Early in my teaching career, I attended a presentation by former San Francisco 49ers Head Coach Bill Walsh where he focused on the importance of extracurricular activities in students’ lives. Taking place in the 1990’s, Coach Walsh lamented the cancellation of many school activities for budgetary reasons and pointed out that kids are not motivated to come to school solely for academic classes. Many only find their motivation to come to school because of music, sports, debate, or some other reason.
Thirty-plus years into my career as a middle school educator, I do not delude myself that our students are eagerly coming to school just for Algebra I, Mandarin, and social studies. I realize the importance of debate, Lego Robotics, after school sports, and the many other extracurriculars we offer at the Middle School. So I was delighted this past month when several of our extracurricular activities took center stage at 888 Turk.
Mr. Crow’s Cabaret Club performed “Anniver” to an appreciative student audience. This months-long activity engaged a large number of students and provided not only a first acting opportunity for many of our kids, but also opportunities to learn about leadership, organization, and publicity. This performance gave us a sneak peek into the dramatic productions which will be possible at the new 19th Avenue campus.
Coach Ron Morris’ Girls’ Varsity Basketball Team won the San Francisco Athletic League championship in a hard fought game where the Firedragons had just six players on the bench against a much larger (12 player) San Francisco School team. The Class of 2023’s Aili M. drained a three-point come-from-behind buzzer-beater to cement the win!
Under the guidance of Rong Pan (parent of Anushka C. ’21 and Roshan C. ’25), CAIS MATHCOUNTS team took second place in the 40th Annual Golden Gate Chapter MATHCOUNTS Competition this past weekend. Competing against over 80 competitors from 15 other top San Francisco public and private schools, their second place finish earned them a spot in the Northern California State Championship at the University of the Pacific on March 25.
Extracurriculars cannot happen without adult volunteers so I want to give a shout out to all of the Club and Zhang Heng leaders, the after school sports coaches, and our auxiliary program instructors. Well done!