Posted on May 6, 2012
The images shared in this week's entry convey the many ways in which our learning community works together to support our students. Like the individual flowers that make up this stunning arrangement many of you enjoyed at the recent May Day performance, so, too, are the many individuals -- students, parents, faculty, staff, friends -- who reflect the values we honor, cherish, and perpetuate at MPI.
We learn from the example of our high school friends. The MPI hula halau, under the direction of kumu Lanakila Casupang, share the story of Manoa, where we live, work, play, and where our earliest friendships with peers and adults sprout and grow like the kupukupu.
Weeks before the performance, the Tech Lab is transformed into a sewing workshop where parents create costumes for over 250 students.
The evening before the performance, more parents come out to prepare the stage. Everything is done with kind regard for the children, from sewing skirt hems and delicate, billowy sleeves to the careful selection, pruning, and arrangement of tropical flowers.
The children take center stage. They are focused, seemingly undaunted by the friendly audience before them. Synchronized movements, resonant voices, and graceful gestures. The nod of the head and turn of the wrist. Confidence exuding.
But there is one more event that day. I stop by the opening exhibit of original video by the School of the Arts students and photography by talented kindergartners at the Ong King Gallery in Chinatown. Everywhere I turn is an excited kindergartner, with proud parents, siblings, and grandparents not far behind.
At the end of a week enriched by cultural experiences, the images of children hard at work, at play, and in performance persist. Respect for cultural practices, appreciation for aesthetic beauty and imaginative creations, understanding of history, community engagement, and the notion of learning honorable traditions -- these are some of the values we wish to perpetuate for the sake of our students.
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey