Expecting the Unexpected - Mid-Pacific Institute

Elementary School Principal's Blog

Expecting the Unexpected

Posted on September 13, 2007

by Dr. Edna Hussey on September 13, 2007

Dear Parents of Mid-Pacific Institute,

One of the reasons I look forward to coming to school every day is that I can always expect the unexpected. From the beginning of the day in autoline until I leave to return home, it truly is a day like no other. For example, percussionist and educator Michael Wall visited the Fifth Graders this morning to build upon the notion of team work and cooperation practiced in the classroom and on the playing field. After learning about each percussion instrument (e.g., drums, maracas, clave sticks) and the importance of following directions and being attentive to others, students and their teachers created incredible, syncopated music together. In the reflection period that followed, some students wrote:

“I learned that teamwork requires concentration, participation, and applauding others.  It’s easier to work as a team than to do something by yourself.”

“You need to compliment each other and be nice to one another in order to work together and have fun.”

“Working as a team makes great music together.”

“TEAM means Together, Everyone can Accomplish More.”

They clearly understood that creating music was the metaphor for working cooperatively.  Certainly, the challenge will be to apply their learning from this uplifting experience to their work on group or class projects, or playing a game of soccer or basketball at recess.

While the Fifth Graders were making rhythmic music together, the Thunderbirds screeched above the school.Within minutes, the children streamed out of their classrooms, all eyes and fingers pointed toward the sky and the jets that soared overhead. It was an amazing sight to see the awe and wonder on the children’s and teachers’ faces.  You can just imagine the questions and comments from the students when they reluctantly returned to their classrooms. Then again at 2:30pm today when the Thunderbirds launched into the skies for another rehearsal performance for Saturday’s show, the children and parents in the autoline were mesmerized by the breathtaking feats.

While the events of the day are not typical, there certainly is daily “drama” in the classroom that engages the intelligence of our students. From a literary discussion of Summer of the Monkeys and the prime factorization of numbers in the fifth grade to creating textures with tempera paint and making plans for learning using their own inventive writing in the preschool, our students can also expect the unexpected!

Our students in the preschool and elementary are encouraged to bring canned goods or non-perishable food items each month in raising awareness about helping to feed the hungry and homeless in our island community. Hunger and homelessness is year-round, and so we hope to continue providing food items to the Palolo Food Pantry. We ask that the food items be brought to school September 17-20.  This month, parents from Ms. Hitomi's class will be transporting the items to the food pantry on September 20th.  The character education teachers, Loriann Yukihiro and  Shirley Rivera, have been talking to the children about our Project Sharing. Thank you for supporting this worthwhile and much-needed effort.

The planning for Moon Over Manoa 2007 is well underway. At the recent Open Houses, parents on the committee asked for your support in donations for class baskets. I want to assure you that all donors providing gifts, whether cash, certificates, or gifts-in-kind, will receive acknowledgement letters and be listed in the Fall issue of the Owl Line Annual Report section and in an article about the event. Thanks in advance for making a donation and/or attending the gala.  

‘Tis the season for ukus, which have been spotted in a few classrooms. Notes have been sent home in the Thursday packet for those classes in which ukus have been found. We ask that you take precautions at home this weekend and check your child’s head carefully.You can refer to the parent/student handbook for suggestions on treatment.      We will be fumigating classrooms and disinfecting desktops and carpets.

Be sure to check your child’s packet today for his/her MPI i.d. Keep it in a safe place. There may be several occasions during the school year when they will need it.

In the packets for grades 3-5 are Student Admission coupons to the ILH football games.  Students may enter free with their 2007-2008 MPI i.d. card and the designated Pac-Five coupon for each game.

Our school office is beginning to look like Costco with cases of water stacked high!  Thank you for all the donations, which we’ll continue to accept through Friday. A team of parents will begin prepping the food on Friday night, then the barbecue grill fires up noon on Saturday to begin cooking the chicken. Parking is available in the lot across the Hartley Technology Plaza and by the gym — lots of parking. Check the Thursday packet for the flyer. I’m looking forward to seeing you at the Welcome Barbecue on Saturday, September 15, 2:00-5:00pm. You might get to see the Thunderbirds zooming above the barbecue!

For our children,

Edna L. Hussey