In today’s world, students must prepare themselves for a wide range of college and work opportunities. All students want to lead a happy life and enjoy the good things the world has to offer. Our students will certainly be provided a quality education. This year I am working with our junior high students as they learn and master a wide range of 21st Century Skills.

In this year’s “Technology Applications” class, students will learn and master various topics associated with computers and technology.

Monday, July 31, 2017

U.S. Air Force/FIRST Leadership Experience

After a great week at the Air Force Academy, I returned home excited about the new school year coming up.  Being on a military installation, I was reminded of all the great times I had while I myself served in the military.  

A slide show tells the story of our awesome experience.

School's approaching soon and changes are in store for "Principles of Information Technology".  Stay tuned for information and details coming your way soon.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

U.S. Air Force Academy and FIRST (Day 4)

The last day of our FIRST experience found us back at the U.S. Air Force Academy for a briefing by the academy's "Admission's Office". The application process is pretty strait forward for anyone who has a desire for a FREE four year university degree.  Upon graduation, you will become a commissioned officer and work for one of the most technically advanced branches of the military service.  A "Four Lenses Exercise" workshop helped us better understand our personality and character and how it effects relationships with other teachers and most importantly, our students.

We ate lunch at the "Falcon Club" before we visited the "Academy's Chapel".  We left the chapel and headed for a wooded area for a team building "Ropes" course.  Due to rain and lightning, we were only able to complete one exercise.  For our final activity, we stopped at the "Visitor Center" and "Academy's Book Store".

We ended our last evening of this experience with dinner where we all had a chance to socialize and we were presented with parting gifts. The information learned through this experience is priceless.  An experience like none other and not soon to be forgotten.

(Admissions Presentation)
(Four Colors Exercise)

(U.S. Air Force Academy Chapel)

(Lunch at the Enlisted/Officers Club)
(Ropes Course - Trust Building)

(Our last evening together)

Major General Garrett Harencak is the Commander of the U.S. Air Force Recruiting Service.  He greeted us Sunday evening, briefly visited with us each day of the event and shared dinner with us to end the experience; "What a leader."

(US Air Force FIRST Experience 2017)

Pillars of Leadership, Robotics

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

U.S. Air Force Academy and FIRST (Day 3)

We started this morning in Polaris Hall at the U.S. Air Force Academy and listened to a great presentation on "Human Behavior" by Betiza Erzin.  We played a quick game of "Rock, Paper, Scissors".  Not ever having played before, somehow I ended up winning all 3 of 4 rounds making me the Grand Champion. Is that beginner's luck or what?

Next, we were driven to Schriever Air Force Base.  Cell phones and cameras were not allowed in the facility area that we toured and we had to leave them in the vans, so there are no pictures for this part of the day.  We had a great lunch at their Dining Facility which has won several dining facility awards.  Lunch was awesome.

After lunch, we visited the 50th Space Wing where we learned about the mission of the squadron.  We learned how important the 50th Space Wing is to our national security.  Each door we passed through had to be entered quickly because security only allows 15 seconds to enter and the door must be closed or alarms will go off and the police and guys with guns are summoned.  We then visited the 2 and 4 SOPS where we learned how they track satellites. (lol!)

We visited another section of the facility with lower levels of security.  I now can safely write about what we saw without fear of getting in trouble!  This group of Airman are responsible for our GPS satellites. They monitor, track, maintain and adjust satellite orbits when needed.  We than traveled to the 527th Space Aggression Squadron. This is a unit responsible for training those who are involved in "Satellite Communications Jamming".  All in all, very educational and an eye opener.  Because of the need for engineers across our country, STEM training is encouraged in many aspects of a Cadet's education.

Polaris Hall ( at the Air Force Academy), was specially designed and built in 2015 to house the "Center for Character and Leadership Development". The leaning tower (1st picture) points to the North Star to symbolize the unwavering commitment to the "core values" believed and held by all academy cadets.  A special room is used by cadets to hold hearings for students who have violated the core values.  It is up to this panel of cadets to decide who must leave the academy and who will be allowed to stay and continue their cadet training.

(Polaris Hall)
(Cadet's Hearing Room)

Pillars of Leadership, Robotics

Monday, July 24, 2017

U.S. Air Force Academy and FIRST (Day 2)

Today was an exhausting day due to the high altitude and long walking distances.  We arrived at the academy for a presentation by retired Col. Gregory Tate on "Character and Leadership Development".  After a short welcome by Col. Gary Packard the Vice Dean of the Academy, we had lunch at the cadet's dining facility.  We toured the Academy's Applied Mechanics Lab, the Aeronautics Engineering Lab and had a "Question and Answer" session with several U.S. Air Force Cadets.  We ended our academy visit with a demonstration of a NAO robot.  The last 2 things on today's agenda was a visit to the "Gardens of the Gods" and dinner at a 100 year old school turned into a Brewery and Pub.

(Colonel Tate - Center for Character and Professional Development)

(Colonel Packard - Vice Dean of the Academy)

(Academy Grounds)

(Applied Mechanics Lab)

(Aeronautics Engineering Lab)

(Garden of the Gods)
(IvyWild - 100 year old school turned into a business)
(NAO Robot Demonstration)

Pillars of Leadership, Robotics

U.S. Air Force Academy and FIRST (Day 1)

Our first evening was spent sharing dinner and  getting to know the 24 participants in our group.  STEM teachers came together this week from just about all over the country.  I learned that NORAD is not too far away.  The control center for monitoring the airways and launching our nuclear arsenal if we ever need to.   The antennas can be seen at the top of the mountain. 

Tomorrow will be a fun filled day visiting the U.S. Air Force Academy for presentations, a tour of the cadet's engineering facility, lunch at their dining facility, a visit to the "Garden of the Gods" and dinner in evening.

(NORAD -North American Aerospace Defense Command)

(Great Reception and dinner)

Friday, July 21, 2017

Two days away . . . .

Sunday I depart to Colorado Springs for my FIRST / U.S. Air Force Experience.  I have not flown since October of 2001; one month after 911.  While a little anxious, I am looking forward to a great experience.  I will be posting a few pics here and there over my 3 day stay. Stay tuned.

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