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A Look at GESM's Afternoon Clubs

by Shadin Kitma

There was an air of excitement among students about the recently introduced afternoon clubs. Having heard about the expanded options from the previous year, I was curious to see the variety on offer.

Among the diverse choices, one option caught my eye – woodworking. Well, that wouldn't be my first choice, I thought, assuming students would find it dull and laborious. Maybe it's a fallback option for students who couldn't secure spots in popular clubs like art or football.

I couldn't have been more wrong. There were more sign-ups for woodworking than there were spots initially. And most of them were from the primary grades -- and quite equality distributed among genders, too.

I couldn't resist asking one of the young participants, a rather slim girl, when I passed by her on campus. "You really like woodworking?" I said with barely veiled incredulity. Her response was a quick and confident "yes". Asked why, she answered, "because my dad does that a lot."

Reflecting on this revelation, I felt embarrassed. I learned later that European fathers -- particularly Germans -- have a reputation for doing a lot of DIY woodworking at home. That these 8, 9, 10-year-old GESM students picked this club as a means to connect with their parents, was particularly touching.

Whether other students have similarly meaningful reasons for picking their clubs, I wouldn't know. But I never thought I'd feel this proud to be in a school that offers woodworking.

Dull and laborious, apparently it is not.

Below are photos from the clubs, not only from woodworking:


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