate.49Free English Clubhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_Russian_Club.html
  • 49. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThe academic cap usually has a flattop and is also known as a“mortarboard.” The cap also has atassel suspended from a button in the topcenter. When properly worn, the cap isparallel to the ground, though somepeople, especially women, wear it angledback. While traditions vary, in the UnitedStates it is common for universityundergraduate students to begin thecommencement ceremony with theirtassels on the right.Once the administrator hasannounced that these students are nowofficially graduates, they move the tasselto the left side of their cap. Switching thetassel to the left is done individually insome ceremonies or as a group in others.From this point on, if a student wears amortarboard again to receive a higherlevel graduate degree, he or she continuesto wear the tassel on the left. Dependingon the level of schooling and theinstitution, the tassel’s color mayrepresent the school, the field of study, orsimply be decorative.The academic hood is the identifyingsymbol of an advanced degree, and thecolors identify the college that isawarding the degree. Though it is called a“hood” it actually resembles a capedraped over one’s back. The color of thevelvet strip indicates the field of study inwhich the individual’s most advanceddegree was earned. The most frequentlyseen colors are white for liberal arts,yellow for science, light blue foreducation, pink for music, lemon yellowfor library science, drab blue forbusiness, black and white for journalism,purple for law, scarlet for divinity, bluefor philosophy, and green for medicine.The colors of a Master’s degree hood representthe university and the field of study of thegraduate.When students receive their degrees,they usually march onto a stage orplatform to listen to speeches beforereceiving their diplomas. In Americanhigh schools, colleges, and universities,the speakers may include thesalutatorian (the student who has thesecond-highest average grades in thegraduating class), an alumnus of theinstitution, or possibly a famous speakernot associated with the institution, andthe valedictorian (the student with thehighest grade point average in thegraduating class). Common themes ofgraduation speeches include wishing thegraduates well in the “real world,”celebrating an incredible achievement,and letting them know that life afterschool is not the end of the world – infact, it’s the beginning.The giving of diplomas usually takesup the longest portion of the ceremony.One by one the graduates come forwardas their names are called. Sometimes theannouncer will give the graduate’s majorfield of study. An academic administratoror official, such as the principal or schoolsuperintendent of a high school, or the50English Course Informationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Lessons_Information.html
  • 50. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netdean of the college, gives each student adiploma and shakes his or her hand. Afterthe awarding of diplomas, a schoolofficial announces that these students arenow graduates; usually there is muchclapping and cheering from thegraduates, the school’s teachers andadministrators, and the graduates’ friendsand families. Sometimes the graduatesthrow their caps into the air. After theceremony, there are often dinners andparties to honor the new grads.After the ceremony, joyful graduates throw theircaps into the air.Glossarycommencement: n. the beginning; auniversity degree ceremonycap and gown: n. traditional headcovering and robe worn for graduationceremoniesvelvet: n. a fabric with a soft, smooth,dense pile and plain backmortarboard: n. a cap topped by a flatsquare worn for college graduationtassel: n. a bunch of loose threads boundtogether at one end and hanging free atthe other, used as an ornamentliberal arts: phrase. a course of studiesin an American university or college insuch fields of study as foreign languages,English, literature, philosophy, history,abstract sciences (psychology, sociology)drab: adj. dull, light colordivinity: n. a field of study in anAmerican university or college relating toreligious studies or theologydiploma(s): n. a document issued by auniversity or other school testifying that astudent has earned a degree or completeda particular course of studysalutatorian: n. the student, usuallyranked second highest in class, whopronounces the welcome address at acollege or university graduationceremonyalumnus: n. a former studentvaledictorian: n. a student, usuallyranked highest in the graduating class,who delivers the farewell oration atcommencementmajor: n. an academic specializationchosen by students in a college oruniversity51Grammar Reviewhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Review.html
  • 51. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netJUNE 14An American flag flies proudly in the sun.National flags are not merelysymbols of a country. Their colors anddesigns convey past history and futuregoals. Flags have powerful connotations.They speak to the people and politicians.Flags show identity and are flown byinternational carriers and transportvehicles for this purpose. Flags shownational pride; many athletes, forexample, after winning an internationalsports event drape them selves with theirnational flag.It is interesting to point out that theUnited States did not even have astandardized flag until 1912. Called the“Stars and Stripes,” or “Old Glory,” theflag is one of the more complicated inthe world, re quiring 64 pieces of fabricto make. The current flag has thirteen redand white alternating stripes (representing the original 13 states) and fiftystars (each star representing one of thestates of the Union) on a bluebackground.The American flag has changeddesigns more than any other flag in theworld. The first flag, called the “GrandUnion,” designed by George Washington,was flown at the headquarters of theContinental Army on January 1, 1776.This flag contained the British flag, the“Union Jack,” in the upper left corner,and had thirteen stripes of red and white.On June 14, 1777, after the Declarationof Independence, Congress proposed thatthe United States have its own nationalflag instead of showing the British“Union Jack.” The new design replacedthe “Union Jack” with thirteen whitestars on a blue field. The thirteen stars ofthe flag represented the thirteen newstates. The following remark about thedesign is attributed to Washington:We take the stars from heaven,the red from our mother country,separate it by white stripes, thusshowing that we have separated fromher...52Free Trial Lessonhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 52. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIt is said that Betsy Ross, a seamstress, sewed thefirst American flag in 1776.It is not known who actuallydesigned this flag. Betsy Ross, aseamstress, is said to have contributed toits design. She had an upholsterybusiness, which made flags for navyships in Pennsylvania. A legend stillpersists that she showed GeorgeWashington how to make a five-pointedstar, and suggested thirteen stars in acircle for the first flag. Her descendantsclaimed that she offered Washing ton thedesign. Actually, it is unknown whethershe and George Washington ever met.There were few public ceremonieshonoring the “Stars and Stripes” until1877. In that year, on June 14, the firstofficial Flag Day was observed, andCongress requested that the flag be flownfrom every government building in honorof the centennial of the adoption of anational flag. Schools had unfurledAmerican flags over their doors oroutside the building long before this; butin 1890, North Dakota and New Jerseymade a law that re quired their schools tofly the flag daily. New York was the firststate to proclaim June 14 as Flag Day, tobe celebrated as an annual event. Otherstates were slow to follow. Some peoplethought that the day was too close toMemorial Day and Independence Day. In1916, President Woodrow Wilsonproclaimed Flag Day a nationalcelebration.In August 1949, President Harry S.Truman signed the national Flag DayBill, officially recognizing June 14 asFlag Day. Since then, the Presidentproclaims the commemoration yearly,and encourages all Americans in thecountry to display the “Stars and Stripes”outside their homes and businesses.Individual states determine how they willobserve the day. Usually the flag is flownfrom all public buildings, speeches aremade in public places, and ceremoniestake place in some towns and cities.Chairs are lined up and ready for those who wantto sit down to observe the Flag Day parade.Until 2002, elementary schoolchildren across the nation recited thePledge of Allegiance in front of the flagevery weekday morning. However, manypeople felt that this requirement violatedindividual rights outlined in the U.S.Constitution. Some people also felt that53Audio Grammarhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Alphabet_Audio.html
  • 53. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netthe words, “under God,” which had beenadded to the Pledge in 1954, had no placein a patriot ic pledge, and should beremoved. Much debate and controversyarose over these issues, and on June 25,2002, the 9th Circuit Federal Court ofAppeals ruled unconstitutional therequirement that public school childrenrecite the Pledge of Allegiance. Privateschools and institutions were free tomake their own decisions about thepledge. The words, “under God,” remainin the pledge:I pledge allegiance to the flag ofthe United States of America, and tothe republic for which it stands, onenation under God, indivisible, withliberty and justice for all.Americans take the treatment of theirflag seriously, and in the 20th centurythis became an important and sometimescontroversial issue. Included in the codeof ethics governing the handling, use,and display of the flag are such rules as:The national flag should be flownbetween sunrise and sunset, except onsome special occasions. Though it is notillegal to fly the flag 24 hours a day, itshould be spotlighted if flown at night. Itcannot cover a monument or any ceiling.It must not be folded while beingdisplayed. No one should write on anAmerican flag. Ships can lower theirflags slightly in greeting each other, ascan military color guard in ceremonies,but otherwise it should not be dipped forany other object or person. The flagshould not be hung upside down, unlessdone so as a distress signal. The flag isflown at half-mast in honor of a nationalhero or leader upon his or her death, or tohonor a celebrity or group of people suchas soldiers who gave so much, includingtheir lives, for their country.As in every country of the world, thetreatment of the flag displays an opinionor statement. In the late 1960s, Americanstudents wore small flags sewn to theirclothing and draped flags around theirshoulders, symbolically challenging theAmerican government and protesting itsinvolvement in the Vietnam War. Theyburned the American flag in front of theCapitol Building in Washington, D.C., asa statement of protest. In the early 1990s,senators suggested an amendment to theConstitution that would make wearingand burning of the flag illegal. Theproposition was opposed because manyothers felt that this change would be aviolation of Americans’ constitutionalrights to express their opinions freely.The flag is one of the nation’s mostpowerful and significant symbols, and assuch, is celebrated every June 14th in theUnited States. In fact, the symbolicnature of the flag is what inspired theU.S. national anthem. In September1814, during the War of 1812 betweenthe British and Americans, a lawyernamed Francis Scott Key watched a fierybattle in the Baltimore Harbor. Themorning after the battle he saw the flagwaving, and was inspired to write apoem. This poem became the nationalanthem, “The Star Spangled Banner.”The actual flag from that battle is onexhibit at the Museum of AmericanHistory in Washington, D.C.54Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 54. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netGlossaryconvey: v. to suggest; to show; to carrymeaningconnotation: n. meaning; suggestiondrape: v. to cover or hang with fabricstandardize(d): v. to make to look thesame; to have common characteristics orgoalscomplicated: adj. having many parts;involvedfabric: n. cloth; materialUnion: n. refers to the United Statesseamstress: n. woman whose professionis sewingupholstery: n. materials such as cloth,leather, and padding used to make a softcovering, usually forfurnituredescendant(s): n. children,grandchildren, great-grandchildrencentennial: n. one hundred yearanniversaryadoption: n. taking as one’s ownunfurl(ed): v. to unroll; to unfoldbill: n. lawcommemoration: n. a ceremony orobservation to remember someone or agroup or event or actionrecite(d): v. to say out loud from memoryor read out loudPledge of Allegiance: phrase. the oath offidelity to the United States. To pledge isto make a serious promise or agreement.Allegiance refers to loyalty orfaithfulness to a government or group.indivisible: adj. cannot be divided intosmaller partscontroversial: adj. pertaining toopposing, disputed, or debatable viewsissue: n. a topic or matter of discussioncode of ethics: phrase. a set of moralissues and of what is good and badconduct or behavior; a set of issuesdefining what actions or activities areright and what is wrongdip(ped): v. to lower slightlyupside down: adv. with the top turned soas to be positioned on the bottomdistress: adj. emergency; of great troubleamendment: n. an addition or changeanthem: n. a song that is symbolic of apeople, a group, a culture, a movement;usually a song of praiseinspire(d): v. to encourage; to give anidea to55Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 55. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThe Star Spangled Banner56Stories With Audiohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Short_Stories_Audio.html
  • 56. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netJUNE 19In June 2002 trail boss James Frances Jr. leadsthe Emancipation Trail Ride, a 137-mile-longride that commemorates the reading of Lincoln’sEmancipation Proclamation in Galveston, Texas.Juneteenth is the oldest celebration inthe nation to commemorate the end ofslavery in the United States. The word“Juneteenth” comes from a colloquialpronunciation of “June 19th,” which isthe date celebrations commemorate.In 1863 President Abraham Lincolnsigned the Emancipation Proclamation,officially freeing slaves. However, wordof the Proclamation did not reach manyparts of the country right away, andinstead the news spread slowly from stateto state. The slow spread of thisimportant news was in part because theAmerican Civil War had not yet ended.However, in 1865 the Civil War endedand Union Army soldiers beganspreading the news of the war’s end andLincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.On June 19, 1865, Major GeneralGordon Granger and Union Armysoldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas. Onhis arrival, one of General Granger’s firstacts was to publicly read General OrderNumber 3, which began:The people of Texas are informedthat in accordance with aProclamation from the [President] ofthe United States, all slaves are free.This involves an ab solute equality ofrights and rights of property betweenformer masters and slaves, and theconnection heretofore existing between them becomes that betweenemployer and free laborer.Major General Gordon Granger and his soldiersarrived in Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865,where he announced that all slaves were free.57FlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.html
  • 57. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netWith this announcement the last250,000 slaves in the United States wereeffectively freed. Afterward many of theformer slaves left Texas. As they movedto other states to find family membersand start new lives, they carried news ofthe June 19th event with them. Insubsequent decades former slaves andtheir descendants continued tocommemorate June 19th and many evenmade pilgrimages back to Galveston,Texas to celebrate the event.At a Juneteenth Family Fun Festival in DaytonaBeach, Florida, people participate in areenactment of the life of Harriet Tubman whoplayed a major role in freeing millions of slavesin the 1850s .Most of the celebrations initially tookplace in rural areas and includedactivities such as fishing, barbeques, andfamily reunions. Church grounds werealso often the sites for these celebrations.As more and more African Americansimproved their economic conditions andbecame land owners, tracts of land werepurchased specifically for hosting eventssuch as Juneteenth. One of the firstdocumented land purchases specificallyfor holding Juneteenth celebrations wasorganized by Reverend Jack Yates.Through fund-raising efforts, he raised$1000 and purchased what becameknown as Emancipation Park in Houston,Texas.Juneteenth celebrations begandeclining in the 1920s and 1930s, in partbecause of severe economic difficulties,especially the Great Depression.However events during the 1950s and’60s, including the Civil RightsMovement, led to a resurgence inJuneteenth celebrations. As nationalattention focused on improving rights forAfrican Americans, the interest inremembering and celebrating importantAfrican-American events increased. In1968 Reverend Ralph Abernathy led thePoor Peoples’ March to Washington,D.C. This event called for people of allraces, creeds, and economic levels tomeet and show support for the poor.Many of those who attended returnedhome and revived Juneteenthcelebrations as a way of educating andempowering their communities. In fact,two of the largest Juneteenth celebrationstaking place today were founded afterthis march and take place yearly in twocities in the state of Minnesota –Milwaukee and Minneapolis – cities thathad not previously held Juneteenthcelebrations.On January 1, 1980, Juneteenthbecame an official state holiday in Texas,making it the first, and only, officiallyrecognized emancipation celebration.Since then Juneteenth has graduallygrown in popularity throughout theUnited States. Today Juneteenth iscelebrated as an occasion for encouragingself- development and respect for allcultures. Juneteenth is commemorated asa day, week, and sometimes a month,58Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 58. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netmarked with parades, family reunions,barbeques, historical reenactments, andeducational speeches.Children enjoy playing with a hula hoop at StLouis Park in Tyler, Texas in 2002 as a part of aJuneteenth celebration.Glossarycolloquial: adj. informal way of speakingor pronouncing wordsEmancipation Proclamation: n. thegovernment document that officiallyproclaimed or stated American slaves tobe free. The word emancipation refers tosetting someone or something free. Aproclamation is a public or formalannouncement.American Civil War: the war fought inthe U.S. From 1861 to 1865 betweennon-slave states in the north (by theUnion army) and slave-owning states inthe south (by the Confederate army)Union: n refers to the United Statesheretofore: adv. up to this timeeffectively: adv. actuallydescendant(s): n. a person related tosomeone who lived in the pastpilgrimage(s): n. travel to a place thatholds special meaningtract(s): n. a section of landhost(ing): v. to receive people andprovide services for an occasiondocument(ed): adj. evidence providingproof of an eventGreat Depression: phrase. a drasticdecline in the world economy from 1929to 1939 that resulted in widespreadunemployment and povertyresurgence: n. a rise in popularity after aperiod of declining or absent popularityReverend: n. a title of respect applied toa member of the clergy or religiousleader, usually in the Protestant faithcreed(s): n. a set of beliefsrevive(d): v. to make something popularagainbarbeque(s): n. a meal in which the foodis cooked over charcoal or an open fireoutsidereenactment(s): n. a performance of anevent that took place in the past59Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 59. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netJULY 4On every Fourth of July in Washington, D.C., alarge display of fireworks fills the skies over theCapitol Building and the monuments.By the middle of the 1700s, thethirteen colonies that made up part ofEngland’s empire in the “ new world”were growing impatient with the lawsand restrictions set by a king 3,000 milesaway. They were resentful about taxesimposed upon them; they felt that theyshould not have to pay British taxesbecause they were not allowedrepresentatives in Parliament. Theirsentiments were expressed in the slogan“Taxation without representation istyranny!” Many colonists wanted to beself-governing and free from British rule.But independence would be a gradualand painful process. Some colonistscould not forget that they were Britishcitizens, and felt that they owedallegiance to King George III. Otherswanted the protection of the “MotherCountry.” Yet almost all colonists weredissatisfied with the way they weregoverned by Britain.Unrest and tensions continued togrow, and by 1765 many colonists hadjoined secret groups called “Sons ofLiberty” to plan action or even violenceagainst British authority. This angered theking and he sent more troops to enforceBritish law. The colonists sometimestaunted the British soldiers or threwstones at them.Finally, two major events stronglyunited the colonists against Britain, andhurried destiny. On March 5, 1770,British troops fired on an angry group ofBoston citizens, killing five and injuringothers. The incident, called the “BostonMassacre,” stunned and infuriated thecolonists.The second major event involved atax on tea. Tea was a popular commodityin the colonies, but England’s tax lawsgave an unfair advantage to one teamerchant, the British-owned East IndiaCompany. This made the colonists angry,and they decided to stop buying anddrinking tea from the East IndiaCompany. To dramatize the protest,Samuel Adams and other men of Bostonorganized the “Boston Tea Party.” OnDecember 16, 1773, they dressed up as60Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 60. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAmerican Indians, boarded an East IndiaCompany ship and dumped its cargo oftea into Boston Harbor. King Georgeresponded by closing Boston Harbor andenacting more restrictions andpunishments. In addition, he requiredcitizens of Boston to house and feedBritish soldiers.Representatives in the Virginiacolony took the first step towardindependence by voting to set up acommittee, the Continental Congress, torepresent the colonies. The FirstContinental Congress met in Septemberof 1774 and had delegates from twelvecolonies. They drew up a list ofgrievances against the crown, and thisbecame the first draft of the Declarationof Independence. In the meantime,colonists continued to organize protestsagainst Britain, and to train their ownmilitias.The Revolutionary War began onApril 19, 1775, when British troops triedto raid the Massachusetts militia.Colonists were quick to form fightingunits and resist the British troops. InMay of 1775 the Second ContinentalCongress met, and elected Virginiadelegate George Washington to beCommander in Chief of the ContinentalArmy. He led American troops againstthe British throughout the war. For thenext eight years, colonists foughtfervently for independence. They werenot as well trained or well equipped asBritish troops, but they had otheradvantages: They had a fierce and unitedpurpose; they fought on familiar terrain;and they used new tactics learned fromthe Native inhabitants. They often hadno uniforms, but their clothing helpedcamouflage them in the forests, while theBritish soldiers, called “Red Coats,” werehighly visible in their bright reduniforms.The Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.61Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html
  • 61. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netDuring the fight for freedom, anotherwar – a war of words – was being wagedin Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. On July 2,1776, the Continental Congress prepareda second draft of the list of grievances.John Hancock, president of theContinental Congress, was the first tosign. The document, the Declaration ofIndependence, was consideredtreasonous by the crown, and the fifty-six men who signed it were in danger ofbeing executed. Yet on July 4, 1776, theContinental Congress approved theDeclaration of Independence, officiallybreaking bonds with England andforming a new independent nation, theUnited States of America.Independence Day is celebrated onJuly 4 because on that day independencefrom Britain was officially declared. OnJuly 8, 1776, the Declaration ofIndependence was read publicly for thefirst time and people celebrated. Bellsrang out, bands played, and ships firedtheir guns; people lit candles and set offfirecrackers. But the War ofIndependence dragged on until 1783when independence was finally won.That year, Independence Day was made aholiday in the thirteen new states. But notuntil 1941 was Independence Dayofficially declared a federal legal holiday.John Adams, who became the SecondPresident of the United States, was oneof the signers of the Declaration ofIndependence. He wrote to his wife, “I…believe that it will be celebrated bysucceeding generations as the greatanniversary festival.... It ought to be[celebrated] with pomp and parades,with shows, games, sports, guns, bells,bonfires and illuminations from one endof this continent to the other...”John Adams’ words may havepredicted or inspired futureIndependence Day celebrations. EarlyIndependence Day, or “Fourth of July,”celebrations did, indeed, include gamesand sports events, shows, militaryparades, fireworks, and the liberal iringof guns and cannons. But the firearmsand fireworks caused many injuries, andeven deaths. So in the early 1900s,citizens convinced officials to prohibitguns and to control the use of fireworkson Independence Day. The phrase, “asafe and sane Fourth” became a popularslogan, and is still used today toencourage safety and common sense onthe Fourth of July. Today, many citiesprohibit fireworks or allow only smallitems like cherry bombs and sparklers.Some cities organize a local fireworksshow, run by trained pyrotechnicsspecialists.Every Fourth of July Americans havea holiday from work or school.Communities and families have all-daypicnics with favorite foods like hot dogsand hamburgers, potato salad, bakedbeans, pie, and watermelon. Afternoonactivities would not be complete withoutlively music, a friendly baseball game, orFrisbee toss, and maybe, a three-leggedrace, and a pie-eating or watermelon-eating contest. Some cities have paradeswith people dressed as the original“founding fathers” or early colonists,who march to the music of high schoolbands. At dusk, people gather to watchthe city fireworks display. In many areasof the country, special events take place.For example, a Freedom Festival isheld in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at62Free English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.html
  • 62. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIndependence Hall, where theDeclaration of Independence was signed.Costumed Americans often reenacthistorical scenes, and read theDeclaration of Independence for thecrowd. In Massachusetts, the ship U.S.S.John F. Kennedy may come in to BostonHarbor in full sail on the Fourth of July,and the Boston Pops Orchestra will playa musical concert of patriotic songs ashundreds of people watch ireworks burstover the water.The Liberty BellThe Liberty Bell, which originally came fromEngland in 1752, rang to announce the signing ofthe Declaration of Independence on July 8, 1776.“Proclaim liberty throughout all theland unto all the inhabitants thereof.”The sight and sound of a ringing bellon the Fourth of July symbolizes freedomto most Americans and brings to mind theLiberty Bell, which rang out inPhiladelphia when the new country wasborn.The Liberty Bell once hung in theOld State House, which later becameIndependence Hall, in Philadelphia. Itwas rung at every important nationalevent, such as presidential elections,statesmen’s funerals, and of course, theFourth of July. The bell came toPhiladelphia from a foundry in Englandin 1752. But the very first time the bellwas rung, it cracked! Repairs were madeand for the next eighty-three years, thebell tolled on special occasions – themost significant on July 8, 1776 toannounce the signing of the Declarationof Independence.Sometime after 1846, the Liberty Bellcracked again and it was removed fromthe bell tower to protect it from furtherdamage. It was placed on display inIndependence Hall. Today, the bell ishoused in the Liberty Bell Center, whichis open to visitors year round, and is partof the Independence National HistoricPark.At one time, the foundry in Englandthat had made the bell generously offeredto take the cracked bell, melt it down andcast it anew, at no charge. But Americanoficials decided to keep the old LibertyBell as it was. They felt that theAmerican people loved the old bell, andthat the crack in the bell was a cherishedpart of its character and legacy.America, The BeautifulFrom time to time, it is suggested thatthe song, “America the Beautiful” bemade the national anthem, in place of“The Star-Spangled Banner.”Proponents of this idea argue that“America the Beautiful” is a betternational anthem because it praises thewhole country, not only the lag, and itwas not written as a result of a war.63Free LSL English Grammar Speaking Drill Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Drill_Book_PDF.html
  • 63. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAmerica, The Beautiful64Skype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 64. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAlso, it is much easier to sing.“America the Beautiful” was written in1893 by Katherine Lee Bates, a writerand professor at Wellesley College.While on vacation, she took a ride upPike’s Peak, a mountaintop in Colorado,and saw a spectacular view that fewpeople in those days had the opportunityto see. The “spacious skies” and “purplemountains” inspired her to write a poem,which was eventually published. Thepublic loved the poem, and it was oftenput to music using any tune that fit thelyrics. Eventually, the poem was set tothe music of a hymn, “Materna,” bySamuel Ward, and this is the song thatAmericans know and love today as themost beautiful tribute to their country.Glossaryrestriction(s): n. rules; regulationsimpose(d): v. to force uponsentiment(s): n. strong feelingsslogan: n. saying or phrase that expressesthe feelings or cause of a grouptyranny: n. unjust or cruel use of powergradual: adj. slow; little by littleallegiance: n. loyaltyunrest: n. public dissatisfaction orrebelliontension(s): n. strained or hostile relationstaunt(ed): v. to tease in a hostile waydestiny: n. fate; futuremassacre: n. execution of a large numberof peoplestun(ned): adj. shocked; surprisedinfuriate(d): adj. greatly angeredcommodity: n. product or good which isbought or soldadvantage: n. benefit, gain, or profitdramatize: v. to emphasize in a vivid oremotional waydress(ed) up: v. phrase. to wear acostumecargo: n. a load of goods or rawmaterials carried by ship or airplaneenact(ing): v. to make official; to makeinto a lawhouse: v. to provide lodging or sheltergrievance(s): n. complaintcrown: n. monarchy; the king and hisrulemilitia(s): n. local, state or reservemilitary force, called in for emergenciesraid: v. to attack for the purpose ofstealing goods and suppliesfervently: adv. strongly; passionatelyterrain: n. land and its physical featurestactic(s): n. strategies; methodsinhabitant(s): n. resident; person wholives in a specific placecamouflage: v. to hide or conceal byblending in with the surroundingsvisible: adj. able to be seen; clearly seenwage(d): v. to engage in; to carry ontreasonous: adj. acting against one’s owncountryexecute(d): v. to kill by official order65IELTS Test Preparationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/IELTS_Test_Preparation_Plus.html
  • 65. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netfirecracker(s): n. type of firework thatexplodes with a bang and a flash of lightwhen lit. See fireworks.pomp: n. great ceremony or displaybonfire(s): n. large public fire used forcelebration or other eventpredict(ed): v. to suggest or see thefuturefireworks: n. any type of explosive thatproduces a bright display or loud noise,used for celebrationliberal: adj. free; uncontrolled; excessivefirearm(s): n. gun, cannon, or other suchweaponprohibit: v. to not allow; to forbidsane: adj. mentally stable; using goodjudgementcherry bomb(s): n. small roundexplosive that looks like a cherry andexplodes with a loud crack when thrownon the groundsparkler(s): n. a type of fireworks on along stick which sends out sparks andflashes of light when litpyrotechnics specialist(s): n. phrase.person trained in the safe use offireworks and skilled in elaboratefireworks presentationsFrisbee: n. brand name of a flat, round,plastic disk that is thrown and caught as asports activitythree-legged race: n. phrase. a foot racein which one person’s left leg is tied toanother person’s right leg, and they runtied together on “three legs”founding fathers: n. phrase. the menwho wrote and signed the Constitutionand led the United States in its earlyyearsreenact: v. to perform or act out a sceneor event from the pastburst: v. to explode or break open withforcefoundry: n. factory where items aremade from melted ore and metaltoll(ed): v. to ringbell tower: n. a tall structure where bellsare hungcast: v. to shape melted metalanew: adv. in a new manner; once morecherish(ed): adj. loved and respectedlegacy: n. special history or anything thatis handed down from one generation orera to the nextanthem: n. a song that is symbolic of apeople, a group, a culture, a movement;usually a song of praiseproponent(s): n. one who supports oragrees with a cause or ideaspacious: adj. having a lot of space; wideand openhymn: n. religious song or melody66Speaking Practice Prohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Speaking_Practice_Pro.html
  • 66. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netFIRST MONDAY IN SEPTEMBEREleven-year-old Peter McGuire soldpapers on the street in New York City. Heshined shoes and cleaned stores, and laterran errands. It was 1863 and his father, apoor Irish immigrant, had just enlisted tofight in the Civil War. Peter had to helpsupport his mother and six brothers andsisters.In the nineteenth century, manyimmigrants from Europe and else-wheresettled in New York City, Chicago, andother major areas of the United States.They found that living conditions werenot as wonderful as they had dreamed.Many immigrants lived in the poorestghettos of the city in run-down housing.Often there were six families crowdedinto a house made for one family.Working conditions were even worse.Immigrant men, women, and even veryyoung children worked in factories, clothand steel mills, coalmines, and inconstruction. They worked under dismalconditions, for twelve to four teen hoursa day, often seven days a week. Theywere allowed to stop only for a short timeto eat, and received no vacations orbenefits. They came to work even if theywere sick, because if they didn’t, theycould be fired. Thousands of people werewaiting to take their places. In thosedays, there was no concept of workers’rights, and factory owners could treatworkers as they wished. Immigrantworkers were especially vulnerable.When Peter McGuire was seventeen,he began an apprenticeship in a pianoshop. This job was better than hisprevious jobs, for he was learning a trade,but he still worked long hours with lowpay. At night he went to meetings andclasses in economics and social issues ofthe day. One of the main issues ofconcern pertained to labor conditions.Workers were tired of long hours, lowpay, unsafe working environments anduncertain jobs. They spoke of organizingthemselves into a union of laborers toimprove their working conditions. In thespring of 1872, Peter McGuire and100,000 workers went on strike andmarched through the streets, demanding adecrease in the long working day.Garment workers were a major force in themovement for union representation.This event convinced Peter that anorganized labor movement was67Free English Clubhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_Russian_Club.html
  • 67. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netimportant for the future of workers’rights. He spent the next year speaking tocrowds of workers and unemployedpeople, and lobbying the citygovernment for jobs and relief money. Itwas not an easy road for Peter McGuire.He became known as a “disturber of thepublic peace.” The city governmentignored his demands. Peter developed areputation among business owners as atroublemaker, and he could not find a jobin his trade. He began to travel up anddown the East Coast to speak to laborersabout unionizing. In 1881, he moved toSt. Louis, Missouri, and began toorganize carpenters there. He organized aconvention of carpenters in Chicago, andit was at this event that a national unionof carpenters was founded. He becameGeneral Secretary of the UnitedBrotherhood of Carpenters and Joinersof America.The idea of organizing workersaccording to their trades spread aroundthe country. Factory workers,dockworkers, and toolmakers all began todemand and get their rights to an eight-hour workday, a secure job, and a futurein their trades. Peter McGuire andlaborers in other cities decided to plan aholiday for workers, both as a tribute totheir contributions to the nation, and as ameans of bringing more public awarenessto their struggles. They chose the firstMonday in September, a date midwaybetween Independence Day andThanksgiving.On September 5, 1882 the first LaborDay parade was held in New York City.Twenty thousand workers marched in theparade up Broadway. They carriedbanners that read “LABOR CREATESALL WEALTH,” and “EIGHT HOURSFOR WORK; EIGHT HOURS FORREST; EIGHT HOURS FORRECREATION!” After the parade, therewere picnics all around the city. Workersand celebrants ate Irish stew, homemadebread, and apple pie. At night, fire- workswere set off. Within the next few years,the idea of a day to honor workers spreadfrom coast to coast, and all statescelebrated Labor Day. In 1894, Congressvoted it a national holiday.A member of a labor union marches with he flagat a Labor Day parade.Today we celebrate Labor Day withless fanfare on the first Monday ofSeptember. Some cities have parades andcommunity picnics. Many politicians“kick off” their political campaigns byholding rallies on the holiday. MostAmericans consider Labor Day the endof the summer, and the beaches and other68English Course Informationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Lessons_Information.html
  • 68. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netpopular resort areas are packed withpeople enjoying one last three-dayweekend. For many students, the newschool year begins right after Labor Day.Glossaryimmigrant: n. person who movespermanently to another countrycondition(s): n. circumstance; lifesituationghetto(s): n. defined area of a town orcity where a certain ethnic or culturalgroup livesrun-down: adj. needing much repair; inbad condition because of neglectdismal: adj. miserable and depressingfire(d): v. to dismiss from a jobconcept: n. idea; notionvulnerable: adj. unprotected; easilyharmed or taken advantage ofapprenticeship: n. on-the-job trainingfor someone new to the fieldpertain(ed): v. relate toorganize(ing): v. to form an associationfor a goal or purposeunion: n. an organization of workerson strike: idiom. not working as a protestagainst managementlabor movement: n. phrase. politicalactivities to improve the conditions oflaborerslobby(ing): v. to urge officials ormembers of Congress to vote a certainway on an issueignore(d): v. pay no attention to;disregardreputation: n. public opinion about thequality of someone’s characterunionize(ing): v. to form a legal union orgroupconvention: n. large meeting generally tolearn about and discuss issuesjoiner(s): n. carpenter who makes desks,chairs, and other furniture that is puttogether from piecesfanfare: n. large, noisy celebration orshowkick off: v. to begin, launch, commencerally(ies): n. meeting held to arousepublic interest and supportpack(ed): v. to fill as fully as possible69Grammar Reviewhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Review.html
  • 69. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netI Hear America SingingWalt WhitmanThe American poet, Walt Whitman, conveys a romanticized picture of laboras he celebrates the spirit and contributions of the American worker in thisfamous poem.I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear:Those of mechanics – each one singing his, as it should be, blithe and strong;The carpenter singing his, as he measures his plank or beam,The mason singing his, as he makes ready for work, or leaves for work;The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat – the deckhand singingon the steamboat deck;The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench—the hatter singing as hestands;The woodcutter’s song – the plowboy’s on his way in the morning, or at noonintermission, or at sundown;The delicious singing of the mother – or of the young wife at work – or of thegirl sewing or washingEach singing what belongs to him or her and to none else;The day what belongs to the day – at night the party of young fellows, robust,friendly,Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.70Free Trial Lessonhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 70. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIN HISPANIC HISTORYRomualdo PachecoGovernmentRomualdo Pacheco became the first Hispanic-American U.S. Representative when he won theCalifornia seat in 1876 by a one-vote lead. Fourmonths later the win was overturned in favor of hisopponent, but in 1879, Pacheco was again elected andwent on to serve two terms.Science and MedicineIn 1968, Luiz Walter Alvarez won the Nobel Prizein physics for his discoveries about subatomicparticles. Alvarez held patents for over 30 differentinventions and was inducted into the Inventor’s Hall ofFame. Along with a few other scientists, Alvarez andhis son were the first to propose the now-acceptedtheory that the mass extinction of dinosaurs wascaused by a meteor impact.Literature and PublishingReleased in 1872, Maria Amparo Ruiz de Burton’snovel Who Would Have Thought It? became the firstEnglish novel written and published in the U.S. by anHispanic American.FilmIn 1961, Rita Moreno became the first HispanicAmerican to win the Best Supporting Actress Oscaraward for her performance in the film West Side Story.She is also the first Hispanic American to win all of themajor acting awards offered in the U.S., the Oscar,Grammy, Tony, and Emmy awards.Rita Morena71Audio Grammarhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Alphabet_Audio.html
  • 71. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netLucrezia BoriMusicIn 1912, Lucrezia Bori became the firstHispanic American opera diva when shedebuted at the Metropolitan Opera. She was aleading performer at the Metropolitan Operafrom 1912 – 1915, and again from 1920 – 1936.In 1935, Bori became director of theMetropolitan Opera Association.Air and SpaceIn 1986, Franklin Chang-Diaz became thefirst Hispanic-American astronaut. He flew onseven space shuttle missions during his career,his first time on the space shuttle “Columbia” in1986.MilitaryIn 1866, David Farragut became the firstU.S. Navy officer in history to reach the rank ofAdmiral.SportsRoberto Clemente was the first HispanicAmerican to serve on the baseball PlayersAssociation Board, and in 1973, he also becamethe first Hispanic-American baseball playerinducted into the Hall of Fame. David Farragut72Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 72. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netSEPTEMBER 15 – OCTOBER 15Hispanic Heritage Month began asNational Hispanic Heritage Week in 1968,proclaimed as such by U.S. PresidentLyndon B. Johnson. It was expanded to amonth-long celebration in 1988. This monthcelebrates the traditions and cultures of allAmericans who trace their roots to Spain,Mexico, and the Spanish-speaking nations ofCentral America, South America, and theCaribbean. September 15 was chosen sinceit is the anniversary of independence of fivecountries: Costa Rica, El Salvador,Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Inaddition, Mexico celebrates its independenceon September 15th, and Chile on September18th.Celebrations in September and Octoberoften include cultural activities andprograms with speeches, food, dance, andmusic that recognize the political, artistic,athletic, and educational achievements ofHispanic Americans. One well-knownpolitical activist was Cesar Chavez who wasthe major force in the Labor Movement ofthe 1960s. Cesar Chavez was born to a poorfamily on a farm in Arizona in 1927. As ayoung child of ten, he was forced intomigrant farm labor. Despite these obstacles,he grew up to be a gifted leader andorganizer. As a person well aware of theinequities that affected American farmlaborers, in 1962 he founded the NationalFarm Workers Association in Californiawhich focused on working for collectivebargaining and a minimum wage for farmworkers. In 1966, this association mergedwith other unions, forming the United FarmWorkers, which advocated strikes, boycotts,and marches to bring about political change.Chavez adhered to the philosophy of MartinLuther King by working in non-violent waysto achieve equity. In 1968 the United FarmWorkers advocated a widespread boycottof California grapes, finally signing acontract with the grape growers in 1970.Chavez then continued with a boycott ofCalifornia lettuce. He died in 1993, butreceived a posthumous National Medal ofHonor Award in 1994 from President BillClinton, the highest civilian award that isgiven by the U.S. government.Glossaryexpand(ed): v. to increasetrace: v. to discover the cause or origin ofsomethingmigrant: n. someone who moves from placeto place, often relating to the harvestindustryinequity(ies): n. a lack of equality or fairtreatmentfound(ed): to bring something into existencecollective bargain(ing): phrase. a system inwhich employees talk as a group to theiremployers to try to agree on issues such aspay and conditions of workwage: n. a fixed amount of money that ispaid regularly, usually for work that requiresphysical skills or strengthadvocate(d): v. to speak in support of anidea or course of actionstrike(s): n. a refusal to continue workingbecause of an argument with an employerabout working conditions or payboycott: n. a refusal to buy or supportsomething in order to express strongdisapproval, usually based on political,economic, or social reasonsadhere(d) to: v. to maintain a belief orstandardwidespread: adj. existing in many placesposthumous: adj. happening after a person’sdeath73Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 73. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netSECOND MONDAY IN OCTOBERChristopher Columbus, an Italian seaman livingin Portugal, convinced Queen Isabella of Spainto fund his first voyage west across the AtlanticOcean in 1492.Columbus day is a legal federalholiday that commemorates the firstvoyage of Christopher Columbus, whosailed west from Spain in 1492 andreached the islands of present dayBahamas. This region was little known toEuropeans, although it had been exploredand inhabited by Native peoples for over30,000 years.Columbus mistakenly thought thathe had found a new route to the East,which at the time meant China, Japan,India, and the Indies. So he called theislands the “West Indies,” and theindigenous inhabitants “Indians.”Columbus was not the first Europeanto set foot on this land – ScandinavianVikings, Irish missionaries, and othersmay have been there as early as 1,000AD. Nor did Columbus “discoverAmerica” as many Americanschoolchildren were taught. Yet, the firstvoyage of Columbus was historicallysignificant for a number of reasons. Itconfirmed that there were rich landsacross the Atlantic Ocean, and it inspireda wave of exploration and colonizationof the Americas – including land thateventually became the United States. Forthe approximately 10 million Indians,spread throughout the Americas at thetime, the arrival of Columbus wassignificant in a different way – it changedthe course of their lives, and eventuallyled to their near extinction and thedecimation of their cultures.In the 15th century, Europeanmerchants were looking for a new andshorter trade route to the East, where theycould get spices, gems, gold, and other“exotic” goods. The main route wasoverland, but it was long and dangerous.Portuguese sailors had explored an oceanroute, sailing down the coast of Africa,around the Cape of Good Hope, on thesouthern tip of Africa, then across theIndian Ocean to Asia. But this too was avery long and treacherous journey.74Stories With Audiohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Short_Stories_Audio.html
  • 74. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAn early map indicates the lands in the region visited by Christopher Columbus.Christopher Columbus (or CristóbalColón, as he called him self) was anItalian seaman, living in Portugal. Hebelieved that Japan was only 3,000 mileswest of Europe, and China and Indiawere not far beyond. Educated men ofthe time knew that Columbus hadunderestimated the size of the AtlanticOcean, and the world. Still, Columbusinsisted that by sailing west, he wouldfind a shorter route to the East. He wouldthen set up a major trading port for theexchange of goods be tween east andwest. All he needed were ships andmoney. He asked the kings of Portugal,England, and France for financialsupport, but all refused. Columbus was askilled seaman and navigator, but no onewanted to invest in such a fool-heartyventure.Eventually, Columbus convincedQueen Isabella of Spain. She and KingFerdinand agreed to all his requests.Finally, on August 3, 1492, he and ninetymen set sail from Spain on the ship, theSanta Maria. Two other ships, the Niñaand the Pinta, accompanied him. Theysailed west. Two long months went by.His men became tired and sick, andthreatened to turn the ships back.75FlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.html
  • 75. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netColumbus encouraged them, certain thatthey were close to Asia. Finally, onOctober 11th they sighted land. The nextmorning they landed on a lush island,and Columbus thought he had succeededin his mission. He was not aware of histrue location. On the island heencountered the native inhabitants, theArawak. From them he learned that theisland was named “Guanahani.”Columbus christened it “San Salvador”and claimed it immediately for Spain. Afew days later, he landed on an islandnear present-day Cuba, which he thoughtwas part of China.A monument in Sevilla, Spain is dedicated toChristopher Columbus, with King Ferdinand onone side and Queen Isabella on the other.The Arawak were helpful toColumbus and his crew at first, but theirfeelings quickly changed whenColumbus captured some of theirmembers to take back to the Queen.When he returned to Spain on March15, 1493, Isabella and Ferdinand receivedhim with great celebration and honor. Hewas granted the title of “Admiral of Allthe Ocean Seas,” was given funding formore voyages, and ordered to colonizethe new region for Spain. Columbusmade a number of voyages to theAmericas, and expanded Spain’s empire,yet he never learned the region’s trueidentity. At his death, he still believed hehad found a route to Asia.The Making of a HolidayFew celebrations marked the voyageof Columbus until hundreds of yearslater. In 1792, a ceremony was held inNew York honoring Columbus, and amonument was dedicated to him. Soonafterward, the city of Washington wasofficially named the District ofColumbia, and made the capital of theUnited States. In the next century,statues, streets, rivers, and cities werenamed for Columbus. The ColumbianExposition in Chicago in 1892 displayedreplicas of Columbus’s three ships.Columbus Day became a holiday, duein part to the efforts of Italians in NewYork City and elsewhere. Out of pride fortheir “native son,” a group of New YorkItalians organized the first celebration of“The Discovery of America” on October12, 1866. In following years, Italians inother cities held similar events withbanquets, parades, and dances. In 1869,San Francisco Italians celebrated October12, and called it “Columbus Day.”President Franklin Roosevelt officiallyproclaimed October 12 as ColumbusDay in 1937. Now, it is celebrated on thesecond Monday in October, allowing fora long holiday weekend. In recentdecades Columbus Day has generatedmuch controversy. Native Americangroups and others began to speak outagainst the claim that Columbus haddiscovered America. They proposed that76Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 76. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netNative Americans, not Columbus, shouldbe recognized as the first and truediscoverers of America. They felt that inthe spirit of reconciliation the day shouldcelebrate Native Americans. Peoplepetitioned their state and localgovernments to establish an officialNative American Day holiday, or toreplace Columbus Day with NativeAmerican Day. As a result, in schoolsacross the country, Columbus Daycurricula began to include information onNative Americans, and on the impact ofEuropean contact. Some states now callthe holiday by the-dual name, ColumbusDay/Native American Day. Other stateshave established a separate NativeAmerican Day holiday. The state ofSouth Dakota has officially replacedColumbus Day with Native AmericanDay in recognition of indigenous people.Glossarycommemorate(s): v. to honor andremember with a ceremony or holidayinhabit(ed): v. to live in; to reside inmistakenly: adv. in errorindigenous: adj. native to a regionset foot: v. phrase. to step upon land orpropertysignificant: adj. important; meaningfulconfirm(ed): v. to establish as trueextinction: n. dying off of all members ofa group or speciesdecimation: n. destruction or killing of alarge part ofmerchant(s): n. person who buys andsells itemsspice(s): n. flavoring for food, such as,pepper, nutmeg, cinnamongem(s): n. precious stone such as ruby,emerald, diamondexotic: adj. strange or different in a waythat is fascinating, interesting, beautiful;foreigntreacherous: adj. difficult and dangerousinsist(ed): v. to be firm in one’s opinion,request, or beliefinvest: v. to put money into, for futuregainfool-hearty: adj. foolish; unwiseventure: n. plan; undertakingconvince(d): v. to persuade; to makesomeone agreeaccompany(-ied): v. to go withencourage(d): v. to inspire; to makeothers feel braverlush: adj. green and abundant with plantlifemission: n. goal; important plan or aiminhabitant(s): n. person who lives in acertain placechristen(ed): v. to name ceremoniouslyfunding: n. money for a project orventuremonument: n. a stone, building, or somestructure (large or small) created toremember a person or eventdedicate(d): v. designed specifically for aperson or purposereplica(s): n. exact copy; likenessnative son: n. phrase. man native to aparticular place, often one’s same countrybanquet(s): n. a special meal held inhonor of an important event, usually alarge meal for many peopleproclaim(ed): v. to declare officially andpubliclycontroversy: n. issue for which peoplehave strong opinions on both sidesreconciliation: n. renewed friendliness orrelationshippetition(ed): v. to request with an officialletter or statement77Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 77. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netOCTOBER 31Pumpkins and children in costumes area common sight on Halloween.On October 31st, dozens of childrendressed in costumes knock on theirneighbors’ doors and yell, “trick ortreat” when the door opens. Pirates andprincesses, ghosts, and popular heroesand heroines of the day all hold bagsopen to catch the candy or other goodiesthat the neighbors drop in. As they giveeach child a treat, the neighbors exclaimover the costumes and try to guess whois under the masks.Like some other American holidays,Halloween customs evolved from a mixof traditions. The word “Halloween”comes from the name of a holiday fromthe 800s AD, called All Hallows’ Eve.This was the day and evening before AllSaints’ Day, a holy day that wascelebrated on November 1st. The originsof Halloween go back even further,however. In ancient times, October 31stwas the eve of the Celtic New Year. TheCelts, who lived over 2,000 years ago,were the ancestors of the present-dayIrish, Welsh, and Scottish people. On thisday, the Celts held the festival ofSamhain in honor of the Celtic lord of thedead. In the evening, Samhain allowedghosts to walk and mingle with theliving, or so the Celts thought. Thetownspeople baked food all that day, andwhen night came, they dressed up inanimal heads and skins, and attended agreat bonfire, set by their priests, theDruids. Hoping that the ghosts wouldleave peacefully before the new year, thepeople carried the food they had made tothe edge of town and left it for the spiritsto find. The celebration of Samhain alsomarked the end of the harvest season,and the beginning of the cold, dark timeof year.Much later, when October 31 was nolonger the last day of the year, autumnfestivals continued to be held, celebratingthe harvest and honoring the dead. Overtime, however, Halloween became acelebration mostly for children. “Ghosts”went from door to door asking for treats,or else a trick would be played on theowners of the house. When millions ofIrish, British, and others from Celtic78Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 78. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netregions immigrated to the United Statesin the 1840s, the traditions came withthem.Today, many schools plan Halloweenfestivities, and some neighborhoods holdparties, often called “block parties”which are popular among young and oldalike. More recently, adults have begunto celebrate Halloween, too. They dressup like historical or political figures,movie stars, or cartoon characters, and goto masquerade par- ties or city-sponsoredstreet parties. In many towns and cities,costumed children and their parentsgather at shopping malls early in theevening. Stores and businesses giveparties, with games and treats for thechildren. Teenagers enjoy costumedances at their schools, and the moreoutrageous the costume the better!Certain pranks such as soaping carwindows and tipping over garbage cansare expected. But partying and pranksare not the only things that Halloweenrevelers enjoy doing. Some collectmoney to buy food and medicine forneedy children around the world. Othersmay sponsor a Halloween party, ordonate money or costumes for needychildren locally. At Halloween parties,children play games, listen to ghoststories, enjoy snacks, and decorate theirHalloween “trick-or-treat” bag for theevening. One traditional Halloween gameis bobbing for apples. One child at a timehas to get an apple from a tub of waterwithout using any hands! How? Bysinking his or her face into the water andbiting into the apple!Symbols of HalloweenJack-o-lanterns are pumpkins that are carvedout like faces and displayed at night withcandles inside.Halloween originated in part as acelebration connected with evil spiritsand the dead. Witches flying onbroomsticks with black cats, ghosts,goblins, and skeletons have all evolvedas symbols of Halloween. They arepopular as trick-or-treat costumes, anddecorations for greeting cards andwindows. Black is one of the traditionalHalloween colors, probably becauseHalloween festivals and traditions tookplace at night and also marked thebeginning of winter darkness. In theweeks before October 31, retail shopsand school windows are decorated withsilhouettes of witches and black cats.Some people decorate their front doorwith Halloween symbols or fake spiderwebs. Others create elaborate and scaryscenes, such as spooky graveyards, ontheir front lawns. Pumpkins are also asymbol of Halloween. Since the pumpkinis a large, orange-colored squash, orange79Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html
  • 79. www.larisaschooloflanguage.nethas become the other traditionalHalloween color. Carving pumpkins intojack-o’-lanterns is a Halloween customdating back to Ireland. A legend grew upabout a man named Jack who was sostingy that he was not allowed intoheaven when he died. His spirit wasdoomed to wander around thecountryside, holding a lantern to light hisway.The Irish people carved scary facesout of turnips representing “Jack of theLantern,” or Jack-o’-lantern. When theIrish brought their customs to the UnitedStates, they carved faces on pumpkinsbecause in the autumn, pumpkins weremore plentiful than turnips. Today a jack-o’-lantern, with a candle lit and glowinginside, is placed in the window or on thefront porch of a house on Halloweennight to let costumed children know thatthere are goodies waiting if they knockon the door and say “Trick or Treat!”Calling out “trick or treat,” children dressedin costumes knock on their neighbors’doorswith bags held out for candiesand other treats.Glossarycostume(s): n. clothes, make-up, masksand other things such as jewelry worn soas to look like or give the illusion ofbeing like another person, from anothertime period, or of being like somethingelse such as a ghost or monster“Trick or Treat”: phrase. an expressionused by children at Halloween: “Give usa treat, or we’ll play a joke on you!”pirate(s): n. a robber on the seagoody(ies): n. sweet food that childrenlike to eattreat: n. a reward, usually a sweet foodexclaim over: v. phrase. to admireopenlyhallow: v. to make sacred or holy; tomake highly respectedancestor(s): n. family member who camebefore, such as grandparent, great-grandparent and so on.mingle: v. to mix with; to join withdress up: v. to wear a costumebonfire: n. a large public fire, aroundwhich people may gather for a party orcelebrationharvest: adj. referring to the time of yearwhen crops are ripe and ready to gatheroutrageous: adj. shocking; elaborate orwild in designprank(s): n. a trick or mischievous actsoap(ing): v. to cover with soapreveler(s): n. people who are celebratingghost story(-ies): n. phrase. a scary orfrightening story about ghosts, goblins orevil spiritsbob(bing): v. to move up and downbriefly and repeatedly80Free English Test!http://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Testing_English.html
  • 80. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netoriginate(d): v. to begin or start apractice or traditionwitch(es): n. a woman that is believed tohave super-natural powers; some arebelieved to be good, but most areconsidered to be evil and use black magicgoblin(s): n. an evil or tricky spiritskeleton(s): n. the bone framework of abodyevolve(d): v. to develop over a longperiod of timesilhouette(s): n. the shadow-like shape ofsomething seen from the side; an outlineof something or someone, filled in withblackfake: adj. artificial; falseelaborate: adj. complicated in designspooky: adj. scary, frighteninggraveyard: n. a place (cemetery) wherepeople bury (put under the ground) theirdead, or place their dead in tombs abovegroundsquash: n. a round or long vegetablebelonging to the gourd familycarve(-ing): to cut a design carefullywith a knifejack-o-lantern: n. phrase. a pumpkinwhich has been carved with a scary orfunny facelegend: n. a story passed from onegeneration to anotherstingy: adj. unwilling to sharedoom(ed): v. to judge against; condemnor send to a terrible fate or punishmentwander: v. to walk without a goalturnip(s): n. a large root eaten as avegetable81Free LSL English Grammar Speaking Drill Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Drill_Book_PDF.html
  • 81. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netFORTH THURSDAY IN NOVEMBEROn Thanksgiving Day, families gather for atraditional turkey dinner as they give thanksfor life’s many blessings.Almost every culture in the world hasheld celebrations of thanks for a plentifulharvest. In the United States,Thanksgiving is a time for tradition andsharing. People gather with family andfriends on the fourth Thursday inNovember to enjoy a traditional meal andto give thanks for life’s many blessings.Even if family members live far apartthey will try to come together for afamily reunion at Thanksgiving.The American Thanksgiving holidaybegan as a feast of thanks in the earlydays of the British colonies in America,almost four hundred years ago. In 1620, aship named the “Mayflower,” filled withmore than one hundred people, leftEngland and sailed across the AtlanticOcean to the New World.Most of the travelers were from areligious group called “Separatists.” Theyhad separated from the Church ofEngland because they no longer agreedwith its beliefs. Separatists groups wereoutlawed in England, so they migratedto the Netherlands where they couldpractice their religion freely. Later theyreceived permission and funds fromEngland to establish a new colony in theNew World. They had intended to settleclose to other colonists along thesouthern coast. But they sailed off theircourse and landed further north in what isnow Cape Cod Bay, in the state ofMassachusetts. On December 21, 1620they arrived at a place on the bay wherethey found an abandoned Indian village.They settled there, and called the newhome Plymouth.Their first year in the new settlementwas very difficult. Most of the Pilgrims,as they called themselves, had come fromEnglish towns, and did not know how tolive in the wilderness. Many were fearfulof the forests. They were not skilledhunters because in England hunting wasonly for the aristocracy. Commonpeople were fined or punished forshooting game. They had arrived too lateto grow many crops, and their plantswere not well suited to the climate. Their82Skype Online Englishhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 82. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netseeds of English wheat did notgerminate in the new soil. In the firstyear, half the colony died from disease,and perhaps all would have perished ifthey had not received help and trainingfrom the native inhabitants, theWampanoag Indians.In March of 1621, a delegation ofWampanoag Indians, led by Massasoit,their military leader, arrived at thePilgrims’ settlement. Their purpose wasto arrange an agreement with the settlers.The settlers would be allowed to stay onthe Wampanoag land in exchange forprotection against a rival Indian group.Massasoit brought with him an Indiannamed Tisquantuman, who knew someEnglish and trans lated at the meeting.“Squanto,” as the settlers called him,stayed with the Pilgrims, and was veryimportant to their survival. He and otherIndians taught the settlers how to growcorn, a new food for the colonists, andshowed them crops that grew well in theunfamiliar soil. He taught them how tofish and dig for clams, and how to movequietly through the forest and hunt game.Throughout the year, the Wampanoagheld festivals to thank the earth for itsmany gifts. The Pilgrims were alsofamiliar with festivals of thanks atharvest time in England. By the fall of1621, the settlers were learning to survivein their new home, and they harvestedbountiful crops of corn, barley, beans,and pumpkins. They had much to bethankful for, so they planned a feast ofthanks and special day of prayer. Theyinvited Massasoit who came with ninetyothers and, according to legend, broughtturkeys and deer meat to roast with theother game offered by the colonists.There were also clams, fish, eels, cornbread, squash, nuts, cranberries, andother foods at the feast. From the Indians,the colonists had learned how to cookcranberries (small tart berries) anddifferent kinds of corn and squash. Tothis first Thanksgiving, the Indians aresaid to have even brought popcorn.A cornucopia of grapes, corn, and pumpkinsis a symbol that represents the firstThanksgiving.Until recently, school textbooks oftenpresented the story of the Pilgrims as onein which the Pilgrims cooked the entireThanksgiving feast, offering it to the“less fortunate” Indians. In fact, as weknow now, the feast was planned in partto thank the Indians for teaching themhow to live in the wilderness, and how toacquire and cook those foods. Withoutthe Indians, the first settlers would nothave survived.The Making of a HolidayColonists continued to celebrate theautumn harvest with a feast to givethanks. After the United States declaredindependence in 1776, Congressrecommended having one day of givingthanks for the whole nation. GeorgeWashington suggested the date83IELTS Test Preparationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/IELTS_Test_Preparation_Plus.html
  • 83. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netNovember 26. Much later Thanksgivingbecome an official holiday, largely due tothe efforts of Sarah Josepha Hale, a well-known editor of the mid-1800s. She hadcampaigned for many years to makeThanksgiving a national holiday. Finallyin 1864, at the end of the Civil War, shepersuaded President Lincoln, and hedeclared the last Thursday in Novemberan official Thanksgiving Day.Sarah Josepha Hale was a writer andwomen’s rights advocate who persuadedPresident Abraham Lincoln to proclaim anational Thanksgiving Day in 1863.In 1941, the fourth Thursday inNovember was proclaimed a federallegal holiday, giving most people a four-day vacation from work and school.Thanksgiving falls on a different dateeach year. Therefore, the President mustproclaim the date every year as theofficial holiday. In the proclamation, thePresident pays tribute to the historicobservance and the significance of thefirst Thanksgiving at Plymouth in 1621.In the Thanksgiving spirit of sharing,it is common today for civic groups andcharitable organizations to offertraditional Thanksgiving meals to thosein need, particularly the homeless.Communities take up food drives forneedy families during the holiday.In 1988, a Thanksgiving ceremony ofa different kind took place at theCathedral of St. John the Divine in NewYork. More than four thousand peoplegathered there on Thanksgiving night.Among them were Native Americansrepresenting tribes from all over thecountry, and descendants of peoplewhose ancestors had migrated toAmerica.The ceremony was a publicacknowledgment of the Indians’ role inthe first Thanksgiving 367 years before.We celebrate Thanksgiving alongwith the rest of America, maybe indifferent ways and for differentreasons. Despite everything that’shappened to us since we fed thePilgrims, we still have our language,our culture, our distinct socialsystem. Even in a nuclear age, westill have a tribal people.– Wilma Mankillerprincipal chief of the Cherokee nation84Speaking Practice Prohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Speaking_Practice_Pro.html
  • 84. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netSymbols of ThanksgivingThis traditional Thanksgiving dinner featuresa roasted turkey with herb dressing andgravy, mashed potatoes, cranberries, andgreen beans.Turkey, corn, pumpkins, squash, nuts,and cranberry sauce are symbols thatrepresent the first Thanksgiving. Thesesymbols, as well as depictions ofPilgrims and the Mayflower, are found onholiday decorations and greeting cards.Autumn colors of orange, red, brown,and yellow are often used in table or doordecorations, along with dried flowers,colorful gourds and “Indian corn.” Allof these items represent the harvest andthe fall season.Cranberries, which grow in bogs andmarshy areas in the New England states,are always on the Thanksgiving tabletoday. The tart berry had many uses forthe Indians. It was sweetened to make adelicious sauce; it was used to fightinfection; and the red juice was used as adye for blankets and rugs. The Indianscalled it “ibimi” or “bitter berry.” Thecolonists called it “crane-berry” becausethe bent stalk reminded them of a crane, abird with a long-neck.Glossaryplentiful: adj. a very large amount; morethan enoughharvest: n. the gathering of food cropstradition: n. custom, belief, ritual, orpractice, often from the pastgather: v. to join together; to meetreunion: n. meeting of a family or group,often to celebratefeast: n. great meal with a lot of goodfood, often for celebrationscolony(ies): n. a group of people living ina new territory with strong ties or links totheir parent country; the link is usually atthe level of the governmentNew World: phrase. name given by earlyexplorers to the Western Hemisphere andspecifically North Americaoutlaw(ed): v. to make illegalmigrate(d): v. to move, usually a fardistance, to a new place of locationfund(s): n. money; financial supportintend(ed): v. to plan; to have as apurposePilgrim(s): n. member of a religiousgroup that founded a colony in NorthAmericawilderness: n. wild area; naturearistocracy: n. royalty; nobility; upperclassfine(d): v. to charge a fee as punishmentgame: n. wild animals hunted for food orsportsuit(ed): adj. matched; appropriate forgerminate: v. to sprout; to start to grow,such as a seedperish(ed): v. to dieinhabitant(s): n. one who lives in aspecific place or regiondelegation: n. official group orrepresentatives85Free English Clubhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_Russian_Club.html
  • 85. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netrival: adj. competing; enemysurvival: n. ability to liveunfamiliar: adj. unknown; newclam(s): n. type of shellfish found buriedin the sand or mudbountiful: adj. plentiful; producing a lot;abundantbarley: n. a type of cereal used in makingsome beverages and soupspumpkin(s): n. large orange squash-likevegetabletart: adj. sweet and sour taste combinedfortunate: adj. lucky; blessed; successfulin part: prep. phrase. partlycampaign(ed): v. to push or advance acause; to promotepersuade(d): v. to convince someone todo somethingproclaim(ed): v. to declare; to announcepublicly pay(s)tribute: v. phrase. to honor with praiseand respectfood drive(s): phrase. an activity tocollect food for the poor and the home-bound, sick people tribe(s): n. ethnic,genetic, or language groupdescendant(s): n. a person proceedingfrom an ancestor;offspring of an ancestorancestor(s): n. relative who lived in thepast, such as grandparentacknowledgement: n. statement orgesture that shows appreciationdepiction(s): n. picture, drawing, orrepresentation of somethinggourd(s): n. squash-like plant; the driedhollow shell of the plant’s fruitIndian corn: n. phrase. dried corn withred, yellow, or blue kernels, often used asdecorationbog(s): n. wetlandThanksgiving MenuRoast turkeystuffed with herb-flavored breadCranberry sauce or jellyWhite mashed potatoes with gravyor sweet potatoesCornPumpkin pieMincemeat pie86English Course Informationhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Lessons_Information.html
  • 86. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netOver the River and Through the Woods87Grammar Reviewhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Review.html
  • 87. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netNovember 11A soldier pauses while placing flags in frontof every headstone at Arlington NationalCemetery in Washington, D.C.In 1918, at eleven a.m., on theeleventh day of the eleventh month, theworld rejoiced and celebrated. After fouryears of bitter war, the Armisticebetween the Allies and Germans wassigned. World War I, called the “war toend all wars,” was over. November 11was set aside as Armistice Day in theUnited States, to remember the sacrificesthat men and women made during thewar in order to ensure a lasting peace.On Armistice Day, soldiers who survivedthe war marched in parades throughtheir hometowns. Politicians andveteran officers gave speeches and heldceremonies of thanks for the peace theyhad won. President Woodrow Wilson, inhis Armistice Day proclamation inNovember 1919, said:To us in America, the reflections ofArmistice Day will be filled with solemnpride in the heroism of those who died inthe country’s service and with gratitudefor the victory, both because of the thingfrom which it has freed us and because ofthe opportunity it has given America toshow her sympathy with peace andjustice in the councils of the nation.Congress voted Armistice Day alegal holiday in 1938, twenty years afterthe war ended. But Americans realizedthat the previous war would not be thelast one. World War II began thefollowing year, and nations great andsmall again participated in a long andterrible struggle. After the Second WorldWar, Armistice Day continued to beobserved. But many veterans of WorldWar II, and later the Korean War, hadlittle connection to the First World War,and often felt that Armistice Day was notsignificant for them. They want- ed tomake a change in the holiday to includeveterans of other American wars, notonly World War I.88Free Trial Lessonhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Skype_Online_English.html
  • 88. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netIn 1953, townspeople in Emporia,Kansas, celebrated the holiday as“Veterans Day” in gratitude to theveterans in their town. Soon after,Congress passed a bill to re-name theday, and in 1954 President Eisenhowerofficially changed the name of thenational holiday to Veterans Day.Flowers and notes are left in personalremembrance at the Vietnam VeteransMemorial in Washing ton, D.C.Traditional Veterans Daycelebrations, in many towns and cities,may include ceremonies, parades,concerts and speeches. At 11:00 in themorning, in some communities,Americans observe a moment of silence,remembering those who have fought inwar. The President of the United Stateslays a wreath at the Tomb of theUnknown Soldier at the NationalCemetery in Arlington, Virginia,honoring all of America’s soldiers whohave fallen in war.After the United States’ involvementin the Vietnam War, the emphasis onVeterans Day activities shifted. Nowthere are fewer military parades andceremonies, and people honor the day ina more introspective and personal way.Veterans and their families gather at warmemorials such as the Vietnam VeteransMemorial in Washington, D.C., wherethey place gifts and stand in quiet vigil atthe names, etched in granite, of theircomrades, friends, and relatives who diedin the war. People often gather at othernational monuments such as thosededicated to World War II and the KoreanWar, as well as at Arlington NationalCemetery where U.S. veterans from anywar may be buried. Throughout theUnited States, families who have lostsons, daughters, and other familymembers to war, lay flowers and wreathsat local monuments and grave-sites, asthey turn their thoughts toward peace andthe avoidance of future wars.The trials and hardships of veteransare honored and remembered through theNational World War II (WWII) Registryand the Veterans History Project. TheWWII Memorial Registry is anindividual listing of Americans whocontributed to the war effort, comprisedof those who signed up for the Registryof Remembrances as well as from otherofficial U.S. government lists. TheVeterans History Project was created bythe United States Congress and signedinto law on October 2, 2000, by PresidentClinton. It is a project of the Library ofCongress and it relies on volunteers tocollect and preserve stories and accountsof U.S. veter-ans. The focus is primarilyon 20th century military conflicts in89Audio Grammarhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Alphabet_Audio.html
  • 89. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netwhich U.S. soldiers played a role: WorldWar I (1914–1920), World War II (1939–1946), Korean War (1950–1955),Vietnam War (1961–1975), Persian GulfWar (1990–1995), though it also includesmore recent conflicts. The Projectcollects oral history inter- views,memoirs, letters, diaries, photographs,and other original materials fromveterans of these wars.Surviving veterans of military service– today numbering more than 25 million– find support in organized groups suchas the American Legion and Veterans ofForeign Wars. On Veterans Day andMemorial Day, these groups raise fundsfor their charitable activities that supportdisabled veterans and their families.There are also organizations for veteranswho oppose war, such as Veterans forPeace, a national organization begun in1985 that works to raise public awarenessof the consequences of war and seekspeaceful alternatives to war. Byremembering veterans and all that theywent through, perhaps the leaders ofnations will strive to find peacefulsolutions to world problems, using waronly as a very last resort.This memorial of American servicemen raising the American flag was modeled after a World WarII photo taken by Joe Rosenthal in Iwo Jima on February 23, 1945.90Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 90. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netGlossaryrejoice(d): v. celebrate with joy; to behappybitter: adj. difficult to bear; distastefularmistice: n. an agreement to endfighting; a truceAllies: n. those nations (primarily theBritish Empire, France, and the RussianEmpire) that joined together inopposition to the Central Powers(Germany, Austria- Hungary, and Turkey)during World War Isacrifice(s): n. giving up of importantthingsensure: v. to make certain; to guaranteeparade(s): n. a public procession ordisplay of people, animals, and/orformations moving in a single linepolitician(s): n. an elected governmentofficialveteran: n. a member of the armedforces, now retired or dischargedproclamation: n. an official or publicannouncementreflection(s): n. the thought or opinion orremark made after consideration ofsomething heard or read or an eventsolemn: adj. seriousheroism: n. conduct having qualities of aherogratitude: n. thankfulnesssympathy: n. association (with);inclination (to)council(s): n. a committee or legal bodyappointed or chosen to carry out a set ofobjectivesparticipate(d): v. to be actively involvedinstruggle: n. a great effort; a fight; a warsignificant: adj. meaningful; importantbill: n. a proposed law in governmentobserve(d): v. to respect or follow a lawor customfallen: (adj) killed in battleshift(ed): v. to changevigil: n. watchful, solemn guardetch(ed): v. carve on stone or other hardsurfacewreath(s): n. an arrangement of flowersor leaves in a ring, used for decorationavoidance: n. act of preventingtrial(s): n. a situation that tests a person’sendurance or toleranceregistry: n. an official listcomprise(d): v. to consist of; to be madeup ofmemoir(s): n. a written account of one’smemory of certain eventsAmerican Legion: phrase. a nationalassociation of former servicemen andservicewomencharitable: adj. relating to assistance topeople in needdisabled: adj. a person having a physicalor mental condition that limits his or hermovement, senses, or activities91Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 91. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netDECEMBER 25A decorated Christmas tree towers overpresents waiting to be opened on Christmasmorning.Christmas is a joyful holiday that iscelebrated by most people in the unitedstates. Even though its origins areChristian, it has become a holiday seasonthat is celebrated in various ways bypeople of many faiths. The Christmasstory comes from the Bible. In the storyan angel appeared to shepherds and toldthem that a savior had been born to Maryand Joseph in a stable in Bethlehem.Three Wise Men from the East (theMagi) followed a wondrous star, whichled them to the baby Jesus. The WiseMen paid homage to the new child, andpresented gifts of gold, frankincense,and myrrh. Christmas has beenassociated with gift giving since the WiseMen brought these gifts to welcome thenewborn baby.On Christmas Eve, December 24,many people attend evening churchservices, often at midnight. Attention isfocused on the nativity scene, the storyof the birth of Jesus, and on the spirit ofChristmas. Christmas Eve services ofteninclude the singing of Christmas carols.On Christmas morning some familiesalso attend church services, but manyfamilies spend the morning at home,opening gifts and sharing a special meal.Some people visit friends and neighborson Christmas Day.Because many American families arespread out throughout the country, theChristmas season brings a lot of travel.Going home for Christmas is a mostcherished tradition so the days beforeChristmas are some of the busiest timesof the year at airports, train stations, andbus depots with people on their way tospend the holidays with their loved ones.Houses may be full of cousins, aunts, anduncles who might not see each other atother times during the year. Familymembers help in the preparation of thefestivities, including of course, making alot of food! The Christmas dinner tablelooks much like a Thanksgiving feast,with turkey or ham, cranberry sauce,potatoes, and pie. No Christmas iscomplete without lots of desserts, like92Free Larisa Newsletterhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Newsletter.html
  • 92. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netspicy fruitcake and cookies hot from theoven. A popular drink during the holidayparties and gatherings is eggnog, abeverage made of beaten eggs, cream,milk, sugar, spices, and may be brandy orrum. Plenty of eggnog and hot chocolateare often on hand for family and visitorsalike.Christmas Traditionsand SymbolsDecorationsDuring the Christmas season, many peopledecorate their houses with poinsettia plants.In preparation for Christmas, manypeople decorate their houses with coloredlights and hang a wreath of evergreenbranches, or other Christmas decorationson the door. Inside the house people oftendecorate with bright red poinsettia plants.Most families also put up Christmastrees. In some parts of the USA there areChrist mas tree farms where people cancut down their own trees. Most people,however, buy trees that have already beencut and are sold from Christmas tree lotson street corners or in shopping areas.The trees are brought home, set up in theliving room, and decorated with lights,ornaments, tinsel, and a star or angel atthe top. Under this tree, family membersand “Santa” will leave gifts.Santa ClausSanta Claus’ origin goes back toNorse and pre Christian mythologicalcharacters who were also associated withgift giving. The Norse God, Odin, rodeon a magical flying horse across the skyin the winter to reward people with gifts.In Scandinavian and other Europeancountries, Father Christmas, or SaintNicholas, comes into houses in the nightand leaves gifts for the children, to bringhappiness in the coldest months of theyear. The legend of Saint Nicholas mayhave developed from stories of a realSaint Nicholas, a priest who lived in the300s AD, and reportedly gave money to apoor family. Saint Nicholas became asymbol for gift giving among Christians.Later, Saint Nicholas was substitutedwith a non-religious figure, FatherChristmas, who was represented as akindly man with a red cloak and longwhite beard. Immigrants brought theidea of Father Christmas to the UnitedStates. His name was eventually changedto Santa Claus, from the Dutch “SinterClaas,” which means Father Christmas.Santa Claus took shape in the UnitedStates, and Americans made him acheery old gentleman with red cheeksand a twinkle in his eye. Americanchildren believe that Santa Claus lives atthe North Pole with his wife, Mrs. Claus,and his helpers, the elves. All year hekeeps a list of the names of children inthe world, and notes whether they have93Writing Skills Programhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Writing_Skills_Program.html
  • 93. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netbeen good or bad. He decides whatpresents to give to the good children. Heoversees the manufacturing andwrapping of the presents by his helpers.Santa Claus supposedly gets his ideasfor the toys from the millions of childrenwho write to him at the North Pole,explaining what they would like forChristmas. Children also find SantaClaus at shopping malls across thecountry. They sit on his lap and tell himwhat they want. Of course, their parentsare probably nearby listening in as well.Santa Claus places gifts under the tree and inthe stockings hanging over the fireplacemantel .On December 24, Christmas Eve,Santa hitches his eight reindeer to asleigh, and loads it with presents. Thereindeer pull him and his sleigh throughthe sky to deliver presents to children allaround the world, that is, if they havebeen good all year. On Christmasmorning, children can’t wait to open theireyes and see what Santa left for themunder the Christmas tree. In manyfamilies, on Christmas Eve childrenprepare a glass of milk and cookies as asnack for Santa. Of course, in themorning the snack is gone, and theyknow that Santa was there. Santa Clausexists only in our imaginations. But he,Saint Nicholas, and Father Christmas allrepresent the spirit of giving.Gift-GivingGiving gifts is a major Christmastradition. Gifts are bought or made for allpeople. Often school children will makegifts in their classrooms for their parentsor grandparents. The gifts are wrappedand placed under the Christmas tree to beopened on Christmas morning. Somechildren are so excited on Christmas Daythat they wake up at the crack of dawn topeek into the living room. It is hard forthem to wait until after breakfast beforeopening the gifts.Nowadays people often complain thatChristmas has become too“commercialized,” especially in largecities. Shop owners begin advertising anddecorating for Christmas as early asOctober in hopes of selling more goods.Children demand more from Santa Clausbecause manufacturers and retailerssaturate the media with advertising.Children’s toys have become morecomplex and expensive. Many kids askfor pricey electronic or sports equipment,while the trend for adults is also forlarger, more expensive gifts. Somepeople believe that the origin and spirit ofChristmas has been lost.Every year human-interest storiesappear in the media reminding readers ofthe origin of Christmas. Shelters for thehomeless and hungry appeal for money94Stories With Audiohttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Short_Stories_Audio.html
  • 94. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netor gifts for those who are in need.Members of organizations like theSalvation Army dress up as Santa Clausand stand on the sidewalks collectingmoney for their soup kitchens. Citypolice and other groups supervise a “Toysfor Tots” drive, in which people donatenew toys for needy children. Companyemployees may take up a collection for aspecial charity or a family in need. All ofthese efforts are meant to emphasize theimportance of giving – rather thanreceiving – during this holiday season.Christmas StockingsLong ago, children hung their ownstockings, or socks, over the fireplacemantel. Santa entered down the chimneyand left candy and presents inside thesocks for good children. Bad childrenreceived a lump of coal. Today thetradition of hanging up a stocking iscarried on, but now many of thestockings are large sock-shaped fabricbags decorated in Christmas red andgreen and holiday designs. Stockings areoften personalized with the owner’sname. In some households all familymembers, young and old, have Christmasstockings. In others, only the childrenhang up their stockings. On Christmasmorning, everyone eagerly opens theirstockings to find small items bringingChristmas cheer.Christmas CardsAnother important custom ofChristmas is to send and receiveChristmas cards that express thesentiment of the season. Some cards arereligious in nature; others are non-religious, or even humorous. Often thecards – or letters and photos – giveinformation about family events from theprevious year. Americans send Christmascards throughout December to friends,family, co-workers, and even businessclients. Christmas cards often include agreeting for the New Year, wishing therecipient, “Merry Christmas and HappyNew Year.” Today many people choosecards that say simply, “Happy Holidays”or “Season’s Greetings,” which areinclusive of all faiths.Christmas EntertainmentSongs, poems, stories, andperformances are a regular part of theChristmas season for many families. Onewell-known poem is “The Night Be foreChristmas” written by Clement Moore in1823. American children often listen tothis poem before they go to bed onChristmas Eve, in anticipation of Santa’svisit.A favorite Christmas story is “AChristmas Carol” written by Britishauthor Charles Dickens in 1854. Dickens’story spreads the idea of sharing andcompassion. It tells about a poor familywith little money to live or eat well, andno money to pay for a doctor for theirson, Tiny Tim, who is disabled and walkswith crutches. Yet they considerthemselves lucky for what they do have –a close, happy family and generousfriends. Reading excerpts from “AChristmas Carol” is an importantChristmas tradition for many Americanfamilies. Theater and televisionproductions of “A Christmas Carol” arepopular entertainment at Christmas time.Another popular Christmas production is95FlashCards listhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/All_FlashCards_List.html
  • 95. www.larisaschooloflanguage.net“The Nutcracker,” a ballet by Peter IlichTchaikovsky which tells the story of achild’s dream. “The Nutcracker” is aholiday favorite for people of all ages, asmany children dance in the cast.Special Christmas songs, or carols,are sung and heard throughout theholiday season. Carolers fromcommunity groups or churches may gofrom door to door through neighborhoodssinging Christmas carols. There aredifferent types of carols: old traditionalsongs such as “Good King Wenceslaus”and “Deck the Halls;” there are religioussongs like “Joy to the World” and “OLittle Town of Bethlehem;” and modernAmerican songs like “I’ll Be Home forChristmas.” Christmas carols, bothreligious and secular, capture the spiritand excitement of the season.Glossarycelebrate(d): v. to honor by a ceremonyor festivityBible: n. the holy book of the Christianreligionangel: n. a spirit, usually thought to befrom heavenshepherd(s): n. a person who takes careof or watches sheepsavior: n. one who saves or bringssalvation; in Christianity, Jesus Christstable: n. a farm building where animalsare keptMagi: n. wise men from the East whocame with gifts for baby Jesuswondrous: adj. remarkable;extraordinaryhomage: n. respect; honorfrankincense: n. material from a specialEast African or Arabian tree that makes afragrant smell when it is burnedmyrrh: n. material from a special EastAfrican or Arabian tree which is used inmaking perfumesnativity scene: n. phrase. an exhibit ofstatues or figures which show baby Jesusin the manger with Mary, Joseph, theshepherds, and the Magicarol(s): n. a song of praise or joy,especially for Christmascherish(ed): adj. held dear; appreciatedfestivity(ies): n. celebrationspicy: adj. containing aromaticsubstances such as cinnamon and nutmegwreath: n. a ring or circle of leaves,flowers, ribbon or other items, often hungon the door as decoration at Christmastimelot(s): n. a piece of land with the usespecified by an adjective; i.e., parkinglot, used car lot, Christmas tree lot,empty lottinsel: n. shiny, thin strands of silver orgold colored paper used to decorate theChristmas treeNorse: adj. Norwegian, from or relatingto Norwaymythological: adj. not having a factualbasis, relating to a myth or storysaint: n. a title given by church (usuallyChristian) to represent one of God’schosensubstitute(d): v. to be replaced96Free LSL English Grammar E-Bookhttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Free_English_Grammar_Book.html
  • 96. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netcloak: n. a long, loose outer garmentwithout sleevesimmigrant(s): n. a person who movespermanently to another countrycheery: adj. friendly, happytwinkle: n. sparkle; bright spot like a starelf(ves): n. small mischievous or helpfulcreature in mythologyoversee(s): v. to supervisehitch(es): v. to connectreindeer: n. deer-like animal living incold regionssleigh: n. vehicle with runners pulled byanimals over snowexist(s): v. to live; to beimagination(s): n. picture or idea in themindspirit: n. an attitude or intentioncrack (of dawn): n. the earliest light ofthe day; daybreakpeek: v. to take a quick look as if from aplace of hidingcommercialize(d): v. to exploit for profitretailer(s): n. a person who sells itemsdirectly to customerssaturate: v. to fill up completelypricey: adj. expensiveshelter(s): n. safe place; havensoup kitchen(s): phrase. a place wherefood is served free of charge to people inneeddrive: n. organized event or effort toraise money for a causemantel: n. an ornamental shelf over afireplacelump: n. irregularly shaped piececoal: n. black ore used for fuelpersonalize(d): v. to make personal byadding the owner’s name or initialssentiment: n. feelinghumorous: adj. funny; amusingrecipient: n. person who receives a giftor awardanticipation: n. looking forward,thinking of the futurecrutches: n. support used as a walkingaidgenerous: adj. givingproduction(s): n. staged performance orshowcaroler(s): n. person singing Christmascarols at Christmas time, generally in agroup standing outside or going door todoor in a neighborhoodsecular: adj. of or relating to worldlyconcerns; non-religious97Free LSL 101 Grammar Worksheetshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/English_Grammar_Workbookpdf.html
  • 97. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netThe Night Before ChristmasTwas the night before Christmas, when all through the houseNot a creature was stirring, not even a mouse;The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there;The children were nestled all snug in their beds,While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads;And mamma in her kerchief, and I in my cap,Had just settled down for a long winters nap,When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.Away to the window I flew like a flash,Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snowGave the lustre of mid-day to objects below,When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer,With a little old driver, so lively and quick,I knew in a moment it must be St. Nick.More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name;"Now, Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!On, Comet! on Cupid! on, Donder and Blitzen!To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!Now dash away! dash away! dash away all!"As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky,So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,With the sleigh full of toys, and St. Nicholas too.98Free LSL English Grammar Book of Phraseshttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/PDF_1000_Phrase_Book.html
  • 98. www.larisaschooloflanguage.netAnd then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roofThe prancing and pawing of each little hoof.As I drew in my head, and was turning around,Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot;A bundle of toys he had flung on his back,And he looked like a peddler just opening his pack.His eyes -- how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow;The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath;He had a broad face and a little round belly,That shook, when he laughed like a bowlful of jelly.He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself;A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread;He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,And filled all the stockings; then turned with a jerk,And laying his finger aside of his nose,And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose;He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.But I heard him exclaim, ere he drove out of sight,"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night."99Free LSL English Grammar Book of Slanghttp://www.larisaschooloflanguage.net/Slang_PDF_eBook_LSL.html

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