Austin -- The fourth-biennial Texas Capitol Schoolhouse was held Thursday, February 15, 2001 in the Capitol's ground floor rotunda. Students and teachers from all over the state have come together with Governor Rick Perry, Lt. Governor Bill Ratliff, House Speaker James E. "Pete" Laney, Austin Senator Gonzalo Barrientos, Amarillo Senator Teel Bivins, Houston Senator Rodney Ellis and Henderson State Representative Paul Sadler. The students are demonstrating how technology in their schools is improving and helping them learn the importance of technology to the world around them.
The Texas Capitol Schoolhouse is hosted by the Legislature. Thirteen schools participated at the Capitol, all employing very different programs.
|Palestine Senator Todd Staples listening to demonstrations at the Texas Capitol Schoolhouse held Thursday, February 15, 2001.|
Hart ISD has a school-based health center, where kids can "step into" a doctor's office and learn how to diagnose medical problems through live cameras and their computer without ever leaving school.
Kerry Shawcross, Jennifer Lloyd and Elizabeth Stewart are fourth graders from Galm Elementary in Northside. These students have learned how to present school and personal projects on PowerPoint and the web. "I'm learning to use the computer more," said Kerry, "and it's fun!"
A. J. Moore Academy in Waco has a pre-engineering curriculum. The students there use electronics like an oscilloscope, an instrument commonly used to display and analyze the waveform of electronic signals, to learn how to build bridges on the computer.
|Amarillo Senator Teel Bivins, chair of the Senate Education Committee, listens as teachers and students demonstrate technology and their creative skills at Texas Capitol Schoolhouse held Thursday, February 15, 2001, in the Ground Level Rotunda at the Capitol.|
Students at Colorado High School in Colorado City have been working on an environmental project about rivers with 43 other schools scattered across the state. This project helps them gain more of an awareness of the river environments in Texas.
Seminole Elementary in Seminole uses CD and online reading solutions. Student Trever Davis says that the CD games have helped improve his reading and spelling skills.
Diann Boehm, principal of The Internet Schoolhouse, said that the current technology of wireless laptops, digital video cameras, etc. presents kids with the opportunity and freedom to learn about and have a better understanding of the world and our future. Boehm trains teachers and students as young as Pre-K how to build their own web sites. She also trains them to use the Web effectively.
|"Show, tell and touch" of the latest computers and software proved both fun and inventive. Amarillo Senator Teel Bivins uses a probe while viewing results instantaneously on screen. Bivins, chair of the Senate Education Committee, was one of the sponsors of the event.|
As Senator Bivins, the first senator to address the students and teachers, began to speak on how education is his most important issue, a dozen or more students with cameras and microphones in hand made their way to where the professional media were recording and video taping the senator. These kids are learning about the use of technology around them and are already a big part of it.
Learn more about the Internet Schoolhouse and the Texas Capitol Schoolhouse by going to their website at www.internetschoolhouse.com.