Posted on May 24, 2014
This is one way we end the school year with the elementary students -- students, parents, and teachers in conversation together, with the student taking the lead, talking about his learning strengths and areas needing improvement. We feel that this experience is so critical to support student learning that we suspend classroom learning for two days in the fall and spring semesters and schedule conferences for home and school to focus on each student. Prior to the conference, all families receive their childʻs electronic performance continua and e-portfolio of learning, which is composed of select documents, including aural and visual recordings. To the best of their ability and level of cognitive awareness, students explain the reasons for their selections and what they are capable of doing. These reflections, we believe, are the essential components of learning which move learning forward and deepen understanding. And although the preschoolers themselves do not participate in conferences, it seems they are still very much present in the video documentation that parents and teachers discuss together.
At the recent school convocation held in the gym, all students, faculty, and staff gathered for reflection, song, and prayer to mindfully celebrate the abundant blessings of school year 2013-2014. It is always impressive to see 1500+ students from preschool through high school gathered under one roof surrounded by the faculty, an image of one school community joined together by an educational mission and vision, standing on the foundation of 105 years of history in Mānoa.
Although there are but three days remaining in this school year, these will be days brimming with learning, friendship, and discovery. Still ahead -- the annual fifth grade Leavetaking, Pueo Fly-Up Day, and Field Day. The excitement on campus is palpable!
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey