Posted on September 27, 2015
So just who is "most likely to succeed"?
The film of the same, which Mid-Pacificʻs Parent Community Association (PCA) sponsored this past Friday, provoked our thinking about the educational landscape in the U.S. We are a nation driven by accountability, often in the form of standardized testing. The curriculum in many schools becomes teaching to high-stakes testing, which inhibits the implementation of a diverse, meaningful, rich curriculum. As Dr. Mark Hines explained in his context for the film, Mid-Pacific has been aware of the times . . . they are a changin'. The adoption of the International Baccalaureate, development of theSchool of the Arts, design of the Weinberg Technology Plaza and Wood Hall, and the Reggio-inspired, inquiry-based preschool and elementary are a natural outgrowth of the innovative spirit of Mid-Pacific. We are seeing the evolving identity of Mid-Pacific, keenly attuned to the cultural forces that impact education. Everything we are doing is to address the factors that contribute to meaningful, relevant, learning experiences, while mindful of the tests our students still need to take to enter college. The post-film panelists (representatives of students, parents, and faculty) shared the impact of innovative teaching and learning in inquiry-based, project-based, and international baccalaureate classrooms. We call this curricular content and approach "deeper learning." We are addressing what we mean by "success" and that our families also support our vision of success for all learners. This is, after all, the film's central question. Let's hope this question about "success" becomes the center of our school wide conversations about the raison d'être of Mid-Pacific.
Our Fifth Graders returned from three glorious days at Camp Mokuleia last week Monday through Wednesday. Rather than try so summarize here the impact of their experience together, I invite you to read the teachers' blog. On the last day at camp, students were asked to create a title encapsulating their learning at camp. Well worth your read.
I happened to be passing a group of kindergartners outside Bakken Auditorium the other morning. Ms. Jordan was teaching basic skills on the use of an iPad and iPod camera as a tool for documenting their learning. What better way to teach these skills than in the field? I'm amazed by the keen eye our children have for selecting through-provoking images of interesting detail.
E Kūlia Kākou! Letʻs strive and aspire together!
For our children,
Edna L. Hussey, Ed.D.