Chameleon or comedian? Frank DeLima, Hawaii's favorite comedian, visited the elementary school this past Monday to share this important message with our students: read daily, study, work hard in school, be able to laugh, and honor their families. For several years now, Frank has visited many public and private schools to offer his character education presentation to students of all ages. He made sure to clarify the terms 'chameleon' and 'comedian,' which he said some students confuse when referring to him. He sprinkled his presentation with some of his trademark songs and jokes, all very funny. Frank drew a very careful distinction between telling jokes and teasing, the difference in terms of effect. Humor can uplift the human spirit. Teasing is destructive and can inflict emotional pain. We like his analogy: a cut on your finger can heal in a few days. But a cut to your self-esteem and spirit can take a lifetime to heal, or perhaps not. Frank donned a Christmas costume, complete with Christmas lights, and explained that he uses humor to help people deal with some of the challenges they experience in life. It was a refreshing visit, and I'm sure the children left chapel with a smile in their hearts.
Despite inclement weather, parents and their children braved the torrential rain to attend conferences with their respective teachers. As explained in last week's letter, the purpose of the conference is to celebrate each child's strengths and to acknowledge areas of improvement and a plan of action to work on these areas in school and at home. The teachers are now writing the conference summaries. These summaries and a complete set of the performance continua, including the assessments for music, character education, art, and physical education, will be mailed directly to parents' homes the week of December 22nd. If you have not received the packet by December 29, please contact the school office at 441-3800. We strongly encourage you to carefully review your child's progress portfolio with your child. Portfolios will need to be returned to the classroom, so keep it in a safe place at home. Congratulations to our children for their hard work, diligence, and responsibility.
During the last week of school before Christmas vacation, it's business as usual in the classroom, though we admit it'll be more challenging! Natividad Internationale, the children's holiday performance, is this Friday, December 19, at 6:00pm, in the newly renovated Bakken Auditorium. We will be the first to benefit from the renovation! Please bring a jacket or sweater because of the air-conditioning (it's the first time Bakken will have a/c). I know several parents have called for additional tickets, but we are still waiting for parents not using the tickets to return them to us. Everyone with a ticket is guaranteed a seat up to 5:55pm. We will open the doors at 5:30pm and allow those with tickets to enter the auditorium. At 5:55pm, we will allow those without tickets to enter, but these persons may have to stand. If you received a ticket, best to arrive at 5:30pm. The `Ohana will serve light refreshments by Scudder Dining Hall after the performance, where parents will also pick up their children. Please make sure to check out your child with your child's teacher. I look forward to seeing everyone on Friday evening.
The Manoa Christmas Parade was cancelled on Saturday, December 13, due to the weather and flash flood warnings. I understand that this is the first time in 30 years since the beginning of the Manoa Christmas Parade that it is has been cancelled. Many thanks to MPI's preschool parents Andrea and Chris Stoebenau, who did an excellent job of organizing the event for our MPI families. Up to an hour before we received the call from the Lions' Club parade chairperson cancelling the parade, several preschool families were decorating wagons and trikes they would have used in the parade!
Lastly, there are many unclaimed items in the lost-and-found container. We strongly urge you to have your child check for lost items or that you come into the dining room to look for an item. After December 19, all unclaimed items will be given to charity.
Hoping for some sunshine and blue skies soon!
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey