Dr. Byron Daniels uses chess to teach young men about life
July 6, 2011
Benjamin Franklin once compared life to chess, noting the struggle, competition and "good and ill events" involved. At Washington Montessori, Dr. Byron Daniels does the same for young male students in a group called "A Hero's Journey." For more than five years, this giving community member has met with two groups of fourth- and fifth-grade boys during their time at lunch and recess, and while Daniels has taught them to play chess, he's also demonstrated the benefits of good decision making.
It's not all games in their club - the boys review their grades and behavior reports with this volunteer. As a result, Principal Sharon Jacobs says they've seen tremendous growth in these students as a result of their relationship with their mentor.
According to school counselor Patricia Taylor, who nominated Daniels for the award, "The boys who have participated in A Hero's Journey program have become more conscious about good decision making skills, and many of them have improved their grades and behavior as a direct result of participating in this program."
As Volunteer of the Month, Daniels will be presented with a $50 gift card, courtesy of Rice Collision Center. This recognition represents the first month of sponsorship from Rice. Rice officials surprised the outstanding volunteer with the award in a ceremony at the school today. Daniels' photo will hang at Washington Montessori and Rice Collision Center, as well as at the district's central offices. In addition, he'll be recognized by the Board of Education at its July 12 meeting.
Do you know an outstanding volunteer? Nominate him or her to be the next GCS Volunteer of the Month - just click here.