Upper School Clubs

Ad Fontes seeks to offer clubs and activities that engage student interest, enhance student fellowship and further the intellectual and spiritual development of our students. There are clubs for all interests and skills – arts, science and technology, community service, public speaking and debate, and Latin.

The Commission (Grades 7-12) – Senior Faith Knight
The Commission is a student-initiated club that meets during lunch to talk about practical ways to share your faith and the gospel, how to be a leader in school and out, and how to lead with Christ as your foundation. We will be using books which draw beautiful illustrations of what it looks to like to be a graceful and faithful leader. All students have the opportunity to lead the discussions and cannot wait to continue growing the atmosphere of the school shift into one of boldness and beauty!

Cooking Club (Grades 9-12) – Senior Beth Phillips and Mary O’Donnell
A student-initiated club by Beth Phillips, AFA Senior, who will be teaching the skills to cook a meal- breakfast, lunch or dinner- on their own. Students will learn how to use a chef’s knife to cut vegetables, meats and more! They will learn which spices and flavors meld together beautifully . Are you headed off to college soon? The cooking club will start you off with an edge as you strike out on your own. You may still eat ramen, but you’ll know how to spice it up with eggs, veggies and more. You don’t need to have any cooking experience- just a willingness to learn!

Debate (Grades 6-8) –  Zach Rallo
Do you find yourself constantly arguing about which superhero is best?  Whether or not water is wet? If the give-and-take of argument and debate excites rather than terrifies you, consider joining the debate club. We will teach the fundamentals of academic public forum debate, how to construct convincing arguments, and how to win formal debate competitions. We will improve our public speaking abilities through a variety of exercises. Ultimately, we will participate in three debate tournaments against schools in our area on Saturdays in early December, early February, and late April.

Latin Club (Grades 5-12)William Carey and Rachael Stahr
The ORIGINAL Ad Fontes Club! Latin Club is for students who have an interest in classical antiquity beyond what they study or learn in a classroom. Latin Club will focus on Certamen, a competitive quiz game among teams of AFA students to reinforce the Latin language, classical history, and classical culture and mythology – all topics befitting an educated individual properly instructed in the Western Liberal tradition. When our teams are trained, we will have the opportunity to compete with other Certamen teams in Northern Virginia and to attend the annual VJCL (Virginia Junior Classical League) Convention in Richmond, where the students will be able to participate in many activities, including Certamen, lectures, and classical presentations. Latin Club will also celebrate appropriately the memorable events of the Roman calendar – the birthday of Rome, the crushing of the Catilinarian conspiracy, the celebration (or mourning, depending on one’s political views) of the assassination of Caesar and the demise of the Republic. Apart from learning and social interactions, Latin Club is, most importantly, about having FUN and FOOD!!!

Mock Trial (Grades 9-12) – Kerry Lockhart
The high school mock trial program is designed to encourage students to explore constitutional concepts, courtroom protocol and basic litigation skills. All the schools in a state are presented with the same mock case, usually modeled from a real-life case. Students must possess a thorough knowledge and understanding of the Federal Rules of Evidence, the National Rules of Competition, and the Case Materials. The school must be prepared to prosecute and defend the case against teams from other high schools in a real courtroom before real judges. The students learn how to distill facts from opinion, strategize a plan for victory and then write both direct and cross examinations. They learn a scaled down version of the Federal Rules of Evidence and must use them to make objections and defend against objections, based on the law. They are also required to present their case, including five-minute opening and closing statements. This legal sport brings together many distinctive aspects of classical and Christian school program including the ability for students to decipher source documents, and the study of logic and rhetoric. This requires regular attendance, extreme dedication, and consistent diligence. We work all year to polish our skills, our knowledge, our dramatic flair, our presentation, and our ability to remain calm under pressure. The skills gained from Mock Trial are palpable and pay dividends in the student’s overall academic capabilities.  The season will include a regional competition on February 2, 2019, a state competition in Williamsburg on March 2-3, 2019, and a national competition for the state winner on May 16-18, 2019.

Peru Missions Club (Grades 8-12)
Ad Fontes has established an ongoing school partnership with Refuge of Hope in Peru. AFA was the first ever school partner with the Refuge! The Missions Club plans the annual missions trip and coordinates programs to increase awareness and support of Refuge of Hope at Ad Fontes and in the community.  The Refuge has near 40 teen boarding students with physical disabilities or from at-risk situations, and 400 day school students from the community. The Peru Missions Trip is in June each year and provides construction work, classroom support, Vacation Bible school, and builds friendships. This is a life changing trip!

Play Reading Club (Grades 7-12) – Linda Mathwin
The Play Reading club is for students who cannot get enough plays! Lovers of the theatre or of literature meet together to share lunch in a joyful, relaxed setting and read the selected play. Laughter, joking, and curiosity characterize this club; we enjoy the rich beauty of the written word. Plays read recently include: A Winter’s Tale, Antony and Cleopatra, Electra, King Lear, and The Cherry Orchard. This year’s plans include The Importance of Being Earnest and King John, along with an evening outing in November to see King John performed at the Folger Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C.

Techne Society (Grades 7-12) – Bill Carey
How does a lawnmower work? When I was young I had no idea, so I asked my grandfather. He said, “Let’s find out!” Two hours and dozens of bolts and screws later, the dismembered guts of a lawnmower lay before us, and I had learned about pistons, spark-plugs, gears, valves, motors, and blades. My grandfather taught me that what one person creates, another can understand, and that some things are best learned by doing. The Greek poet Homer recognized three great virtues: courage, cunning, and techne. Techne, the oft–overlooked third Homeric virtue is the root of our word “technology” and means something like “craftsmanship” or “skill with tools”. As with every virtue, Techne requires cultivation and practice. That practice is best done in community, where the learning and skill of each can aid the learning and skill of all. There are two cultures of technology today. One culture is the culture of distraction and entertainment. The other, less common culture is the culture of creation. The Techne society will encourage its members to be a part of the culture of creation, not part of the culture of distraction.

Theatre (Grades 7-12) – Beth Strachan
You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view, until you climb inside his skin and walk around in it.” While Atticus Finch used those words in To Kill a Mockingbird to teach young Scout a lesson about getting along with others, it’s a wonderful word picture of acting as well. Acting, in part, is climbing inside the skin of a character and walking around in it. Theatre is an entire group of people thinking, feeling, and looking – being someone else for a time, and convincing the audience to believe they ARE someone else. This year in theatre we will work at this craft and showcase our talents with a full-scale production of Thornton Wilder’s beloved classic, Our Town. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1938, Our Town is considered the most popular American play ever written. In preparation for the production, we will explore not just the art of acting, but the other elements of stagecraft, including costumes, make-up, stage-management, props, set design, etc.

Yearbook, (Grades  7-12) – Julie Docherty
The Yearbook Club will be responsible for putting together the AFA Yearbook. Students will be involved in envisioning the yearbook theme and page layout and be assigned individual responsibilities including photography, page content, page layout and other tasks to complete the yearbook by April.