Interactive English Classes Welcome Historical European Martial Arts


Lauren Ingle, Features Co-Editor

Thursday, February 6th, Gaffney High School welcomed Aaron Shober, the founder and owner of Sword Carolina, a HEMA studio in Fountain Inn. One of his goals is to form clubs, not only in high schools, but colleges as well. This ties in well with the English IV class study of “Beowulf.” The teaching of German Wrestling, or Ringen, is a connection to the fight between Beowulf and Grendel.

Connor Hillyer, a junior at NEXT High School in Greenville, assisted Aaron with the German wrestling. Connor started his journey in middle school, and now wrestles on an adult level. He has also started a HEMA club at his local high school. They plan on competing at Sword Carolina’s annual tournament this year.

Amy Bright, a English IV teacher at NEXT Sigh School, taught the basics of sword stage combat. She likes to incorporate stage combat and HEMA into her curriculum to help make learning fun, and to better the understanding of the students.

During the second block class, everyone received an alert on their phone, saying that there was a tornado warning. Everyone stayed calm and ignored it to begin with. About three minutes later an announcement came over the intercom letting us know that we needed to follow safety procedures. It cut the class short, but in the end the weather conditions did not keep students from enjoying the presentations; third block still got to participate and the day went on smoothly.

The students were very engaged and had lots of fun watching and participating in these activities.