Extracurricular Activities Change Lives at AHS
October 24, 2022
There are many different sports and extracurricular activities one can be involved in at AHS. These groups, clubs, and teams that almost every student is a part of can be a life-changing experience for them.
Coach Bryce Smith
Coach Bryce Smith has been involved in extracurricular activities ever since he was 11 years old when he joined the boy scouts. He didn’t start school sports until he was a freshman in high school, in which he did football, track, show choir, and the ultimate frisbee team. Smith did football all four years of high school, track until his junior year, and ultimate frisbee as an intramural sport at Iowa State University off and on.
One low of extracurriculars is the time commitment, Smith has spent hours upon hours coming up with practice plans and more. “Mrs. Smith is not terribly fond of me being gone for so long,” said Smith. Extracurriculars have many highs including being up and moving, being presented with challenges from an intellectual standpoint, and building community within the school. There is one that stands out the most to him, which is team comradery. Smith likes seeing kids who you normally wouldn’t see “in pads or on the track” together.
Smith has learned so much from doing these extra activities. He learned delayed gratification, paying your dues, taking your time, and doing the right thing. Smith always tells his kids that “success is the product of doing the details right.”
In the end, Smith wanted to round out his personality by doing these extracurriculars. If he didn’t do these activities, he wouldn’t know what he would be doing now “had I not been in sports.” Doing sports has made him realize that he is happy about where he’s at. “I’m happy with where I am now, I’m happy to continue doing what I’m doing whether that’s in education or coaching.”
According to “The Life-Changing Power of Extracurricular Activities,” “Extracurriculars are vital because they impart a wide variety of other concepts and knowledge that we don’t always get to communicate in the classroom.” This explains that when you are in an extracurricular activity, you will gain more knowledge and different skills that you wouldn’t get just from school.
If you want to start a club, you can gladly do so. “If a club doesn’t exist, you might need to start it. This can be quite a bit of extra work on your part, but you get the added bonus of exposing your students to something completely new and original.” You can get creative with what you want to start, just ask a friend and teacher to help get you started.
This is exactly what Sponsor Randall Simpson did for Game Club. Devlyne Sunderman wanted to start up a game club three years ago. “Devlyne seemed very passionate about the game club,” said Simpson.
Game Club consists of many different games, including video games, chess, board games, tournaments, and holiday parties. At these holiday parties, the club watches a movie and has snacks to have a fun time. To add even more fun, there are prizes if you win the game that the club is playing today. For example, the Game Club is shooting to win a $15 McDonald’s gift card today.
To get involved in the game club, all that you need to do is show up to Simpson’s classroom on Thursdays at 3:30 p.m. There, you can sign up for Google Classroom to get all the action and information.
Game club is a very fun, supportive, and “inclusive” group to be a part of. Because of this group of kids that maybe don’t have a place where they feel like they belong, they can always come to the game club. “A lot of these kids [shy kids] in your classroom are in-game club where they break out of their shells.” For Simpson, the game club is refreshing and enjoyable.
Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer: Senior Jada Jensen is a varsity starter for all four seasons of sports. She is on the volleyball court, basketball court, oval track, soccer field, and softball field. Jensen has been involved in extracurriculars ever since her mother could get her into the YMCA Youth programs.
“When I was younger, it was a way of my mom getting me to make friends easily, meeting new people, and socializing at that age,” said Jensen. As she got older, it has been the upperclassmen who have motivated her throughout high school. By seeing them contribute to the team and work hard, Jensen knew that she was going to be a motivator too when she was an upperclassman.
One downfall of playing sports is the amount of free time that you get. “I don’t have a lot of free time, but I have made it work between school and sports,” said Jensen. She has learned many life lessons throughout the years of playing sports, including managing her time, school comes first, and “what you put into it is what you get out of it.” Using these life lessons, she is weighing out the options of continuing her sports career for dueling basketball and soccer at the college level.
Callee Pellett is enthusiastic about FFA and farming. Pellett’s roles are showing cattle, delegating for the district voting, soil judging, horse judging, livestock judging, conducting meetings, and much more. She has been a part of FFA since she was in eighth grade. “I wanted to do FFA solely for the purpose of showing cattle,” said Pellett.
Then, in Pellett’s freshman year, her teacher Eric Miller put her on the conducts team. The reasoning behind Pellett joining FFA was because of her family that was a part of it. Watching her cousins Caroline and Connor Pellett as well as watching her dad farm made her interested in FFA. Pellett was also motivated by her other cousin Claire Pellett. Cl. Pellett was already involved in FFA and Ca. Pellett wanted to be a part of it too. Before Ca. Pellett made friends with the people she has now, it was a comfort “to have someone that I know in FFA.” Ca. Pellett plans on pursuing Agriculture after high school and then coming back to farm. What she has learned from FFA and farming is to get out of her “shell” and not hesitate.
Henry Knudsen is glad that he is a part of the Student Council. Knudsen is in the regular Student Council, an executive, and the treasurer. When he got involved in the Student Council, he wanted to know what was going on in the school. Knudsen has met so many people and has had a lot of opportunities from the Student Council. “My friends that have been in it in the past said how much they enjoyed it and how far they got doing it,” he said.
Knudsen and the Student Council have some free time between all the dances and other activities going on, which helps get prepared for the next event. There is a small amount of pressure when it comes to doing Student Council because of “making sure you are doing things by the book.”
One characteristic describing the student council is teamwork. “Every person has a vital part to put into something no matter what it is,” said Knudsen. All the events that take place have a lot of time and effort put into it and everyone has a role to play. He has become more social and not afraid to ask questions from being a part of the Student Council.