Clubs & Activities

mocktrial2013.jpg

A wide variety of clubs and activities meet weekly at lunch time. All are student-run and organized with the assistance of a faculty advisor. While some activities are product oriented, like the yearbook and Earthquake, the Upper School newspaper, others are primarily for students with like interests to meet for fellowship and fun. As a result, our clubs are divided into four main categories: affinity, mission, publications and social. All of the clubs allow students valuable opportunities to experience leadership and practice organizing, planning, and bringing ideas to fruition. Two years ago we added a Mock Trial club pictured here that made it to the semi-finals in the 2013 regional competition.

Our school community is greatly enriched by the students’ energies and talents in co-curricular activities.

Affinity

AFFINITY GROUPS

AHLAN WA SAHLAN (WELCOME)
Faculty Advisor: Malik Mubashshir
Description: Ahlan wa sahlan (Welcome) is a club devoted to the celebration of Middle Eastern culture through food, religion, and tradition. We will discuss current events and developments in the Arab world, and work to educate and support the Middle Eastern community, both locally and internationally.

ASIAN STUDENTS ASSOCIATION
Faculty Advisor: David Mraz
Description:
Students celebrate Asian culture.

BASE
Faculty Advisor:
Brandon Jones
Description: A support group for male students of color in the Upper School. BASE stands for Brothers for Academic and Social Enrichment. BASE fosters a sense of brotherhood and family by creating an environment where minority students can share their unique life experiences, views, ideas and culture with other students who are similar to them. It's a stimulating club, well worth the lunch period you spend. You will leave with more friends and a greater sense of belonging in the greater GFS community.

CHAVERIM
Faculty Advisor: Meg Goldner Rabinowitz
Description: Chaverim is a support and discussion group for issues related to Judaism for Jews and non-Jews alike. Anyone who is interested in finding out more about Judaism or discussing the many issues surrounding it and the state of Israel is encouraged to join.

FOCUS
Faculty Advisor: Allen Drew
Description: Fellowship of students and faculty interested in Christian spirituality, and how it relates to life, culture and relationships. All view points are welcome. Pizza lunch is provided.

LATINOS UNIDOS
Faculty Advisor:
Kate Hanssen
Description: Latinos Unidos is an affinity group for students of Latino descent and their allies.  The group aims to embrace and support the Latino community here at GFS, while also connecting with the larger Philadelphian and global Latino communities.  Discussion, community service projects, and the promotion of social, cultural, and educational awareness of Latino heritage are the means by which we do our work.

MULTICULTURAL STUDENT UNION
Faculty Advisor:
Mirangela Buggs, Malik Mubashshir
Description: The MSU strives not only to give our community a greater respect and understanding of racial and cultural differences, but also to encourage others to embrace and celebrate these differences. To facilitate these goals, the MSU acts as an open forum and discussion group to enlighten others and ourselves about racial, ethnic and culture-related issues.

SAGA - SEXUALITY AND GENDER ALLIANCE
Faculty Advisor: Cheryl Bruttomesso, Brian Riggs
Mission: SAGA's mission is to provide support for students of all sexual orientations. The group meets weekly to discuss questions or concerns pertaining to sexuality, gender and associated issues. It also meets outside school for social occasions, sometimes with groups from other schools. Attendees agree to confidentiality. No serious issue is out of bounds.

SISTAHS
Faculty Advisor: Kim Lewis
Description:
Sistahs is an affinity group for female students of color from various backgrounds in grades 9 -12 providing opportunities for leadership, discussion, support and personal growth.

SUPPORT FOR POSITIVE BODY IMAGE
Faculty Advisor:
 Maryanne Rawlings
Description: Student-initiated support group for young women concerned about promoting healthy attitudes about body image. Within themselves, within the group, and within the greater community.

WOMEN'S AFFINITY GROUP (Lady Club) 
Faculty Advisor: Meg Goldner Rabinowitz and Sara Gordon
Description: A women's affinity group, base in discussion of feminism. We explore both the local and global culture of being a woman.

Mission

MISSION CLUBS

ADMISSION OFFICE STUDENT GUIDES
Faculty Advisor: Brandon Jones
Description: Student tour guides lead visiting parents on a tour of the school during the academic day and at Open Houses. The group is comprised of 10th, 11th and 12th grade volunteers who have agreed to assist the school in this facet of the application process.

BIG SIBS (Directed Independent Study Minor)
Faculty Advisor: Anne Gerbner
Description: Big Sibs work one period a week in Lower School classrooms. Each Big Sib is paired with a Lower School student and acts as an emotional mentor, tutor, small group teacher in reading or math, or as a general assistant in the whole classroom. Some Big Sibs also may teach specific lessons, in dance or environmental projects. Big Sibs earn a Directed Independent Study minor credit for their work in the classroom.


CLASSICS CLUB
Faculty Advisor:
LucyBell Jarka-Sellers
Description: The Classics club provides an extracurricular opportunity for students interested in classical languages, literature, and/or culture to gain access to the wider world of scholarly and artistic work influenced by the classics. After-school events may include, but will not be limited to, lectures at local colleges and universities, trips to museums, screenings of classically inspired films, and tea parties and other social gatherings. All students, regardless of language experience, are welcome.

COMMUNITY ACTION
Faculty Advisor: Kathy Paulmier
Mission: The Community Action Committee is a group that seeks to increase GFS's involvement in the neighborhood, and the neighborhood's involvement with GFS.

DRAMA
Faculty Advisor: Lisa Burns
Description: Through drama classes and plays in fall, winter and spring, students can experience a variety of dramatic opportunities. It is not necessary to be taking a drama class in order to audition for a play. Students who are interested in stagecraft (lighting, set design, and multimedia) work on drama productions and assembly setup.

E.P.A.C.S. (Environmental Political Action Committee of Students)
Faculty Advisor: Chris Singler
Description: C.C.P.A.C.S (Climate Change Political Action Committee of Students) is an expanding network of groups of students at high schools across the country devoted to combatting global climate change through political action.  We are the GFS branch. C.C.P.A.C.S’s political action takes the form of exerting pressure on elected officials; that exerted pressure involves primarily the lobbying of & working with both elected officials and their aids, and, secondarily, written pressure in the form letters and petitions.  Other less frequent forms of pressure are the rare rally/protest or endorsing candidates and working on their campaigns when deemed productive.   

ENVIRONMENTAL ACTION CLUB (EAC)
Faculty Advisor: Ian Van Wert
Mission: Trying to make our community a more environmentally friendly place by instituting a compost system, spreading awareness and reducing our carbon footprint.

GLOBAL CONNECTIONS
Faculty Advisor: Kathy Paulmier
Mission: Global Connections is an organization that focuses on providing accessible education to children around the world while raising awareness of the plight of the many children for whom an education is not readily available. Our group raises the awareness of the GFS community through the distribution of flyers and videos shown at club meetings. In the past, we have also raised funds on behalf of children in Ghana, the Dominican Republic and China. We are always open to the opportunity to help any country in which there is a need.

GLOBAL HEALTH CLUB
Advisor: Alyson Solomon
Description: The mission of Global Health Club is to learn about the medical world through volunteer work, and to use that knowledge to aid people in need of medical care both in the United States, and on a worldwide scale. 

H2O FOR LIFE
Faculty Advisor:Chris Singler
Mission: The goal of the club is twofold: 1) to raise awareness about water related issues; and 2) to partner with another school in a water stressed part of the world, and raise money to provide them with what they need (e.g. a well, indoor plumbing, etc.).

HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP
Faculty Advisor: Bob Rhoades
Mission: Our goal as a group at GFS is to educate and raise awareness in this community regarding human rights and human rights abuses locally, nationally and internationally.

LENGUA ATADA(Tongue Tied)
Advisor: Margie Spaeth
Description: Spanish conversation club

MOCK TRIAL
Faculty Advisor: Rhonda Jones Levy
Description: Mock Trial is an inter-scholastic way to explore interest in the legal world and the justice system, as well as hone verbal and delivery skills, through competitions (actual mock trials with witnesses and attorneys) coordinated by the Pennsylvania Bar Association.

Model UN
Advisor: John Ceccatti
Description: Model UN (MUN) is a club at GFS that fits in with the established activity that is MUN; participating in MUN conferences with MUN clubs at other schools.  As the name suggests, at Model UN conferences, often focusing on a specific issue, usually individuals or sometimes pairs represent countries and they act as those countries in a meeting of the UN general assembly, ending in the passage of a resolution.

PEER TUTORING
Faculty Advisor: Tracey Spinka
Description: Peer tutoring provides an opportunity for students to help other students and receive assistance from other students. Meeting times are arranged on a personal basis. Students offer their specific talents to the student leader, who matches them with students who would like to receive tutoring. Students may also be referred by a teacher.

S.O.S.  (Save Outstanding Species)
Advisor:
Description: Do you love animals? Do you want to protect all endangered species from extinction? In this club, we will work to help animals. We will send letters to companies that are ruining the habitats of animals, raise money to send to programs helping to save endangered species, and learn cool facts about animals of our choice. Together we will spread the word about animals and the destruction of their homes in creative ways. I hope that all of you will join us as we spread the message of the Lorax and help to save endangered species.

SIGN LANGUAGE CLUB
Advisor: Heather McKelvey
Description: In the Sign Language Club we will do a wide range of things. We will learn numerous signs and we will also learn about the culture. We will watch different videos about deaf people. We hope to arrange to get together once in a while with students from the Pennsylvania School for the Deaf in order to have conversations in sign language.

STUDENT ADVISORY COUNCIL (SAC)
Faculty Advisor: Gen Nelson
Mission: The Student Advisory Council is composed of four elected representatives from each upper school grade. Our mission is to serve as liaison between the student body and administration. We relay students' ideas, opinions and needs to the faculty and administration in an effort to improve the quality of student life. We also frequently sponsor fun events such as fall and spring jams to generate excitement and school spirit.

STUDENT RELIGIOUS LIFE COMMITTEE
Faculty Advisor: Lucy Bell Jarka-Sellers
Mission: We want our school to be a place where students and teachers of diverse religious and philosophical backgrounds feel free to explore religious, philosophical, and spiritual questions with each other and to express fully who they are in the context of this our Quaker school. We are students of diverse religious, philosophical, and spiritual backgrounds-- including atheists and agnostics-- who want to work with students and faculty to make GFS a place that's conducive to religious /philosophical/ spiritual exploration and self-expression.

TECH THEATER
Faculty Advisor: Ken Marini
Meeting Information: As scheduled

TIGER PRIDE
Advisor: Katie Bergstrom Mark
Description: This club is dedicated to promoting school spirit at GFS.

TV NEWSCAST CLUB
Advisor: David Mraz
Description: The idea of this club is to record all of the major events at GFS in the month, and create a 5-10 minute newscast that could be shown during Monday morning assembly or posted on the GFS website. The newscast would resemble a standard newscast that you would see on a local news channel.

WRITING CLUB
Advisor: Sara Primo
Description: This club will create a space for students to express and share their love for writing. This club functions as a writing group to which students can come with prepared pieces of writing. The writing will be read aloud to the group and discussed at length. Discussion of the writing will be constructive. Discussions will be led by either a student leader or the author of the work being discussed if he or she wishes to help shape the discussion. This club will promote a love of fiction, poetry, and language. Students in this club will be encouraged to submit work to Polyphony and possibly read work at Coffeehouse. Hopefully this club can create a community of young writers, all equally dedicated to helping one another learn and grow in their writing.

Publications

PUBLICATIONS:

ANNO
Faculty Advisor: Susan Lowry, Della Micah
Description: The Upper School student yearbook. Students learn management and production skills, and produce a high quality product at the end of each year.

EARTHQUAKE
Faculty Advisor(s): Anne Gerbner, Sarah Detwiler
Description:Earthquake is the only Upper School student-run newspaper (the Middle School also has a student run online newpaper called The Corner) and is published monthly. The newspaper is generally 8 pages in length and includes news, opinion, editorial, reviews, features and sports sections. Earthquake's mission is both to inform and to entertain, as well as to provide a voice for anyone at GFS who wants to write. Read More

POLYPHONY
Faculty Advisor:
Adam Hotek
Description:
The annual GFS art and literary magazine provides a creative forum for student poetry, prose, short stories and visual arts. Read More

Social

SOCIAL CLUBS

ART CLUB
Faculty Advisor: Megan Culp
Description: Art Club leads GFS's participation in the annual Sketchbook Project in conjunction with the Brooklyn Art Library and is a place to exercise the love of creating through various independent art projects

BRIDGE CLUB
Faculty Advisor: Matt Zipin
Description: We play bridge. 

CHESS CLUB
Advisor: Della Micah
Description: We play Chess.
 

COFFEEHOUSE
Faculty Advisor: Brett Turner
Description:
Coffeehouse is a casual, open venue for any type of performance. An open-mic night that takes place three weekend evenings a year, Coffeehouse showcases the best of the student body's diverse array of talents. All students are invited to sing, play music, read poetry or display any other talents.

COMMUNITY JAM 
Advisor: Chris Singler

COOKING CLUB
Faculty Advisor: Tom Myran
Description: Cooking Club offers students a chance to explore the culinary world and learn more about how to cook.  Each week, students choose a menu for the next week, and students provide the ingredients and recipes students of all levels of culinary experience are welcome.

DIVORCE SUPPORT GROUP
Faculty Advisor: Elissa Sunshine
Description:
Divorce Support is a student-run support group for students with divorced, separated or unconventional families.

DUMBLEDORE'S ARMY 
Advisor:

FASHIONISTAS
Faculty Advisor: Elissa Sunshine
Description: The goal of the Fashionistas is to educate our members about what it truly means to be a fashionista. This does not consist of buying pre-made outfits out of magazines. A true fashionista is someone who has the freedom and courage to express herself/himself. Our group will deeply explore the fashion world by holding fashion debates, discussing fashion finds and spunky DIY's. These discussions will then be recorded in our blog at the end of the month. Together our club will experiment on how to reflect individual personality in daily outfits, and we will take trips to thrift stores, help at the Salvation Army, and hold clothing drives.

FINER THINGS CLUB
Advisor: Sara Gordon
Description: This club is partly a book club and partly devoted to learning etiquette for fun. We sponsor "Formal Fridays," select Fridays when all students are encouraged to dress up for school.

FITNESS ROOM LIFTERS
Advisor:
Description: We train, We lift, We get stronger. All are welcome.

GFS SKI AND SNOWBOARD CLUB
Faculty Advisor: Jeff Fetterman
Description: Originally, this club was intended to be an avenue for students who like to ski and snowboard, but do not often get the chance to. We want to give those students the opportunity to get on the mountain and indulge their love for skiing and boarding. We want to make it easier for people to ski and board more often. This means fundraisers for financial aid, regular trips to the Poconos with organized transport, and hopefully one big trip out west/up north. When the winter season ends, we will spend the spring organizing rock climbing trips, hikes, and other manners of outdoor sports.

HARDBALL
Faculty Advisor: Malik Mubashshir
Description: A political discussion group.

PHILANTHROPIC TRUST
Faculty Advisor: Mina Fader
Description:
Students manage an investment portfolio of $20,000 and donate the profits to selected local charities.

PINS AND NEEDLES:
Faculty Advisors: 
Amy Celentano, Rosario Manion
Description: Pins and Needles is a sewing/fashion design club. We will do some simple sewing techniques like sewing on buttons. People could learn how to use a sewing machine and do some hand sewing. Some weeks we would do some designing. We will also work on some sewing projects to be donated to charity.

XKCD
Faculty Advisor: David Williamson
Description: XKCD club is a computer-oriented technology and security awareness club.

News

No news is currently available.