Posted on September 6, 2014
What better way to begin the school year than with a family celebration right on campus! Over 400 children, moms, dads, grandparents, aunts, uncles, faculty converged at the preschool/elementary for picnic fare, family relays, and some good ol' talk story. From grilled burgers to shaved ice to chili and a buffet of desserts, this annual event (going strong for over ten years, nearly twenty years if we count back pre-MPI elementary years!) is one of several events on campus that brings our family community together. And what perfect weather! Sunny with tradewinds. Special thanks to parents of fifth graders and our fifth grade students for working together to make the Welcome BBQ a success. Leis of aloha to parent co-chairs Andrea Stoebenau and Jennifer Ho for their planning and coordination -- certainly the best Iʻve experienced! One of the sure signs of success? Many of our students didn't want to go home! Check out the following photos -- can you guess some of the games being played? I really enjoyed watching parents and their children having so much fun!
Got it? Water balloon toss, leap frog relay, and wheelbarrow relay.
Parents of students in grades three through five completed their rite of initiation at the last set of Open Houses at the preschool and elementary -- three since August! Having visited each teacher's presentation in preschool and the elementary grades, I have an impression of the collective experience, and I am struck by the consistency of philosophy, instructional approach, curricular foci, and
assessment practices across these grade levels. If you were a parent sitting in your child's classroom, parents in other classrooms were having similar experiences of engagement. Often, parents leave traces of their visit for their children -- a drawing or a letter. Parents in the upper elementary were leaving photos taken on their child's iPad and and messages for their children. At the close of the evening, I usually take my place at the gate to thank parents for participating in Open House. My quick assessment from the smiles, hand shakes, and comments as parents walk past me -- success on all fronts. Several parents commented -- I wish I could be in my child's classroom! Parents, keep reading the teachers' weekly blogs posted on Sundays after 5:00pm so you can vicariously be in your child's classroom.
First and second graders from one of the character education classes threw a surprise birthday recognition for Miss Amanda on her special day. From recycled materials, they fashioned a crown of pipe cleaners and necklace with a toilet tissue roll pendant. Imaginative! The best birthday present, they discussed in class, was to keep the school as clean as possible so she wouldn't have to work so hard on her birthday. So the children posted a sign at the front gate and more signs in the dining room. Evidence of learning some very important values -- respect, collaborating with one another on the gift ideas, caring for others, and caring for the environment.
E Kūlia Kākou! Letʻs strive and aspire together!
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey, Ed.D.