If you're a blog fan, this page will be the attempt to reflect on the trials and tribulations as we get CDAT off the ground.
This will also feed to Tweet, where you can follow us at #CDATLHS
Feedback is welcome, I believe in "crowdsourcing".
CDAT students: the time to move has arrived! On Wednesday, June 5, we will move CDAT to our new location, on the second floor. Anyone want to help? Email email@example.com to let me know, and let's start at 9am. If all goes well, we should easily finish the major stuff in a day. Woohoo!!
It happens every year: the days after Spring Break fly so fast, and the last days zoom past. Boom, Summer! But what a great year it was: going to the Emmy's to pick up some High School Program Awards, we'll see student work on PBS this Fall, we had our largest 9th grade class yet, our first 11th grade class and US History, the deeper integration with Science, and so many other things.
With all of that, how did the test scores hold up? How about maybe our best year ever! How's this:
- 9th Grade Language Arts End of Course Test (State test): LHS
pass rate is 93%, CDAT is 99%
- 9th Grade Biology End of
Course Test: LHS pass rate is 87%, CDAT
- 10th Grade Science Gateway Test LHS pass rate is 80% CDAT is 92%
- 11th Grade Language Arts End of Course Test: LHS
pass rate is 96% CDAT is 100%
- (LHS Exceeds rate is 38% CDAT is
- 11th Grade Social Studies End of Course Test: LHS pass rate is 87% CDAT is 100%
- (LHS Exceeds rate is 55%
CDAT is 70%) Did you see that, 70% Exceeds!!!
And now, yes on the afternoon of the last day of school, we start getting ready for next year. We've already started planning our time together. And it's not just high school planning! We congratulate our InTECC students from White Oak Elementary on an amazing year, and welcome the Lanier Middle School TWIST program to the innovative ways of our cluster!
Soon we move CDAT into our newer, larger space, and we will continue our combination of great learning with impressive accomplishments. Thanks to our advisors and students for letting us craft a fun and effective school, 2013-2014 is going to be even better!
The Atlanta-Journal Constitution visited CDAT last week to investigate how we are working with Georgia Tech in a National Science Foundation pilot. The goal? Reinvent how programming is taught, of course. Just another day in CDAT...Check out this link!
The DATty Awards are our recognition for outstanding work during the CDAT year, for all levels and technologies. We will be getting together on May 15, starting at 7pm (probably going to 8:30pm) for this fun event!
The agenda will be simple: our rooms will be open starting at 7pm for students to show off what they've been doing. Then at 7:30pm will move into the Theatre for our main event, the DATty awards! We anticipate these awards running until about 8:30pm, maybe a bit earlier.
We've had many things to celebrate this year, it should be a very fun evening! AND, we will reveal our new space as well (we're not moving far, just getting bigger and better!).
(Note: we won't be having food/beverage due to the large size, so please eat ahead of time. Also, dress is casual.)
Questions? Email Mike Reilly - firstname.lastname@example.org
CDAT was buzzing this morning, with many cameras and reporters around! Young Guru, sound engineer for Jay-Z, was in the CDAT room to visit with our students. Our CDAT 9th graders are piloting a new curriculum for computer programming, written by the Georgia Tech Earsketch
program, and supported by Young Guru
The programming concept of Earsketch is simple and effective: teach programming to students using music. That is, their computer code actually generates music. The logic and mathematical parallels between music and programming just make sense! So, our CDAT students are the pilot group for this National Science Foundation project, and it was just a surprise treat to meet one of the greatest sound engineers of our generation.
Young Guru spoke so passionately about the need to pursue studies in technology, that music is fun and good, but we need to push ourselves to learn software development and/or technology. The demand for programmers is so strong, and software controls so much of what we do in the world. The students who can get a head start on software development or other engineering at an early age will have a huge advantage. Thanks Georgia Tech and Young Guru!
Wow, is it really going to be the class of 2017?!
For those who applied to CDAT's new 9th grade, you're in!! We are lucky to have a few more seats than applicants, so we can take you all!!
Here's what will happen next: in the next week or two, Lanier Middle Students will receive confirmation sheets. If you have been listed as a CDAT student, the confirmation sheet will list "Placeholder" as a class. This is just a way to identify a CDAT student, not a name of a class.
If a student is listed with "Placeholder", but does not want to participate in CDAT, they can drop this during the add/drop period, before March 28.
If a student would like to add CDAT, we only have about 10 seats left. To be added to our roster, the student needs to email a CDAT application (see below) to email@example.com. The next 10 applicants will be accepted. You should also add this during your add/drop period on your official paperwork, once you receive confirmation from Mr. Reilly (I will usually respond to your email application within the hour, I'm online too much!).
If we have more requests/applications than seats, we will start a waiting list and notify people right away about that status.
Questions? Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Due to some ambiguities, we have extended the CDAT app date until Wed., 2/20.
What an amazing turnout at our AP/Elective Night at Lanier! Our current CDAT students were so excited to share what they do, and it was so refreshing to see so many interested students.
If you are interested in signing up for CDAT, here are the steps to take:
- Choose the CDAT option on the 9th Grade Registration Form. (It's between those big boxes.)
- Please submit the CDAT Application to your middle school teacher, or email it directly to email@example.com
- This application needs to be received by Mr. Reilly by Wednesday, 2/20/13. (via email, in person, any method you'd like)
- This is just a short response to have you really consider if CDAT is for you.
- We are NOT evaluating your past grades or your essay grammar/writing skills.
- Here's the application if you need it (click here).
- And that's it!
- 9th grade registration was 2/13/13 at Lanier Middle School.
- We receive a list of students that have elected CDAT.
- This list of students will be checked against received applications on 2/21/13.
- IF there are more applicants than seats (we anticipate approximately 90 seats), then we will do a lottery pick (random selection) from the pool of applicants.
- IF we have some students that have not been selected via lottery, they will be placed on a waiting list if seats do become available. (We don't know if this will even happen, just getting ready for it.)
- All decisions SHOULD be finalized by Monday, 2/25/13, and we appreciate your patience in any delay.
Some folks wanted our presentation placed online. Here it is below, as well as a presentation that is more "data-centric" about our test scores and other details.
In our first year, we had 30
brave souls sign up for the experiment called CDAT. In year two, last year, about 50 new 9th grade student chose to play in our world. And then, in our third year that started this past fall of 2012, almost 80 new 9th grade students jumped in with us!
We've been recognized in articles and a book, spoken at numerous conferences, and our methods have been copied at a few schools. Our test scores consistently beat the averages, and our student products have been so amazing! (3 of our students were talking to Autodesk's Leader of 3DS Max last week!!!)
In short, we're here to stay, as we feel we are helping students connect to the areas of engineering and entertainment (games, movies, music), while doing great with academics and project-management skills.
So, we're going to try something new this year: an application. However, in keeping with CDAT principles of creativity and efficiency, it's going to be simple and hopefully enjoyable. Scroll down, the application is attached at the bottom of the page.
Also, take a look at our Questions page, and please visit us on Feb. 12, the "AP and Elective Night" at Lanier High. We will have students, examples, teachers, and plenty of time to answer your questions.
We can't wait to meet you, talk about CDAT, and share how excited we are about this program found only at Lanier!
Sorry about the delay since the last post, it's been that busy, with great stuff!
In December, we presented at STEMGeorgia
as one of 3 model programs for STEM education in the State of Georgia. That was one week after we presented our model at the Autodesk University
conference in Las Vegas.
Academically, we wrapped up the semester in usual fashion, with scores in our core classes above the school and district averages. This was not completely surprising to us, but we were a bit nervous since we doubled in size this past year!
And some of our students began some very innovative projects, which should come to fruition soon. Walter Biscardi, owner of Biscardi Creative
and a well-known figure in the video editing world, took a chance on our kids. They are modeling a 3D animation for an upcoming documentary, which should air this March (sorry, can't tell you more yet!). We will also be in numerous competitions, and many of our CDAT students are also part of our inaugural FIRST Robotics team
, the "Mechanical Bulls".
Registration will be here soon, and we anticipate continued growth in the program. Therefore, we have written our first application which will be posted on this site, and other locations. To be very clear: students will NOT be judged on grades or any other filter. The application will be available very soon.
(This will begin frustrated, but end happy, I swear.)
Okay, so we launched our YouTube Channel ForgotToStudy and were using it as a tool to teach US History, Language Arts, and Entrepreneurship through technology, with TONS of 21st century skills built in. We had about 300 views almost immediately, even earned $10 in ads to spark excitement! Then, Google shut us down. They claimed we performed "click-fraud" or some other violation, no ads allowed anymore. After 4 days!
Did we? Certainly not intentionally, unless one of our kids/supporters got overzealous. The most frustrating part is that this is a learning opportunity for our kids in so many ways, and Google's refusal of our appeal is a refusal to learn from mistakes. Even more frustrating is that I can't get in touch with a living Google person to understand this educational project, to help us teach this lesson. AND, they claim their data points to click-fraud, but they don't have enough data to tell me why. You have enough data to make a decision, but not enough to tell me why you made a decision?!
So, we will dust ourselves off and take a look at our options, like any good business would do, which is a lesson in itself. Perseverance!! (Can you feel this turning more positive?)
Also, starting off the Thanksgiving Break, we found out that Brayan Byrdsong won GaTech's Fall Scratch Programming Contest - Individual Game Category (see his game here: http://scratch.mit.edu/projects/blbbrayan/2893230
) Brayan is a very smart, high-energy individual, and decided to do this all on his own, and won out of 23 entries. Amazing skills!
And finally, it's off to the Autodesk Conference to present the cool things our kids are doing. I will be at au.autodesk.com and share at their Education Conference on Monday, along with some really cool people in the educational technology world. Our use of the Autodesk software to teach non-technology subjects is of high interest to Autodesk, a unique technique that's only found in CDAT!
So, we're very thankful for all of our cool tools, our space and freedom to create and learn at Lanier. While we've had a setback in our YouTube channel experiment, it's just so cool that we're even doing a YouTube channel as schoolwork!! There's only more great things to come the rest of this year, in 2013, and in our long-term future. Enjoy the week, and be sure to keep the NYC/NJ area folks as well as other needy people in your thoughts and prayers. You don't have to look far to see people in need. Hmmm, maybe CDAT should do something about that....