TEC Classes

Graphic Arts [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to provide the student with real world techniques used in today’s graphic arts industry. This class will allow the student opportunities to create projects that reflect their world and provide the chance to create flyers, ads, posters, banners, and other media for real world clients as well as empower students to create their own personal expression with computer technology.

Money Sense [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to provide the student with knowledge of practical personal finance. The topics include: how money works, the difference between debit and credit cards, how to use a checkbook, saving and investing, basic principles of economy, and more. This class will provide the student with a framework to be responsible with money as the student gets older and becomes an employee, ensuring that the student is a wise consumer and a stable producer in life.

Music and Production [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • Prerequisite - Prescreen process
This course aims to teach students the fundamentals of music, expose them to various musical genres, increase their appreciation of history and culture, and give them the tools needed to unlock the talent within them, creating their own expression.

Skills Acquired:
• Learn basic fundamentals of music (rhythm, notes, etc.)
• Learn basic functions of a recording studio
• Master basic recording and editing techniques
• Become familiar with DJ and live sound concepts
• Identify different musical genres
• Understand music industry occupations
• Gain techniques to create song lyrics
• Learn about publication, marketing, and distribution

Photography/Film [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to provide the student with hands-on experience and show real world techniques used in today’s photography industry. This class will allow the student opportunities to learn the reasoning and methodology behind capturing quality photos and how to integrate photography with technology in the real world. It will also explore how photography techniques are utilized in film.

Robotics [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to expose students into the world of robots and the use of technology that automates much of what we use on a daily basis. The class incorporates design, math, and computer programming to create, build, and animate robots with Lego blocks (EV3) and metal frames (Tetrix) for use in competitions. There are beginner and advanced classes with the opportunity to go to field competitions and show off your skills in design and team execution.

Virtual Reality 360° [M, T, W] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to teach students how to utilize VR technology, film-making, and creative writing to create their own 360-degree short films formatted for virtual reality technology. The club will create a 360° thematic story with the final project being an immersive, VR short film that documents the chosen theme from the perspective of the students.

Elective Classes

Chess Club [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
Do you have what it takes to be a chess champion? This course aims to use the game of chess as a tool to learn critical thinking skills. The class offers opportunities to go to several competitions that will pit your skills against other students in Fifth Ward and around the city.

Entrepreneurship [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
We will design an ongoing sequence of small, rapid prototypes to learn if and how the business will work. Learn an agile way to remove risk from creating new business models by testing your assumptions early to build stronger, more innovative solutions and get to product-market fit faster. In this course, you’ll combine traditional business strategy with the methods and mindsets of design thinking, and prototype three parts of a business: value proposition and offer, revenue model, and sales channel. You’ll unite the analytical with the creative, prototype to get feedback early, and focus on people to uncover new opportunities and unlock more value from existing offers. You will learn by doing through hands-on activities, sharing insights, and gathering feedback. Gain fresh perspective that will expand your thinking and push you to bold new ideas through practice and discussion within your community.

Game Jam [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course is a web-based computer game and online community that teaches students to design, refine, and publish their original video games. Course participants will receive game play access for life and are eligible to participate in the National STEM Video Game Challenge.

Gardening (elective) [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to teach students how to build and maintain their own garden and raise food from seed to table. This will model healthy eating and teach skills related to carpentry and other work that can translate into real life. The student will learn valuable knowledge in science as he explores how to make raised beds, creates tools for gardening with aquaponics, and gathers precious knowledge that will help him know in a better sense how hard farmers work so we can eat every day.

Hip Hop Dance [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course allows the student to learn techniques and principles of dance and movement and apply those fundamentals to actual choreography from an instructor with real world dance experience.

Houston Marathon Fun Run Club [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
For aspiring athletes and those who enjoy sports, this club is a great opportunity to immerse yourself in the sports world. Not only is there the chance to get in shape and run a 5K (3.1 miles), but there are opportunities for high school students to be involved in the behind-the-scenes action of the annual Houston Marathon, a huge citywide event with global outreach, and become interns as they get closer to graduation. Come check it out for cool gear, swag, and a pathway to your future in sports!

Just Add Beats [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
Shape the world of sound with Just Add Beats, an audio makerspace that introduces students to the process and professional world of writing songs, designing sound effects, and harnessing technology to produce recorded audio works. Over the course of 14 weeks with an audio professional guiding you, you will work together with your peers in small groups, role playing as creative audio agencies to record original songs and stories, solve real-world audio challenges for clients, and make your artistic voices heard!

Karate [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course aims to introduce martial arts to students and teach the methods of hand-to-hand combat. With everything taught, there is a strong emphasis on practical self-defense and character.


Leadership [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
This course, powered by the Travis Manion Foundation, presents leadership by sharing stories of real people who exemplify great character. CDM Mentors demonstrate what it means to live the “If Not Me, Then Who…” ethos – and then challenge students to do the same. This class will not just talk about character, but offer opportunities to go off campus and explore the concepts taught in a hands-on way.  

Woods Project Club [TH] • Grades 6-12 • No prerequisites
In partnership with The Woods Project, this course aims to create wilderness education and exploration experiences that develop the critical behaviors needed for success in school and life. The class will provide leadership skills and teach outdoor survival skills. There are weekend wilderness trips available during the semester and the opportunity to go on a two-week summer trip for high school students who have been faithful to the club elective.