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> 2017 Topic- WORLD WAR 2
nil
post Feb 4 2016, 03:14 AM
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Though it's a bit early to talk about, I was browsing the USAD website today and noticed the preorder form for the 2016-2017 materials is available here: http://usad.org/Home/2016-2017-order-forms.aspx

It seems the font (wartorn) suggests the topic will involve a war. Specifically, it makes me think of the Vietnam War though I wouldn't put the Korean war out of the realm of possibilities. Of course others are possible, but those two in particular seem most likely. Any thoughts?

This post has been edited by nil: Feb 4 2016, 03:17 AM
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ridgepoint_acdec
post Feb 4 2016, 12:34 PM
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Interesting. It certainly does have a Vietnam War type of look to that particular font to my eyes as well. And it is the 50th anniversary of the escalation of the war leading up to the Tet Offensive. You could select some great music, art (mostly photographs?) and literature from the Vietnam War (think how many students would already be familiar with The Things They Carried.) I would personally love this topic.


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mrrrg
post Feb 4 2016, 01:48 PM
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QUOTE (ridgepoint_acdec @ Feb 4 2016, 06:34 AM) *
Interesting. It certainly does have a Vietnam War type of look to that particular font to my eyes as well. And it is the 50th anniversary of the escalation of the war leading up to the Tet Offensive. You could select some great music, art (mostly photographs?) and literature from the Vietnam War (think how many students would already be familiar with The Things They Carried.) I would personally love this topic.

It certainly does look almost like US Army grade....what about a unit going from WW2 to 1989 (end of Berlin Wall)? interestinger and interestinger.......
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The Evil Dr. Cal...
post Feb 4 2016, 05:44 PM
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And it is a different war font than the WW1 order form, so I think this is a pretty good clue. smile.gif


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Gurkha
post Feb 5 2016, 02:21 PM
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Greg did you really start this topic ? I happen to be home with my sick kid today so now my mind will be on that all day, when I should be thinking India and what time am I suppose to give the next round of medicine.


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Scholastic Under...
post Feb 5 2016, 02:58 PM
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Hey, Round 2 hasn't even fully concluded nationwide! Don't remind me of the impending end of my AcaDec career! drama2.gif


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txthomas
post Feb 17 2016, 07:49 PM
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The Vietnam War would be a great topic and a vast improvement over India. I have not enjoyed this year's curriculum.


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madcap
post Feb 17 2016, 07:59 PM
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QUOTE (txthomas @ Feb 17 2016, 02:49 PM) *
The Vietnam War would be a great topic and a vast improvement over India. I have not enjoyed this year's curriculum.


What didn't you like about it?


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Phil Cerami
post Feb 19 2016, 01:58 PM
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We came to a similar conclusion - Vietnam...


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txthomas
post Feb 20 2016, 08:35 PM
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QUOTE (madcap @ Feb 17 2016, 01:59 PM) *
QUOTE (txthomas @ Feb 17 2016, 02:49 PM) *
The Vietnam War would be a great topic and a vast improvement over India. I have not enjoyed this year's curriculum.


What didn't you like about it?


The novel was depressing, the music was horrible, and the social science was so dense. India just did not appeal to me.


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Scholastic Under...
post Feb 22 2016, 12:15 AM
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QUOTE (txthomas @ Feb 20 2016, 02:35 PM) *
QUOTE (madcap @ Feb 17 2016, 01:59 PM) *
QUOTE (txthomas @ Feb 17 2016, 02:49 PM) *
The Vietnam War would be a great topic and a vast improvement over India. I have not enjoyed this year's curriculum.


What didn't you like about it?


The novel was depressing, the music was horrible, and the social science was so dense. India just did not appeal to me.

The novel was depressing but hopeful despite that, I quite liked most of the music (I still can't stand you Lata Mangeshkar) and the Social Science was dense but very interesting.


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The Evil Dr. Cal...
post Feb 22 2016, 01:17 AM
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Yeah, I would say that most of my team likes this year's curriculum.


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Scholastic Under...
post Feb 22 2016, 01:22 AM
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I would say my only complaint about USAD insofar as straight-up curriculum goes is that it seems like USAD can't help but choose at least one song every year that makes me want to gouge my eardrums out with a burin


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fyzics
post Feb 22 2016, 10:54 PM
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I have loved this year's topic - it has really made me want to go see India. I also adored the book. My issue is with the guides themselves:

SoSci - there are so many errors in this packet that I am in awe. How is this even possible?

Music - This seems like a collection of Indian words to me, wrapped up in a few historical facts. The amount of pure vocabulary is impossible. On the upside, they finally stopped using the music theory section as it was in previous years.

Lit - No one needs a guide that just summarizes what we can read for ourselves. Plus, I lost all respect when the packet's author reported that Nathan had lived happily ever after.

Science - India? Hello? Where are you? You were not in this packet. Except in the form of a jackal. Which is stupid.

Art, Econ, Math - whatevs.

2017: But I am thinking that that font looks EXACTLY like the font they used for MASH...
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b-rad
post Feb 26 2016, 05:22 AM
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QUOTE (fyzics @ Feb 22 2016, 04:54 PM) *
Music - This seems like a collection of Indian words to me, wrapped up in a few historical facts. The amount of pure vocabulary is impossible. On the upside, they finally stopped using the music theory section as it was in previous years.

<soapbox>
I can't wait until the return of more traditional music theory. While the focus of art seems to deal with more of the historical and social component, Section I still deals with styles and "elements" of art. Music should be no different. Only Section I has ever really dealt with much theory (or "elements"). That's only 24% of the tests according to old outlines. The rest of the resource deals with a lot of the historical and social components of the music and musicians. So if students have to learn some Art elements, let's learn some Music elements, too. If they have to learn traditional Mathematical notation and fundamentals, I don't mind them learning a little traditional Musical notation and fundamentals as well.

Music is a very technical subject; specialized and complex. However, it is absolutely no more complex than Math. When the math scores are low, I always read coaches complain that they just can't teach the math or that their kids just aren't good at math. Hardly ever do they complain about the math resources being "too difficult." But the tone has always been different with music. Rarely do I read, "I just can't teach the music theory," or, "my kids just aren't good with the music theory." It's always, "The music theory is too hard," "I wish they'd get rid of the music theory part," or, "...upside, they finally stopped using the music theory section as it was in previous years." Let's just acknowledge that music theory is a very cerebral and academic discipline. As with any other disciplines, it can be learned.

“I would teach children music, physics, and philosophy; but most importantly music, for the patterns in music and all the arts are the keys to learning”
Plato
</soapbox>

<sympathy>
Music is aural. It is hard to learn about music by reading. Showing, doing, and experiencing are all better ways to learn about music than reading. I've seen a phrase (with unclear origins, so no proper attribution): "Writing about music is like dancing about architecture." Well-written Music Theory books are best understood by people who already know and have some understanding of music theory––people that can already do and have already experienced. So the Resource Guide alone is never going to be the best way to learn that content. People who aren't trained in music act as if it is a foreign language. It is! It has its own rules of syntax and structure. It is just very different than the syntax and structure people tend to be more familiar with.
</sympathy>

That being said, I can agree that the USAD Music Resource Guides aren't always the most well-written documents. The crap they were trying to sell as "the" blues scale one year was not what any musician I've ever known would play if I asked them to play a blues scale. And some of their notation has been horrible! I hate using shortcuts like Bb instead of B-flat if you don't have a music font with a proper flat symbol, or # instead of a proper sharp sign, or their notation of a scale degree as ^2 in the past instead of using a proper music font to put the caret above the number. I loved the year (or I at least thought it was the best year) when they used a Chopin score to highlight several elements of the music.


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nil
post Mar 1 2016, 02:48 PM
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Since no one has posted yet, here it is:
http://usad.org/Footer-Menu/Other/Curricul...fo-2016-17.aspx

United States Academic Decathlon® Curricular Topics for 2016–2017!
The U.S. Academic Decathlon® is excited to announce that the overall curricular theme
for 2016–2017 will be World War II. Following is some general information on the
topics in each of the subject areas.
 SCIENCE: The science topic will be an introduction to atomic and nuclear
physics and will include a section on the Manhattan Project and the development
of the atomic bomb.
 LITERATURE: The literature curriculum will include critical reading, one long
work of literature, and selected shorter works. The long work of literature will be
the novel Transit by Anna Seghers.
 ART: The art curriculum will include a section on art fundamentals and will
largely focus on the art of the World War II era.
 MUSIC: The music curriculum will include basic elements of music theory and
will focus on the music of the World War II era.
 SOCIAL SCIENCE: The social science curriculum will cover World War II.
 ECONOMICS: The economics curriculum will cover fundamental economic
concepts, microeconomics, and macroeconomics and will also include a thematic
section on the economic origins and impact of World War II.
 MATHEMATICS: The mathematics curriculum will cover algebra and
trigonometry.*
The full subject area outlines will be posted on the U.S. Academic Decathlon® website
<www.usad.org> on May 1 and will also be published in the U.S. Academic Decathlon®
Study Guide, which will begin shipping on May 15.
* The 2016–17 mathematics curriculum and materials will be the same as were used for
the 2013–14 U.S. Academic Decathlon®.
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Stanley Tree
post Mar 1 2016, 02:52 PM
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The book seems interesting. I'm very happy to see the science on topic instead of random. Seems like it should be a solid topic all around- the music may be a bit odd, but I can't wait for some propaganda art.


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Dave C
post Mar 1 2016, 04:30 PM
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The kids are excited...should be a good topic. Social science and science will be great. I found a couple people here who have heard of the novel, but no one has read it. I'm having trouble finding a copy anywhere in the city, and that hasn't happened before. Last year I found five copies of Nectar at a Half Price Books and bought them all. It's going to be tougher to find enough copies to teach the novel this spring.

I'm looking forward to seeing what the music selections are...any guesses from anyone? Art and music propaganda will be cool, and I'm tempted to show some propaganda cartoons this spring just because.

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b-rad
post Mar 1 2016, 06:46 PM
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As far as music selections, I'd love for "Praise the Lord and Pass the Ammunition" to be one of the selections. There are good possibilities such as Aaron Copland (Fanfare for the Common Man [1942], Rodeo [1942], and Appalachian Spring [1944]), maybe Igor Stravinsky (but a lot of his more famous works were earlier), possibly Benjamin Britten, and definitely some Dmitri Shostakovich. Maybe something from William Walton (maybe Passacaglia: Death of Falstaff [1944] from the film Henry V... There are several reasons this would make an excellent selection!). I'd like to have a nice section to read on Nadia Boulanger and her influence. Another section I'd like to see is the American Federation of Musicians recording ban, the rise of crooners, and possibly even how bebop was able to develop during this time period of the recording ban, so maybe some Frank Sinatra and a Charlie Parker standard for listening selections. While composed in 1960, "Threnody to the Victims of Hiroshima" by Penderecki could be a possibility as a retrospective work. Richard Wagner was beloved by Hitler. The music was not WWII-era, but its use by the Nazis may make it relevant. I'd also love to hear Gustav Mahler. It also has no WWII relevance other than the fact it was banned by the Nazis. Although maybe they would include something in the resource about the Swing Kids of Nazi Germany and the banned jazz. Perhaps a listening selection featuring Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa. And they'd have to include Glen Miller, with him missing in action in 1944 after his plane disappeared over the English Channel! I think the music resource has some great potential!

This post has been edited by b-rad: Mar 1 2016, 08:35 PM


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Jr.
post Mar 1 2016, 11:02 PM
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I figured they'd use WW2 as a topic eventually by didn't think this soon tongue.gif the few remaining 2013-14 competitors would be delighted! Overall looks like a better, more cohesive topic than previous years

This post has been edited by Jr.: Mar 2 2016, 07:34 AM


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