Academy students are required to earn 14 Exploration Credits total during their 9th grade and 10th grade school years. Explorations focus on developing self-reliance, responsibility, a greater understanding of the importance of science and technology in our world, and career opportunities. Students are expected to complete their Explorations by the end of their sophomore year, and they must be completed before students are eligible for an internship. A letter jacket patch is awarded by the Academy when Explorations are completed.
The many exploration opportunities are announced during the year by e-mail and on the Academy website. Credit will be given for events that take place outside of regular school hours including after school, on weekends, on holidays, etcetera. Freshmen may begin earning exploration credit following attendance at Fish Camp.
Types of Explorations Activities
There are three kinds of Explorations – Academy Sponsored, Academy-Approved, and Distinguished Lectures. Each Exploration requires timely submission of required components to be eligible for credit. Students may complete any combination of Explorations activities to earn their explorations credits.
- An Academy-Sponsored Exploration such as a tour, field trip, or other events involves a general announcement to all students with directions on how to participate in and get credit for the Exploration. It may involve student sign-up, transportation information/requirements, teacher sponsor; sometimes a cost, etc. Academy-sponsored explorations will receive three credits for each event.
- An Academy-Approved Exploration, such as college or university visits, lectures held at other academic institutions, or other local opportunities. Students typically provide their own transportation and there will not be an Academy sponsor at the events. Academy-approved explorations will receive two credits for each event.
- College Visits (maximum of 2 visits for credit)
- Houston Zoo
- Museum of Natural Science
- Moody Gardens
- NASA Johnson Space Center
- Health Museum
- University of Houston Architecture Center Walking Tours
- State and National Parks
- State and National Museums
If a student is interested in an opportunity that is not listed here, they can get pre-approval from the headmaster to receive credit. Approval must be received before the activity or it will not be eligible for credit consideration.
- Distinguished Lectures will be presented by both EFTA and the CISD Academies. Students will likely participate by Zoom, and many of these lectures occur in the evening so students can attend from home. Students will earn one credit for attending a distinguished lecture.
Protocol for Exploration Credit Submissions
Students are required to submit a video reflection to receive credit for each Explorations activity. Videos should be submitted to the following Flipgrid board: https://flip.com/1e54d087
Check out this Flip
Video guidelines are as follows:
- You should include –
- Your name
- Where you went
- When you went there
- Why you chose that exploration
- Did you like it?
- Was it useful?
- What you learned
- How could this affect your future?
- How could this impact a certain field of study?
- Does this connect to anything you have learned in class?
- One artifact from the activity
- A picture
- A ticket
- A program or brochure
- Videos should be between 1 minute and 30 seconds to 2 minutes and 30 seconds long.
- Videos should be uploaded to the Flipgrid within two weeks of the activity. Credit will not be awarded for late submissions.
- Videos should be similar to a presentation. They should be clear to see and hear, and they should include all of the pertinent information in a concise format.
- Students may choose to include pictures, record from the location, or submit an audio voice over of a slideshow picture presentation of the activity.
Students can earn Exploration credits through a variety of experiences. One of those is by attending Distinguished Lectures and Speaker Presentations. After attending, the student needs to type a summary (2-4 page double spaced) of the experience that includes reflections of what was learned, and how the experience connects to what has been learned in class. The essay should then be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
Click below to access a list of current and upcoming Lectures and Speakers.