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WSA's Chess Masters Visit Silverwood School to Teach (and Play) the Game of Kings

January 20, 2016
By Lionel Pummell

Katie Komar, WSA 8th Grader, supervising a beginner's chess matchChess anyone? West Sound Academy’s Strategy Gaming Club took a field trip to Silverwood School last Thursday with the goal of teaching chess to elementary school students. Silverwood - an independent school for children in Kindergarten through 6th grade - had a group of students waiting, ready to learn how to play the classic game.

WSA's faculty advisor for the Gaming Club, Lionel Pummell, in coordination with Silverwood’s Business Manager Sara Adams, set up this opportunity for students from the two schools to come together. The common area at Silverwood was alive with thoughtful energy and intense concentration during the meeting. West Sound Academy’s students taught chess strategy to the younger children while the classic pawns, rooks, and knights were maneuvered around many boards.

River Gsellman, WSA 8th Grader, giving advice to two young game-playersJon Torgerson, Silverwood's Head of School, was happy to welcome the WSA group. “Silverwood School is honored to partner up with the students at West Sound Academy in offering our students an opportunity to learn and fine tune the game of chess.  I find that any time schools are able to collaborate in a natural and authentic way it is always a benefit for the students.  It was delightful to see the focus and fun that happened on Thursday afternoon,”  he said.

Twenty students, both from Silverwood and local homeschool families, came to learn and play. West Sound Academy sent eleven volunteers to the event: Peter Silvernale, Stuart Parkington, Aidan Phelan, Boaz Adams, Emily Bradford, Katie Komar, Lucius Vigeant, River Gsellman, Chase VanDerek, Micah Adams and Matt Thornell.

With the success of this first experience with mentoring and learning, Lionel and Sara are planning to have the visit of the WSA chess masters be a monthly event.