|Pattonville students launch app they created for Pattonville|
|Thursday, June 15, 2017|
Eight Pattonville High School students who spent the past year working together to create an app for the Pattonville School District unveiled their final product and shared their journey during a presentation to an audience of parents, students, staff and community members on June 1. The app is now available for download from the App Store for iPhones or Google Play store for Android phones.
Students in Jeremiah Simmons' Computer Science Capstone class began work last summer on developing the app for Pattonville. Under Simmons' direction, the students worked with district officials as clients to develop an app that works on iOS and Android smartphones. During the app launch celebration, students shared how class was more like going to work every day and how they learned important soft skills such as teamwork, communication, presentation skills and working through struggles in addition to computer programming.
"Ultimately, we've learned the power of saying 'yes'," said Micah Thompkins, referring to the answer that was given when district officials asked about the possibility of students creating the app. In addition to Thompkins, the following students helped create the app: Mustapha Barrie, Kevin Bowers, Keturah Gadson, Ethan Holtgrieve, Mitchell Skaggs, Nathan Skelton and Josh Zahner.
Students began their work by reviewing survey data collected by the Pattonville community relations department and conducting their own primary research. They used this background knowledge to develop an app with features that would appeal to parents, staff, students and interested community members. A major feature of the app that differs from other school district apps developed by industry providers is a user experience customized to the different smartphone platforms. Settings, menus and buttons are designed according to what users of iPhone and Android phones are most accustomed, instead of being the same for both platforms. The app also features:
Computer science courses have grown noticeably at Pattonville High School due to student interest - from one class in the 2013-2014 school year to seven sections in 2016-2017. The high school offers two courses in Project Lead the WayÕs (PLTW) nationally recognized computer science program, Computer Science Principles and Computer Science A. This year, the school added the Computer Science Capstone class to its offerings, and students can also take an AP (advanced placement) computer science course.
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Pattonville students who created the new Pattonville app are show at the app launch celebration with their teacher, Jeremiah Simmons, right, and Mickey Schoonover, Pattonville director of school-community relations, left. They are, from left, Mustapha Barrie, Joshua Zahner, Micah Thompkins, Keturah Gadson, Kevin Bowers, Ethan Holtgrieve, Nathan Skelton and Mitchell Skaggs.