Posted on May 31, 2014
The other day, a preschooler and her mother stopped by my office to share this homemade treat -- a brownie owl! It wasnʻt the cuteness of the owl treat that caught me by surprise. It was their school spirit and the loving way in which mother and daughter spent their evening together, thinking of Mid-Pacific. As I reflect on the school year, the final week of 2013-2014 was a testament to some of the very best things we value as a school -- service to the school community, the importance of the family in partnership with the school, the notion of learning as a continuous journey, and the joys of friendship. The faculty and I are deeply grateful to our parents whose support through their time, talent, and treasure have contributed significantly to the successes of this school year and their children. The following photos and commentary highlight the events closing the school year --
On Tuesday, we recognized all students who provided service to their school community -- come rain or shine, fourth graders who stood at the autoline each morning and afternoon to open and close car doors (HUGSS - Helping Us Grow with Service and Smiles); third graders who escorted kindergartners safely to the dining room every morning (KKIDS - Kindergarten Kids); fifth graders who assisted in the preschool and kindergarten during lunch by eating with them, reading books in small groups, or helping our youngest with naptime (Peace Team). We also recognized a special group of students who volunteered as Peer Mediators during lunch recess. All students who played in the Christian School Athletic League basketball and volleyball teams received certificates. Pictured here are students who were acknowledged as first and second place winners of their grade levels in the International Peace Poems project.
Parents with special responsibilities as `Ohana leaders, room parents, chairpersons of events and committee members gathered for an appreciation brunch at Waioli Tea Room on Tuesday. Countless hours of service to the school!
The Fifth Graders were honored at Leavetaking on Wednesday morning to mark their transition to Middle School. The preschool and elementary students and all faculty and staff attended the ceremony, as well as the fifth gradersʻ families. It is always a bittersweet event -- proud to see students move forward in their learning journey, but also saddened to see students leave, some with whom we have had a relationship for eight years when they began as preschoolers. Iʻm just as disheartened to bid aloha to the studentsʻ parents -- with them we have watched their children grow intellectually, socially, physically, and emotionally.
Each year the fifth graders leave an imprint of their presence on campus. Kahu Davis blessed the studentsʻ self-portrait tiles and a class bench located by the water fountain. We wish our fifth graders an exciting journey into Middle School! They are well prepared for the challenges and experiences ahead.
I know the highlight of the week for all students was Field Day, which we should probably rename Water Fun Day. Students came to school dressed in swimwear and slippers and transformed the baseball field into a water park of sorts. Groups of students rotated through the most fun water games imaginable, while upbeat music wafted across the field. Parents commandeered each station, and they are just as much fun to watch as the children! Even older siblings from the middle school assisted with activities. It was great to see the great lawn with children on towels and mats enjoying a pizza lunch and each otherʻs company. Thanks to P.E. teacher Bruce Black for the overall organization. Special lei of aloha to Mrs. Lori Miano who chaired the event and details from games to food. This has to be the best way to end the school year -- just ask the students!
The faculty returned on Friday morning to end the year as we always do -- reflecting together on our work and identifying ways to improve all aspects of the program, from curriculum and assessment to special events and communication. That we still had the energy to be as focused and intentional as we were during these meetings speaks to the professionalism of the faculty. Kudos to them!
We will be gearing up for summer school, which begins June 9. My weekly blogs will resume with summer school where Iʻll continue to provide weekly updates for the duration of the summer program. Summer school faculty will also post blogs about their studentsʻ learning. Soon it will be time again to welcome a new academic year. Until then, my very best wishes to our families and students for a happy, fun-filled, safe summer! Welcome the languid days, brilliant sunsets, shave-ice treats, and family summer adventures.
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey