Friday, June 10, 2016

Student Feature Friday - Students Start Chess Club at Nipmuc

Juniors Dylan Applegate and Kayma Snook
Student leadership manifests itself in many ways at Nipmuc. One of the most powerful ways our students can make an impact is to establish a club or activity that gets our students excited about coming to school. In this week's "Feature Friday" post, I'm excited to share the leadership of Dylan Applegate and Kayma Snook who collaborated to start a chess club at Nipmuc. In a short period of time, they've been able to get our students excited about chess, welcoming students of all ability levels to this new group that meets each Monday. I'm thrilled to feature them and excited to see how our chess club grows in the years to come!

Dylan Applegate
Q: How did you come up with the idea for chess club?
A: Kayma and I often played chess in French when we finished our work. (Here is where there is some debate...) One day, after destroying her in the easiest chess match of my life, I proposed the thought of starting a club. From there we went to the office and asked what to do.  We then asked Mr. MacIsaac to be our advisor and printed flyers - all in the same block.

Q: What are some of the strategies you have used to introduce students to chess and get them excited about your meetings?
A: Aside from spamming amongst my friends, “Every Monday, Mr. MacIsaac’s room, 2:00 to 3:30 - Be there!” I've also tried to recruit some friends from other grades. Kayma brought most of our members in by convincing her huge network of senior friends to come and play.

Q: What was the highlight of this year’s chess club?
A: I'd say the highlight of this year’s chess club was the first two meetings, when the room was packed full of people from all grades talking, having fun, and playing chess. Since then the attendance has settled down considerably, but club is still a ton of fun.

Kayma Snook
Q: What has been the greatest challenge and success in getting chess club started at Nipmuc?
A: The greatest challenge in starting chess club was getting the word out and getting all types of people interested in chess. Our club welcomes people of any skill level or no skill level at all. While most chess clubs require some experience, ours does not and it’s been challenging trying to convince beginners that they can have fun and also benefit from the club.

Q: How would you like to see chess club grow next year?
A: In terms of the club’s growth, I would like to see many new members next year. Both seniors and underclassmen with all skill levels or just anyone with a curiosity to learn or observe are welcome!

Q: What was the highlight of this year’s chess club?
A: The highlight of this year's chess club was the time we had about 20 in attendance. We all just hung out and listened to music while the advanced players taught the beginners the basics. People of all different ages, groups and skill levels came and everyone got along very well.


I am thrilled to see our chess club get off the ground so successfully. Thank you, Dylan and Kayma!

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