GT Academy Newsletter

April / May 2019

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Finishing a Great Year With Friends

Field Day is always a fun day, and this year did not disappoint! The last two days of school students enjoyed celebrating a successful school year with friends. They danced, ate snow cones, won a few prizes playing Bingo, showed off their tug-o-war skills (who knew sixth grade girls were so strong??), and got just a little wet during the water relay. Team Purdue also enjoyed a nice picnic with parents and teachers.

These students work so hard throughout the year. They give their all in class on challenging projects such as TPSP, and at academic competitions throughout the year. They have learned the critical skills of group dynamics and teamwork. This year, students impressed us with their public speaking skills as they presented TED Talks at the Showcase. They have refined discussion skills through Socratic Seminars, have become tech savvy as they create products to demonstrate new learning, and continue to dazzle us with their creativity. We have an outstanding group of students and it has been exciting to see them grow this year.

As Pele, the famous Brazilian soccer player said, "Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice, and most of all, love of what you are doing or learning to do."

As we close out the 2018-2019 school year, please enjoy the pictures in the slideshow links at the bottom of the newsletter, and if you are a parent of a GTA student, don't forget to take a few minutes to give your feedback using the survey link, if you have not already done so.

Have a great summer, and see you next year! - Mrs. Mueller

GTA Showcase

Written by Bella

The GTA students were very lucky and were able to participate in the GTA Student Showcase. The quilting process took a long time, but was so worth it. The groups had to do a lot of planning and editing. After we decided how we wanted the quilt, we were able to start sewing. That required us to sew squares, rectangles, a border, and finally the backing. Once we finished sewing, we wrote and practiced our presentation. After many weeks of practicing, the day we had been waiting for finally came! Everyone was so nervous, thinking "What if I mess up?" and , "There will be so many people." At first it was hard but once we started going we had fun. In the end, all of our hard work and thinking paid off!

Sparky Sparkfish

This awesome team of five traveled to the University of Maryland for the Seapearch National Competition June 1-2, where they finished 10th place overall, and 4th place on the engineering design process. They have worked together all year to design and build a Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) that navigates an obstacle course as quickly as possible.

After qualifying at the regional competition this spring, the Sparky Sparkfish submitted their engineering notebook to the national judges and were one of eight middle schools in the nation to advance to the interview portion of the competition! At the competition, they put their problem solving and teamwork skills to work. During the obstacle course event in the pool, they lost a propeller.The new propeller, given to them by the judge, did not work, as they had designed customized propellers for their ROV. But this team did not give up. They regrouped and appealed respectfully to the main judge, who gave them an opportunity to compete with the appropriate propeller. The result was a solid performance, followed by an excellent interview presentation. We are so proud of you, Sparky Sparkfish!

*Many thanks to Sparx Engineering, GTAB, and supportive parents for helping these amazing students reach their goal!

Stock Market Game Champs

Students in the Stock Market Game mini course spent several weeks researching companies and analyzing stocks. The Stock Market Game is "an online simulation of the global capital markets that engages students in the world of economics, investing and personal finance and that has prepared 17 million students for financially independent futures." Team Litcoin finished in first place, out of 146 teams in the region. Even more impressive is the fact that they placed 8th out of 858 teams in the area, and all seven teams that finished above them were high school teams! We are proud of the dedication this team showed to finishing strong. The math skills and economic knowledge they gained are sure to pay off in the future.

GTA Graduates Visit Sab

What a treat it was to see our first group of graduates to go through all four years of the GT Academy! Students and teachers celebrated the graduating seniors as they marched down the GT Academy hallway on May 22nd. It was an inspiration to hear about their future plans and fun to hear some of their favorite GTA memories.

This amazing group included Valedictorians, Salutatorians, a National Hispanic Merit Scholar, semifinalist for the Presidential Scholars Program, and several students who finished in the Top Ten of their class. Students plan to study music, chemical engineering, business, computer science, and graphic design, among other fields. Several will continue with band and sports at the college level. Universities they will attend include Harvard, Colorado School of Mines, Texas A&M, Arizona State, University of California Berkeley, University of Texas, and University of Houston.

The students enjoyed visiting with GT Academy teachers that were here "from the beginning" including Mrs. Sisk, Mrs. Medley, Mrs. Needler, Mrs. Williams, Mrs. Green and Mrs. Pasha. The teachers are so very proud of this group, noting that although they have grown taller, they still have the spirited enthusiasm they did back in middle school. Keep it up, graduates.You inspire us, and we know you are off to do great things!


Written by Nuhan

Inventions is a mini course here at Sab. We had to learn the entire process and we also learned the term "SCAMPER" (Substitute, Combine, Adapt, Minify/Magnify, Put to other uses, Elimiinate, Rearrange). We used SCAMPER on an Oreo. We learned about gadgets and other things too. Then it came to when we had to create a speech, poster and prototype for our invention. After that there was a competition and six people (including me) won and got to go to the University of Houston for the final competition! Three people from our group got awards. We also got 1st and 2nd place for the overall judging. Inventions was, in my opinion, the best mini course.

Art Car Parade

Written by Lily, Vanessa, Kesler, and Meena

The Art Car Parade was an event at Sablatura Middle School where we created our very own art cars (similar to the Houston Art Car Parade)! We took a toy car and decorate it to fit a specific theme that we got to choose.

At the end of the school day Friday, May 17th, we held the Art Car Parade. There were all sorts of topics students chose to decorate their cars like: Dragon, Dog, Drone, Chicken, Star Wars, Volleyball, Shark, Bunny, Spider, Lizard, Nature, Butterfly, Snowman, Peacock, Sunflower, and MORE! Students dragged and or drove their cars through the hallways of Sab and got to see all the delighted faces of their peers. Marching on, the students got to showcase their creativity in a super fun way! There were a few difficulties, but I feel that it was a very lively experience for many.

We look forward to future Art Car Parades even though we will be gone and in Junior High. We hope that future students or our siblings have it to enjoy. The students learned how to overcome their problems, and how to express their creativity, making the Parade both a learning experience and a fun time for all.

Drone Club Expanding to PJHW

Written by Phillip

Vice President of Drone Club

The Drone Club is a club made to help people learn about the ever-growing usage of drones in the world. It also helps kids with eye-hand coordination that can be used not only in the drone used businesses. At Drone Club, we focus on flight, how to use and fly a drone and how drones are used in everyday life. Sometimes guests will visit us or we will go on field trips like when DOW chemical pilots came at STEM night or Drone Parks at the robotics exhibition. Some field trips we have done in the past is to the Drone Energy Summit or to The Lone Star Flight Museum. Some of the things we do at Drone Club is play games with drones or do missions to accomplish a new task to learn. We hope that people will come next year to Drone Club even though me and J.P. (founders) will not be here next year.

Peer Buddies

Written by Liliana

Peer Buddies is a club where you get to talk, play and help the class of kids with special needs. The teachers are very nice to you and the students. They all are so excited to see you. I took this club and it was amazing. The students would ask me to sit with them. They would always be so nice. I had a great time with them. I learned that they are just like us, and could save the world.

GTA Spotlight

Thanks for a great year!

Please enjoy the photo slideshows from the awards ceremony, and don't forget to complete the GTA Parent Survey using the link below.

Mark Your Calendar

  • July 15-19 - GTA Math Boot Camp @ PJHW
  • July 15- 26 - Pear Camp @ Rogers Middle School
  • August 6 - Schedule Pick Up @ Sablatura 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m.
  • August 8 - GTA 5th Grade Gathering @ Sablatura 6:00-7:30 p.m.
  • August 8 - PJHW Wildcatter Camp 4:00 - 5:30 p.m. (incoming 7th graders only)
  • August 15 - School Starts!

And a few things to keep your brain in shape this summer...

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