March 2019 (Volume 2, Number 3)

Spring Is In the Air

The first signs of spring will soon blossom as trees begin to bloom, and kids climb back on their bikes and scooters to enjoy the fresh outdoors. At Leadership Prep School, we will complete the third nine-weeks at the end of this month and prepare for all the learning and activities that will take place during the last quarter of this school year. We hope you enjoy Spring Break and look forward to the students coming back refreshed and ready to finish strong.
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Vice President from Gearbox Software Discusses Game Design with Video Game Design Students

Mr. Curtis' Video Game Design Students were offered a unique opportunity to meet with Aaron Thibault, VP of Strategic Operations at Gearbox Software, to learn more about video game design. Gearbox Software is located in Frisco and known for creating several popular games, such as Borderlands, and publishing Fortnite, which includes packaging the game and making it available on various platforms.

Students learned that computer coding is not the only important skill necessary for a career in game development. Professionals with a background in art, music, writing and story / character development, law, business, marketing, accounting, psychology, and other field s are needed to make this company with 350 employees successful. Aaron himself has a background in music, art, and art technology and animation. Gearbox Software uses project management techniques similar to LPS' project-based learning model to ensure that each of these employees working on a game achieves his/her goals in a timely manner and the pieces of the game fit together seamlessly. To be highly marketable to a studio, Aaron recommends learning how to integrate pieces of technology together, one of the most valuable skills to have in the video game industry.

Video games cost $100 million+ to create and market. Games, like well-known Grand Theft Auto, cost around $250 million. Investors provide the capital for games. When the games sell, the investors take back what they originally paid plus a percentage of the profits.

Leadership Prep School is thankful for Gearbox Software's partnership. In addition to talking with our students, Gearbox hosted several LPS secondary teachers for a day this past summer as part of a teacher externship experience. As a result of this opportunity, our teachers learned about career opportunities in the multi-billion dollar video game industry by shadowing video game professionals in various departments and positions gathering information about skills, career pathways, and the day-to-day operations of the business. The teachers externed with several local business to better understand the needs of business and industry and how to best prepare our students for their future in the workforce.

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Last month, Chloe Waller lettered in varsity volleyball. Volleyball was the first sport to have a varsity team at LPS this year, and Chloe is the first (and only, thus far) 7th grade student at LPS to earn a varsity letterman jacket.

To earn a letterman jacket in volleyball, a student must play in five varsity games. In doing so, Chloe competed against teams of charter school girls who are primarily juniors and seniors. When she received her jacket during lunch at school, her peers clapped and cheered for her. Chloe said she felt “spectacular” having classmates who wanted to celebrate her achievements with her.

Chloe’s parents serve as her biggest advocates and encourage her to do her best and succeed in everything she sets out to accomplish. LPS Varsity Volleyball Coach, "Mrs. Alissa Rice, has also inspired Chloe and motivated her to believe in herself and excel beyond the typical boundaries of younger players. When Chloe demonstrated that she was ready, Mrs. Rice moved her up to the varsity team.

“I will never forget the day Coach Rice told me I was part of the varsity team,” said Chloe. “I am grateful that she saw potential in me. I am also so thankful to my parents. I love you Mom, Dad, and Coach Rice!”

In addition to playing volleyball at LPS, Chloe is on the national level team for the Frisco Flyers Volleyball Club. Her team will travel to Colorado during spring break for the Colorado Crossroads national qualifier. This team tournament is one of a handful of qualifier tournaments where teams from all over the country play for a chance to receive a "bid" (invitation) to play in the junior national championships. Chloe's team will be one of about 125 teams in her age and division at the tournament. Her team will also play in the Dallas qualifier in April.

This school year is Chloe's first at LPS. Her favorite class is band, and she exclaims, Ms. Allen is the best!" When she is not on the court, she enjoys playing the clarinet and spending time with her friends. Her academic goal is to maintain her straight A average each nine-weeks. She looks forward to completing her K-12 education at LPS.

Chloe's other goal is to improve her vertical jump and develop an impenetrable block. She plans to attend volleyball camp this summer in Austin to help her accomplish this goal. After she graduates, Chloe plans to attend college and continue pursuing her passion of playing volleyball.

Carley and Alyssa go to Austin

Eighth grade students Carley and Alyssa Thornton received a hands-on civics lesson when they travelled to Austin February 11 and 12 as representatives of the Texas Bleeding Disorder Coalition to meet with legislators and staff about blood disorders. The twins were born with Von Willerbrand Disease (Type 2B), a rare blood disorder that requires on-going medical supervision. During their trip, they met with Senator Angela Paxton and staff members from the offices of State Senator Jane Nelson and State Representative Jared Patterson to request their support for House Bill 1508, the bill that designates March as Bleeding Disorders Awareness Month.

To the girls' surprise, Frisco Mayor Jeff Cheney and other representatives from the City were also sitting in the gallery and visiting with legislators about issues affecting our City. Carley and Alyssa were humbled to learn that they were participating in the government process in the same way as our city leaders. This experience demonstrated to them that the system was created to give all people a voice in government.

Habit 1: Helpers at Home

For the next several months, we will feature an article about how to practice using the 7 Habits at home. By now your child has learned the 7 habits of leadership and have had opportunities to practice applying them in daily school situations.

At LPS, we encourage our community to have responses to others in a proactive, rather than reactive, manner. In order to be proactive, a person must first acknowledge what is under their control and what isn’t. Being proactive takes thought and work!

To extend these leadership habits to the home sphere, we offer here a few family exercises to try at home, focusing on this first habit of self-leadership, Habit 1: Be Proactive (I’m in charge of me!)

For younger students: With sidewalk chalk, go outside and draw a circle on the sidewalk that is big enough for the child to stand inside. In this circle write “can control.” Then draw a larger circle outside the first circle and write “can’t control.” Play a game with your child by calling out things that are either under their control (homework, what to wear that day, how they behave) or not under their control (age, weather, how someone else behaves). Let them do the same for you. Choose two scenarios to role-play on how to deal either proactively or reactively to a situation or person.

For older students: A new way of asking your child how their day went is to try this pair of questions, perhaps at the dinner table: What did you have control over today? What did you not have control over today?

Sometimes just these two questions are enough to discuss as they stimulate awareness that everyone has things that happen in their day that are out of their control. However, if you choose to go forward then you might follow up by asking how your child responded to whatever it was that they didn’t have control over and if that was a response that benefited them or the situation in which they found themselves. If not, was there another response that might have been better, now that they have had a chance to think about it?

These are wonderful opportunities for parents to lead the way and show that challenges and choices continue at every stage of life. If you are using the 7 Habits at home and would like to share something that has worked for your family, please email us at

LPS is the P.L.A.C.E. to be!

The mission of Leadership Prep School is to inspire students to learn, grow, and lead for a lifetime. The acronym P.L.A.C.E. summarizes the five key areas that have been selected as the focus of LPS’ vision: Parent partnership, Leadership development, Academics, Creativity and Excellence.

LPS is proud to be a Leader in Me based school that applies The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People to emphasize a culture of student empowerment and help unleash each child’s full potential. Focusing on the program’s timeless leadership principles nurtures the skills students need for success in the 21st century.

Leadership Prep School is recognized as a “Computer Science Immersion School” by Code to the Future. LPS integrates programming and game design into its curriculum starting in kindergarten with more advanced computer science concepts introduced as students advance each year.

Leadership Prep School is part of the New Tech Network and partners with local businesses to engage students in project-based learning activities, which enhances critical thinking skills in order that students may become strong problem-solvers. Project-based learning methodology makes learning relevant and prepares students for the demands of the workplace.