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Welcome to CDAT 16-17!

posted Jul 18, 2016, 3:54 AM by Michael Reilly
It's about this time of year that many of our new students start peeking at the site, they're excited to get going, and that's awesome!  Also, check us out on Facebook as we try and improve our sharing there too:

As summer settles into the school year, first make sure to spend another couple of days at the pool, take a walk through the woods (not many Pokemon there, most are near things with signs), and more.  But as the school year does start, get ready to enjoy your time with us!  Yes, enjoy school.

How will our students be "doing CDAT" this year?  We are all pretty excited about the schedule we've worked out, here's a summary:

  • 9th grade - we will be together the first 3 hours of each day.  You have all elected Chemistry, Language Arts, and either Engineering or Digital Tech.  We are going to create a more efficient schedule, more like college, where you are in less "lecture time" and more "project time".  We do projects all year long, and the key is to connect the learning to what you enjoy.  Yes, even Pokemon GO if you want.  Our long term goal is to get you ready for college and/or career, so we place a massive emphasis on trust.  If we can trust your work efforts, you have more choices, so be trustworthy!  Also, we want to show you cool things in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math), to inspire you to pursue what you love.  Start off right, try new things and deliver on time, and you'll have a great time in school!

  • 10th grade - You will be with us the second half of the day, and some other.  That is, your Science and Language Arts will be back-to-back, so we can use those 3 hours however we want.  You will also have project time during the first half of the day, and we expect that you will have either the second year of your elective pathway, or maybe you have started a new pathway.  Either way, you have both the project time AND elective time to use for integrating your science and language arts.  This is a big test year, as you have Milestones, Gateway, and some have AP too.  We can do this!

  • 11th grade - This year is different for you, for all of us.  We are calling this the "Junior Capstone".  Many schools have a Senior Capstone, but it's kind of too late, as we want something on your college apps, and something to intrigue internship providers.  Senior Year is too late.  This is much more independent, it's on YOU.  What cool thing do you want to do?  Win Science Fair?  Run a major event?  Invent something?  Come on, pursuing patents is not new to CDAT students anymore!  This is even more important first semester, as you know you'll want time second semester to study for AP classes, maybe take the ACT/SAT for the first time.  This should be something you are excited about, that keeps you awake at night in a good way.  If you don't know what you want to do, aim bigger!!  Most of you are in your third year of a pathway, so you can use that.  But you also might want to do Science or Math worth publishing, or create a cool short story infused with STEM.  Let's end this year with some amazing accomplishments!

  • 12th grade - are you still here?  Seriously, the point of high school is to take 8th graders and get them ready for college and/or career.  Our hope for our Seniors is to pursue Dual Enrollment or an Internship.  If we accomplish that, then we feel great about our jobs.  We also know that these are not options for some of you, due to transportation, etc.  For those who are with us, we want to make 12th grade a "Service Year".  As senioritis evolves, what is motivating?  How about leaving a legacy in some way, of giving back?  Serving others in some way is our goal for you this year.  Not only does it feel good, it could make a great college application essay!  It is a great networking opportunity for jobs!  There are all sorts of ways to serve, so make sure it is a type you love.  Don't volunteer for data analysis if you prefer to be outside and sweating.
For all joining us this year, we are so excited to get going!  Remember, CDAT is a community, it's not just teachers teaching and students responding.  We want input from all, including our parents and community.  Because we are a project-based environment, we welcome input from all, to refine our system, but also bring ideas and opportunities to our students.  Only getting better with time, this year is going to be great!!!