• DATA Middle School Curriculum

    Middle school is where DATA begins, with a specialized curriculum focused on exploring basic pathway ideas. By emphasizing career concepts in video production, architecture, media, and art design, our magnet school program provides exceptional college preparation for its students.

    DATA requires students to meet and maintain the following minimum academic standards to enroll in and be a part of the program:

    • Students must have passed all STAAR tests
    • Students must have a cumulative minimum average of 85 in academic courses
    • Students must be in good standing in regards to attendance and behavior, and maintain Student Code of Conduct expectations
  • 6th Grade

    Beginning in 6th grade, DATA students take two required technology courses—Application Technology Media (Tech Apps) and Exploration of Multimedia.

    Tech Apps

    Tech Apps is an introductory computer course focused on developing key skills like typing, maintaining an email inbox & sending professional emails, troubleshooting hardware & software, learning programs to format & create products, and understanding digital citizenship ethics. Students use tools like Gmail, Google Docs/Sheets/Drawings, and Adobe Photoshop to create products throughout the year.

    Exploring Multimedia

    Exploring Multimedia is a project-based course that introduces Adobe and open-source software. Students manipulate text and images in Photoshop, render keyframed videos in Premiere for YouTube, create multi-layered vector art in Illustrator brought to life with Animate or After Effects, and build precise 3D models in SketchUp Pro animated with Blender. The best models get 3D printed. Students also code apps using App Inventor and maintain digital portfolios on Google Sites.

    Required Courses

    • 6th Grade English/Reading, Honors GT
    • 6th Grade Math, Honors or GT or Hyper Accelerated Math (HAM), Honors or GT
    • 6th Grade Social Studies, Honors
    • 6th Grade Science, Honors
    • Application Technology Media
    • Exploration of Multimedia
    • PE/Pre-Athletics, Health 
    • Fine Arts Elective
  • 7th grade

    In 7th grade, DATA students continue expanding their technology expertise with high school credit courses in Digital Media and Principles of Art, Audio/Video, and Communications. Digital Media covers graphic design, advertising, marketing, and video production, challenging students with unique multimedia projects using Photoshop, Illustrator, and Premiere. Principles of Art, A/V, & Communications develops strong academic foundations alongside technology applications for Arts, Audio/Video, and Communications projects.

    Digital Media

    Digital Media allows students to demonstrate creative thinking, develop innovative strategies, and use communication tools to work effectively with others as well as independently. Topics covered in Digital Media include graphic design, advertising, marketing and video production. Students will be challenged to produce unique and creative multimedia projects while receving hands-on experience with adobe software including Photoshop, Illustrator, and Premiere.

    Principles of Art, A/V, and Communications

    This course develops a strong background in computer and technology applications, a strong academic foundation, and a proficiency in oral and written communication. Students apply information technology applications when completing Arts, Audio/Video Technology, and Communications projects. The student is expected to use information management, email, Internet, writing and publishing, presentation and spreadsheet or database applications.

    Required Courses

    • 7th Grade English/Reading, Honors GT
    • 7th Grade Math, Honors or GT or Hyper Accelerated Math Algebra 1*, Honors or GT
    • 7th Grade Social Studies, Honors
    • 7th Grade Science, Honors
    • PE or Athletics
    • Principles of A/V & Communications*
    • Digital Design & Media Production*
    • Elective (Additional Tech or Fine Arts)

    *Denotes High School credit

  • 8th Grade

    By 8th grade, students take two advanced technology courses for further specialization. Options include Digital Media II, Graphic Design & Illustration I, Principles of Architecture, and Video Game Design - all providing high school credit. Digital Media II builds on prior skills, analyzing technology while designing multimedia projects. Principles of Architecture provides an overview of architecture, interior design, and construction management. Principles of Art/AV/Comm explores multimedia content creation, visual/performing arts, journalism, and entertainment using Adobe Creative Cloud. Fundamentals of Computer Science introduces programming through 2D and 3D coding environments like Unreal Engine.

    Throughout middle school, the DATA program challenges students with a rigorous, high school-prep curriculum infused with technology, design, and career exploration across required and elective courses. This approach establishes critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, and specialized skills to develop well-rounded students ready for advanced high school studies and future success in college and career.

    Digital Media II

    In Digital Media II, students will build off the skills they learn in Digital Media I. Students analyze and assess current and emerging technologies, while designing and creating multimedia projects that address customer needs and resolve a problem. Students will implement personal and interpersonal skills to prepare for a rapidly evolving workplace environment. The knowledge and skills from the course enables students to successfully perform and interact in a technology-driven society. Students enhance their reading, writing, computing, communication, and critical thinking abilities and apply them to the IT environment. This course is a high school credit.

    Principles of Architecture

    Principles of Architecture provides an overview to the various fields of architecture, interior design, and construction management. Achieving proficiency in decision-making and problem-solving is an essential skill for career planning and lifelong learning. Students use self-knowledge, education, and career information to set and achieve realistic career and educational goals. Job-specific training can be provided through training modules that identify career goals in trade and industry areas. Classroom studies include topics such as safety, work ethics, communication, information technology applications, systems, health, environment, leadership, teamwork, ethical and legal responsibility, employability, and career development.

    Graphic Design and lllustration I

    Graphic Design and lllustration is a dynamic and hands-on course designed to introduce students to the exciting world of visual communication. Students will develop a comprehensive understanding of design theory color theory, typography, and composition. Emphasizing both traditional and digital methods, students will engage in practical exercises that foster creativity, critical thinking, and technical proficiency. From concept ideation to final execution, students will be guided through the design process, gaining valuable skills applicable to various industries. This course sets the stage for further exploration in advanced design courses and provides a solid platform for those considering a career in graphic design or illustration. Get ready to unleash your creativity and embark on an exciting journey into the world of visual storytelling! This course is a high school credit.

    Video Game Design

    Video Game Design will allow students to explore one of the largest industries in the global marketplace and the new emerging careers it provides in the field of technology. Students will learn gaming, computerized gaming, evolution of gaming, artistic aspects of perspective, design, animation, technical concepts of collision theory, and programming logic through 2D block-coding environments and 3D environments through Real Engine game studio, Students will learn from SNAP!, C#, JavaScript, and Python. This course is a high school credit.

    Required Courses

    • 8th Grade English/Reading, Honors GT
    • 8th Grade Algebra 1*, Honors or GT or Hyper Accelerated Math Geometry*, Honors or GT
    • 8th Grade Social Studies, Honors
    • 8th Grade Science, Honors
    • PE/Health* or Athletics
    • 8th grade Tech Class*
    • 8th grade Tech Class*
    • Elective (Additional Tech or Fine Arts)

    * Denotes High School credit