Tartan High School, MN – Home of the Longest Running Coding and 3D Video Game Design Class in Minnesota – STEM Success
We love seeing teachers having a real influence in the lives of their students year after year. Vicki Kapaun has been teaching at Tartan High School for 19 years. Like so many CTE and STEM educators, she was drawn to teaching after beginning her career in industry. She brings valuable experience to students curious about what it is like to have a job in industry. To be completely transparent, although Vicki lives and teaches in the greater Minneapolis area, during the football season she can be found cheering for the Green Bay Packers with the rest of her family (just a heads up to the Vikings fans).
STEM and Coding Happens
Vicki is also a BPA advisor, AVID instructor, and track coach. Like most teachers, she doesn’t have much spare time for lesson preparation, as every day she must hit the ground running. We caught up with Vicki and asked about her experiences using the CTeLearning Coding and 3D Video Game Design course.
What has been your experience?
Vicki says “I have been using the Coding and 3D Video Game Design curriculum since 2011, and I’m impressed by the amount of support I receive from Steve and his team at CTeLearning.com/I Support Learning, Inc.
“The curriculum is well designed to support learners new to coding, and it also gives an idea of what a student could expect if they went into the career of video game design.
There is lots of interaction in the online modules including videos to watch and ‘fun facts’. Assignments, quizzes, and keys for both of those are all provided. In fact, there is enough curriculum in this class to cover well over a semester, and CTeLearning.com keeps adding new info and videos to update the curriculum.
My class is 60 hours (1 trimester) and there are many things that I don’t have time to do in the module – I could easily offer a Video Game Design 2 class! The curriculum could also work as an online or hybrid course.”
Everybody starts out…
“As a teacher new to the code used in this curriculum, I was initially worried about being able to answer student’s questions and support them in their learning. The CTeLearning development team is very willing and available to answer my questions so that I can help students create fun and personalized video games.”
“After seven years of using this curriculum, I can assure you that you will be happy with both the course and the support you receive from CTeLearning.com/I Support Learning, Inc.”
Wow – seven years – time sure does fly. We love getting the opportunity to be a part of what teachers do everyday. We truly appreciate Vicki allowing us to be a partner in the work she does with her Tartan HS students.
For us at CTeLearning, we are proud knowing that Vicki has been utilizing our courses for over seven years. Schools have many curriculum options, and we do our best to set ourselves apart with robust, self-directed courses and top-notch educator support.
Our educators know they can speak directly with us, the creators of the course. Because we have no salespeople, we rely on teachers spreading the word to others about the tangible impact our courses have on students.
This flies in the face of every business advisor we have ever had, but it means that any and all growth we have is merit-based, not marketing-based.
STEM is a group effort
Our team here has discussed the possibility of researching how many business educators are leading the way in teaching coding to middle and high schoolers in the U.S., as we are proud to have many BPA, FBLA and NBEA teachers in our user ranks. We believe STEM/STEAM can be taught anyone with the passion to teach (given the right tools and support).
After seven years, we have developed a great relationship with Vicki and enjoy seeing the impact she has in the lives of her students. We actually look forward to the end of summer when our STEM educators return for another year of impacting the world one student at a time.
Tartan High School is not our only home in the Minneapolis area. ISD 622’s North High School also boasts a Coding and 3D Video Game Design program lead by Nancy Ness. Don’t be surprised if you see a blog post down the road about Nancy and we’ll be sure to find out if she’s a Packers fan or a Vikings fan.
We really appreciate working with Vicki and Tartan High School. Another trimester is underway, and we can’t wait to see the video games her students create.