A rousing Open House


Katlyn Lee and Nadia Lee

Large crowds of students filled the courtyard of the foreign language building, pairs of salsa and merengue dancers took their positions, and a drone floated above it all. This was the scene at Diamond Bar High School’s first Open House in five years.

“We haven’t had Open House at DBHS for several years, so it was time to showcase our students’ work and talents so parents could have a better idea of what they have accomplished this year. We want to create a lively festival atmosphere celebrating all languages in the plaza,” Spanish teacher Christine Buccola said.

The event, held last Thursday evening, featured each of the school’s main departments providing activities for curious parents. The science classes displayed various exhibits of student projects and demonstrations, while in the math department, students tested their knowledge in the Math Matrix, in which they tried to answer math questions at various levels. In another section of the school, the history teachers hosted a jeopardy game called the Brain Bowl where students were required to remember historical events and people.

For those who wanted to observe and relax, the musical Regional Occupation Program Entertainment Academy hosted a David Bowie show, where they played rock music, including some of his songs like “Space Oddity,” “Changes,” and “Suffragette City.”

Music departments also took part in the event, as dance held open rehearsals in the dance room for passing guests and Choir performed various songs next door. With the help of orchestra, Theatre also held open rehearsals for those interested in drama.

Students and parents also witnessed Moot Court in action, which took place in Diamond Bar’s library. The audience watched quietly as the students presented their arguments on a First Amendment issue.

On the other side of campus, DBHS’ foreign language classes provided various entertainments through dances, singing, and games for attendees.

With all of the teachers working together, several games and activities were planned. For example, competitions based on vocabulary, grammar, and culture were conducted within each Spanish level class. The winners of each round were awarded with participation points for their class. A choir of Spanish students then performed a duet by Jennifer Lopez and Pitbull, along with other traditional songs and dances.

Meanwhile, French teacher Tony Tietz had his classes reenact “Les Misèrables.” In order to protest against the new Common Core testing, Tietz rewrote the lyrics of “Look Down, and prepared his students to reenact parts of the play.

Toward the end of the event, the language students gathered for the Grand Finale and sang a verse from Les Misèrables’ “Do You Hear the People Sing?” in their respective language.

To Tietz, Open House was a chance for DBHS’s languages classes to show what they’ve learned and done since the beginning of the school year. It was an opportunity for the students to appreciate the diversity and culture that originated from each language and share it with others.

“To celebrate languages, being together, it is the only time all year that we get to see what the other languages are up to, for all of the French students to interact, and to banter with the community about studying world languages at DBHS,” Tietz said.