McALLEN – A small wooden car speeds down a high school hallway as a cluster of teenagers watch, intent on gauging the velocity and strength of impact as it slams against a far wall. They run to pick it up and peer at the iPod Touch strapped atop the car to measure the acceleration, angle, and speed of the object. They then use the data to create a graph on an excel spreadsheet. It's the beauty of physics and technology, intertwined.
Now, one of those students -- 16-year-old Joshua Villarreal -- listens quietly, his heart hammering in his chest as an announcement is being transmitted live via Internet to all 32 schools across the McAllen Independent School District.
"This is a wonderful day-a game changer that will revolutionize the way we prepare our students for the 21st century," said McAllen ISD superintendent Dr. James Ponce. He spoke at an elementary school library filled with community leaders and other dignitaries, company executives, parents, students, and employees.
The event marked the official launching of TLC3-Transforming Learning in the Classroom, Campus, and Community-a unique move to place a mobile device in the hands of every student in the district.
It's a move that puts McAllen ISD out front and center as a leader of instructional technology, coupled with Challenged Based Learning.