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What School Could Be in Hawaiʻi
58 minutes | Oct 18, 2021
S3:E3 Dr. Cara Chaudron, Hawaii’s 2022 Public Charter School Teacher of the Year
Speaking of a thousand points of light, my guest today is Dr. Cara Chaudron, a math enthusiast born and raised in Honolulu, Hawai’i. Dr. Chaudron teaches 6th grade math at the School For Examining Essential Questions of Sustainability, known as SEEQS, a public charter school near and dear to my heart. I have done two previous episodes with SEEQERS, including faculty member, Zoe Ingerson and school founder, Buffy Cushman-Patz. Dr. Chaudron earned her BA at Vassar College where she double majored in Education and Psychology, with a minor in French and Francophone Studies. She earned her Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) at Brandeis University, where she also became licensed as a Teacher of Students with Moderate Disabilities. She recently earned her Doctorate in Education from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa, where she used her dissertation to learn about the experiences and reflections of SEEQS’s alumni. Dr. Chaudron leads a student-centered, inquiry-based classroom that allows students to grow in their understanding and love of 6th grade math. She takes on many leadership roles at SEEQS and her value to the school is immeasurable. The 2021-2022 School Year marks Dr. Chaudron’s seventh year as part of the SEEQS community, where she gets to work with teachers and students who share her love of learning, desire for sustainable living, and passion for inquiry and exploration. Moreover, and this is the frosting on the cake, Dr. Chaudron was recently named the 2022 Hawaiʻi Charter School Teacher of the Year. She follows in the footsteps of other SEEQS teachers who received this award in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020 and is deeply worthy of the honor! My editor, creative consultant and sound engineer is the wondrously creative, Evan Kurohara (SØZEN), a self-taught audio engineer and producer born and raised in Hilo, Hawaiʻi. He is currently working in Honolulu and aspiring to reach new heights by dedicating himself to exceptional quality work through creative and analytical meticulousness. If you are interested in working with Evan, please contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org for a free consultation and quote of services. Our original theme music is provided by my friend of 40 years, virtuoso pianist, Michael Sloan. Michael has produced 12 albums with over 100 songs and is featured in Apple Music, Spotify, and all the other major music platforms. You can also find his work at his YouTube channel. He has listeners in over 100 countries and over 2000 cities, to date. Songs featured in this episode include, “A New Day,” “Oasis,” “Mysterious Dancer” and “Fuchsia.” Please support this podcast by providing a rating and review at your fav podcast app! The What School Could Be in Hawaiʻi podcast is funded by Ted Dintersmith and WhatSchoolCouldBe.org. Please stay safe, keep wearing your masks in crowded public spaces, and please get vaccinated. Until next time, a hui hou!, and please be in good health. Original Episode Music by Michael Sloan Episode Editor and Creative Consultant, Evan Kurohara The post S3:E3 Dr. Cara Chaudron, Hawaii’s 2022 Public Charter School Teacher of the Year appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
66 minutes | Oct 16, 2021
S3:E2 Of Green Labs and Piko Pals, with Lianna Lam
Speaking of 1000 points of light, today my guest is Lianna Lam, an educator and leader passionate about community and public schools who views both as places to seed and cultivate Aloha! Lianna’s love for public schools sprouted from her time at Ahuimanu Elementary School on the Windward Side of O’ahu, where she benefitted from loving and dedicated teachers. Lianna holds an environmental engineering degree from University of California at Davis and a Masters in Education from the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. She has worked as an engineer, science teacher, sustainability coordinator and as a STEM Coordinator. As an educator, she believes in the whole child approach, one that embraces and nurtures the mind, body, and spirit. This belief is most evident in her contributions to building and stewarding the Green Lab at Kaimuki Middle School, an outdoor classroom where she works with students and teachers to explore Hawaii’s environmental sustainability through hands-on, project-based, experiential learning. More recently, Lianna is the co-founder of Piko Pals, a new parent support program that mentors and builds community among parents of newborns. In addition to being a busy mom of three boys, Lianna continues to serve public education and community by contributing, as the Chair, to Waiʻalae Elementary Public Charter School’s Governing Board. Lianna has her feet firmly planted in both the public, and public charter school worlds here in Hawaiʻi, which is why I was so excited to interview her for this episode. In our conversation, we talked about how she became a self-directed learner and creative problem-solver, and why she is such a voracious consumer of books. Lianna’s insights on the nature of learning are brilliant, as are her insights into how to move innovation forward on a school’s campus (hint: small steps lead to big changes). We also talked about the skills, habits and dispositions of wise school leaders, and what educators need from their administrators to innovate. My editor, creative consultant and sound engineer is the wondrously creative, Evan Kurohara. Our original theme music is provided by my friend of 40 years, virtuoso pianist, Michael Sloan. Michael has produced 12 albums with over 100 songs and is featured in Apple Music, Spotify, and all the other major music platforms. You can also find his work at his YouTube channel. He has listeners in over 100 countries and over 2000 cities, to date. Songs featured in this episode include, “Oasis,” “Mysterious Dancer” and “Fuchsia.” Please support this podcast by providing a rating and review at your fav podcast app! The What School Could Be in Hawaiʻi podcast is funded by Ted Dintersmith and WhatSchoolCouldBe.org. Please stay safe, keep wearing your masks in crowded public spaces, and please get vaccinated. Until next time, a hui hou!, and please be in good health. Episode Music by Michael Sloan The post S3:E2 Of Green Labs and Piko Pals, with Lianna Lam appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
66 minutes | Sep 27, 2021
S3:E1 Reading The World, With Edna Hussey
My guest for this first episode of our 3rd season is Dr. Edna Hussey, a passionate and dedicated educator committed to the advancement of an educated citizenry, children’s rights to quality learning AND the professionalism of teachers. Mention Dr. Hussey’s name anywhere in Hawaiʻi and you will get mad respect and admiration. Folks say she operates at a different level, which I am sure she would humbly reject. She KNOWS what school could be because she has done it, repeatedly. Dr. Hussey is the principal of Mid-Pacific Institute’s preschool and elementary school, and was the former head of Epiphany School, which merged with Mid-Pacific in 2004. Her educational experiences span a wide range of ages of learners, from kindergarten through college, and teaching professionals. In this episode Dr. Hussey and I addressed some big questions, including the definition of an “astute teacher,” the nature of a Reggio Emilia education, what happens in the Zone of Proximal Development, how to help kids love reading and writing, her vision for “A New Literacy” and “reading the world,” the value of educator and education leader blogs, and much, much more. Dr. Hussey launched Hawaii’s first Reggio Emilia-inspired preschool at Mid-Pacific in 2005. She and Leslie Gleim coordinated the famed Reggio Emilia Wonder of Learning Exhibit in 2013 and the North American Reggio Emilia Alliance Summer Conference. She earned her doctorate in education as a member of the first University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa cohort in professional educational practice. Recently, Dr. Hussey was recognized as a Pacific Business News “Women Who Mean Business” honoree. The award recognizes outstanding women from public and private companies, and nonprofits who have made a difference in their industries and communities. Mid-Pacific’s Kupu Hou Academy Director, Dr. Mark Hines, wrote the following about Dr. Hussey: “What stands out most about Edna is her unwavering work on behalf of our keiki. She gives of herself wholeheartedly to make a difference in the lives of teachers who through her gentle and firm hand make a difference in the lives of their students. Due to her guidance, the PreK-5 program at Mid-Pacific is unmatched in their implementation of Reggio and Inquiry approaches in learning. You can walk in any classroom and see student-centered engaged learning happening that is based on the best research on child development. Just as importantly, she commits her time not just at Mid-Pacific, but with programs across the state and around the world to share, learn and build a better understanding of what learning should be for every child. She is grace under pressure, a reassuring voice and a staunch advocate of ‘Children First.'” Mid-Pacific Institute’s President, Dr. Paul Turnbull testifies that, “Dr. Hussey is a pillar of the education community; a person who has dedicated her professional life to children and to improving the quality of environments in which they learn and play. Faculty and staff are truly blessed to have such an accomplished and dedicated professional leading the preschool and elementary school program.” Original theme music and sound engineering provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Please send your feedback to MLTSinHawaii@Gmail.com, and we would love it if you gave us a review and a five-star rating! The post S3:E1 Reading The World, With Edna Hussey appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
78 minutes | May 24, 2021
S2:E24 On Being The Daylight, with Erin Medeiros
What does it mean to be the daylight for someone? Today my guest for this final episode of Season 2, Semester 2 is Erin Medeiros, an epic educator at Kanuikapono Learning Center, a K–12 Hawaiian-culture-focused school in Anahola on the island of Kauaʻi in Hawaiʻi. Erin seeks renewal in literature and hiking, biking, or playing at the beach with her educator husband, Jonathon and their two daughters. Jonathon was my guest at the start of this podcast semester. The Medeiros family lives in the moku of Puna in the ahupuaʻa of Kapaʻa. Erin is a National Board Certified English language arts and social studies teacher who is passionate about language and hopes to grow her students’ capacities to be curious, read critically, write energetically, speak clearly, and listen attentively. She views teaching as a deeply creative profession and encourages her students to develop their attention to the past and present, to observe and question life. She does whatever it takes to get her students outside and into the community at least once a week and loves to prepare them each year to perform at Poetry Out Loud. Erin believes that networks and human connections are vital to a healthy teaching career. She is or has been a new teacher mentor, a peer mediation advisor, a nature club advisor, a senior project coordinator and Hope Street Group Hawaiʻi State Fellow. In November of 2018 she facilitated a breakout session at the Schools of the Future Conference that, with fellow teacher-writers, advocated for and guided educators in methods of generating and publishing essays and blog posts. She serves humbly as a Merwin Creative Teaching Fellow, which takes inspiration from Hawaii’s renowned poet W. S. Merwin. Erin earned a BA in history from Lewis & Clark College and a masters in education from the University of Oregon. Huge thanks to Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations for his post production on this podcast. To learn more about Daniel, or hire him for your next music gig, click here. This is the last episode of our second season! We will be back in the Fall of 2021 with the 3rd season of this What School Could Be in Hawaiʻi podcast. Please stay safe, get vaccinated and be kind to one another. A hui hou! The post S2:E24 On Being The Daylight, with Erin Medeiros appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
70 minutes | May 17, 2021
S2:E23 Two Epic Teacher-Leaders, Melissa Montoya and Wrayna Fairchild
What must schools do to build caring and connected communities? What is student-driven learning? What learning challenges are authentic and real-world? What must schools do to help students become fully human? What does it mean that “school is in but class is outside”? How can schools help students and staff navigate the complexities of this age of acceleration? Why put Yertle the Turtle on trial? Today my guests are Wrayna Fairchild and Melissa Montoya, two charter school educators selected for the Hawaiʻi State Teacher Fellows program. To introduce them I am going to read the section of the Public Charter School Commission’s newsletter announcing their appointments to the cohort. “The Hawaiʻi State Teacher Fellows Program brings together outstanding public school educators from across the state and provides teachers with peer and community engagement skills, tools to facilitate focus groups, along with communication and advocacy strategies. The program is run out of the Hawaiʻi Department of Education’s Leadership Institute. The competitive applications process includes submission of narratives, recommendations and an interview. When asked why she applied for the Fellowship Program, Melissa Montaya (Kamaile Academy) said, ‘… I wanted to be a part of an organization that wants to elevate teachers, outside of my own organization. I believe in collective and collaborative teams, so I am beyond ecstatic to engage in opportunities that support public education on a larger scale. Hawaiʻi deserves a system that promotes excellence at all levels of education.’ Wrayna Fairchild (Voyager Public Charter School) said she applied for the program, ‘because I want to further develop as a teacher-leader. I have been fortunate to take on a teacher-leader role at my school and have had the opportunity to participate in national teacher-leader cohorts. Applying to be part of this special group that supports education at the state level seemed like a great fit for me.’ She added, ‘Hawaiʻi has some amazing, talented educators. By helping to connect these teachers, and working to support their classroom efforts, the practice of all is elevated.'” As always, our original theme music and post production is provided by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations in Honolulu. Please stay safe, friends! Continue to wear your masks where required and please, please get vaccinated. Until next time, a hui hou! The post S2:E23 Two Epic Teacher-Leaders, Melissa Montoya and Wrayna Fairchild appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
81 minutes | May 10, 2021
S2:E22 Hawaii’s Living Treasures, Art and Rene Kimura
What does wise school leadership look, sound and feel like? How do we, as a nation, unleash the creativity, the imagination, the innovation that we seem to know already exists in every kid from birth? What’s the core idea behind the creation of K-12 pipelines to fields in STEM and space? Why work so hard to create these pipelines for kids? What does it mean to live effectively in a human made world? Profoundly impacted by the Challenger disaster, twenty years ago, Art and Rene Kimura created Future Flight Hawai‘i, a space-themed educational program, while Art, a former teacher and school administrator, was assigned to the Office of Space Industries, part of the Hawai‘i Department of Business, Economic Development, and Tourism. When that office was closed in 2002, the Hawai‘i Space Grant Consortium adopted Future Flight Hawaiʻi as the centerpiece of its K-12 educational programs where it continues to grow and touch the lives of so many. With their ongoing affiliation with Hawai‘i Space Grant, Art and Rene have created a whole host of educational and public outreach activities that have reached an estimated 150,000 students, their parents, and teachers. Their work includes K-12 educational programs, science nights, courses for teachers, grants, and participation in local, national, and international engineering educational programs. For a sampling of programs Google search online for Future Flight Hawai‘i, or Astronaut Ellison Onizuka Day, or Astronaut Lacy Veach Day and/or Robotics in Hawai‘i. Former Hawai’i Governor Linda Lingle, in her 2008 State of the State Address, called Art Kimura the father of Hawai‘i robotics, which is epic. In 2015 Art and Rene were named as Living Treasures of Hawaiʻi. The Hawai‘i Space Grant Consortium posted the following comment online in that moment: “The HSGC ohana extends our heartfelt congratulations to Art and Rene Kimura upon being named Living Treasures of Hawai‘i. Among six recipients, the Kimuras were recognized as visionary educators and proponents of science. Bestowed by the Honpa Hongwanji Mission of Hawai‘i, the Living Treasure Award recognizes and honors individuals ‘who have demonstrated excellence and high standards of achievement in their particular fields of endeavor, and, through their continuous growth, learning and sharing, have made significant contributions towards enriching our society.'” As always, post production and original theme music was provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Please stay safe, everyone! Wear your masks and for the love of the gods, please get vaccinated. The post S2:E22 Hawaii’s Living Treasures, Art and Rene Kimura appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
50 minutes | Apr 26, 2021
S2:QKB3 “Making It” Author, Stephanie Malia Krauss: Part 2
What does it mean to live in an “open source society”? What impact is the so-called Age of Acceleration having on your school age children? When did the blue collar, white collar paradigm start to shift? What does it mean to be “cognitively fit”? What is the impact on kids of being hyperconnected but totally alone? Why will going to college or pursuing a postsecondary credential increasingly feel like shopping on a poorly organized Amazon? A few weeks ago Stephanie Malia Krauss published her first book, Making It: What Today’s Kids Need for Tomorrow’s World. Within hours it had rocketed to the top of Amazon’s education category. Why? Stephanie Malia and I tackle these aforementioned questions and more in this Part II of our podcast episode. Ted Dintersmith, author of What School Could Be said the following about Stephanie Malia’s book: “In her new book ‘Making It,’ Stephanie Malia Krauss delivers a wake-up call about the need to align the core of American education with the ever-changing demands of the workplace. She lays out a compelling vision of the currencies that will be essential to adults in coming decades and argues persuasively for a wholesale reimagination of how we educate all students — from toddlers through adults seeking to upgrade skills. For a roadmap to a better future, dive into this book!” To my educator friends in Hawaiʻi, and all educators out there, I echo Ted’s endorsement. During my reading all I could think about is how timely Stephanie Malia’s book will prove to be, especially after the events of this pandemic year. Stephanie Malia has deep roots in Hawaiʻi. She is Native Hawaiian, a kanaka maoli whose Tutu Nui (grandma) and her family are from from Moloka’i. Her aunties there were teachers, including supporting the state school on Kalaupapa. Her Papa Nui’s (grandfather) family is from Maui. Born on a plantation there, he was orphaned, but there is evidence that his ancestry traces back to royalty. Stephanie Malia was raised on the “mainland” (the other 49 states), but spent early summers with grandparents in Maunawili on O’ahu. She sees writing this book as her kuleana (responsibility) after eight years off the frontline and into national work. Stephanie Malia is the owner and principal at First Quarter Strategies, a senior advisor to Jobs for the Future and a staff consultant for the Youth Transition Funders Group. Learn more about her work and ways to collaborate with her at her website. Stay safe and in good health, everyone. The post S2:QKB3 “Making It” Author, Stephanie Malia Krauss: Part 2 appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
72 minutes | Apr 19, 2021
S2:E21 Beautiful Kauai’s Teacher of the Year, Serena Cox
How do you tend to a school garden if you can’t get to school? What does it mean to coach deeper learning? What is 20% time and how does a school get started with the concept? How did certain technologies like ScreenCastify and EdPuzzle help educators bridge the distance learning gap? What is parent coaching professional development and how does it help build healthy learning communities? What are co-created rubrics and what is the long term impact of films like Most Likely to Succeed? Today my guest is Serena Cox, a Comprehensive School Improvement Resource Teacher, in the Kauai Complex Area on the island of Kauai. I first met Serena when she was a science teacher and the deeper learning coach at Waimea Canyon Middle School on Kauai. In a Season 1 episode, I featured Serena’s principal, Melissa Speetjens. Serena was instrumental in helping me develop the 20% time segment in my new documentary film, The Innovation Playlist. She is the Kauai island Teacher of the Year 2021, a program of the Hawaii Department of Education that honors a teacher of the year from each of the 15 Hawaii complexes. Serena was 2015/2016 Teacher of the Year at the Dr. P. J. Fisher Schoo in South Carolina and the 2012/2013 Teacher of Year at the Greer Middle School, also in South Carolina. She is a certified PBLWorks facilitator, among many, many other awards and certificates. Serena has done what all fully committed teachers do: direct the drama club, coach cheerleading and soccer, and mentor young people that they might be most likely to succeed. Serena graduated summa cum laude from Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina with a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and has a Master’s degree in Middle Level Science. As always, our original theme music and post production is provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Check out his website and Facebook URL. Please stay safe, wear your masks and for the love of the gods, get vaccinated. A hui hou and we will see you in two weeks. The post S2:E21 Beautiful Kauai’s Teacher of the Year, Serena Cox appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
71 minutes | Apr 12, 2021
S2:E20 The Crazy Busy Puzzle Master, Buddy Leong
Fasten your seatbelts, listeners. This episode is going to blow your mind. Buddy Leong is a senior at Punahou School, which likely makes him 17 or 18 years old. Judging by his LinkedIn profile, he has accomplished more in his short life to date than most of us have accomplished in our lives combined. I think it’s best if I let Buddy introduce himself via the “About” section of his LinkedIn page. Buddy writes, “I’m an aspiring social entrepreneur, youth leader, and investor. In 2015, I was part of the youngest team to win a StartUp Weekend and place as the first runner up in the Global Startup Battle business competition. I am passionate about our Hawaiʻi community and have over 4,000 community service volunteer hours. Currently, I am the Executive Director of an organization called Virtual Student Experiences which brings students together with industry professionals willing to share their industry knowledge, experiences, and tips with students. To improve on my finance and computer science technical skills, I have completed Introduction to Python Data Science at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and am enrolled in Google’s Data Analytics Certificate Program. I have held world rankings in two different video games, been in the top 1% of three, and can solve a Rubik’s Cube in about 1 minute.” How’s about that for an “About” section on LinkedIn? And, crazy as this sounds, what Buddy writes above is only the half of it. He has been a technical manager, talent acquisition specialist, business co-founder, back end operations manager and much more. Oh yes, he has a passion for finance and understands all too well how grades, transcripts and SAT scores fall short when it comes to knowing what a young person knows, is and can do. Buddy’s parents are Hawaiʻi entrepreneurs, teachers and authors; it is through them that I became aware of Buddy’s work. Thank you, Kari and Evan Leong for partnering with me to make this interview happen! As always, our theme music and post production editing is provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Please stay safe, wear your masks and get vaccinated when it’s your time (don’t wait, do it now). The post S2:E20 The Crazy Busy Puzzle Master, Buddy Leong appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
75 minutes | Apr 5, 2021
S2:E19 Robert Pennybacker, Hawaii’s “Can Do” Renaissance Man
When I called Robert Pennybacker a “Renaissance Man” during my interview he seemed not to know why I attached the term to him. I can say with some confidence that folks in Robert’s network see him as exactly that. He is a poet, writer, producer, director, traveler, technologist, deep thinker and the very definition of both a specialist and generalist. He is also one of the founders of HIKI NŌ, arguably the most remarkable state student news network on Planet Earth. This is no joke, listeners; I am not engaging in hyperbole. There are lots of student news programs around the nation, but none with the mission and vision, nor the scope and reach of HIKI NŌ. A USC Film School graduate, Robert has driven HIKI NŌ forward for 10 years now, the last year a remarkable pivot during this Covid-19 pandemic. He is the Vice President of Learning Initiatives at PBS Hawai’i, where HIKI NŌ lives. This program’s impact on kids is simply staggering and today we are going to hear how it was built and what drove Robert to move it forward. Robert Pennybacker’s resume is long and deep. Early on he was a local television marketing director. In late 2000 he started his own advertising/production company called Pennybacker Creative, LLC, then joined PBS Hawaiʻi as Vice President of Creative Services in late 2007. His awards and recognition include the 1984 Regional Emmy Award for Television Promotional Spots; 3 Pele Awards (Hawaii’s ADDY Awards) for excellence in advertising; he oversaw the promotional campaign for one of the most successful network affiliation switches ever (when Hawaii’s NBC affiliate switched to FOX). Robert is an independent filmmaker who has written more than 20 documentaries about life and people in Hawaii. As I wrote earlier, he is a poet and writer. In 2007 he became the Vice President of Creative Services at PBS Hawai’i and oversaw all local programming, on-air promotion, interstitial production, station branding, and the production of on-air fundraising for the station, as well as management of personnel. Robert and I go back pretty far. We played high school football together back in the 70s at Punahou School. He was a tight end, I played center, which makes this moment special for me. As always, our post-production and original theme music is provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Check out Daniel’s website to learn more, or to book him for your next music gig. If you love these episodes please write us a review and rate us in your favorite podcast store. Stay safe, wear your masks and get vaccinated when it is your turn. And bring kindness and compassion into the world! The post S2:E19 Robert Pennybacker, Hawaii’s “Can Do” Renaissance Man appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
71 minutes | Mar 22, 2021
S2:E18 Character Teaching Knowledge Practice, with Kaleialoha Aarona-Lorenzo
Today my guest is Kalei ʻAʻarona-Lorenzo, a kumu, or teacher of music, culture and Hawaiian language at the Kamehameha Schools Maui campus. She is the 3rd educator from this campus, including middle school teachers, Kui Gapero and Ululani Shiraishi, that I have featured in this series. I divided this interview up into three parts. Part I is all about Kalei, her background, her music and how she connects music to place. Part II is about her philosophy of education, a section that includes a very interesting conversation about grades. Part III is a section I called “Your Happy Place,” with questions about a visit to KSBE Maui by the Stanford Talisman acapella group and her founding of the Hawaiian Music Ensemble. Kalei is considered a legend by faculty and students alike at KS Maui. In this conversation you will find her precise, measured, warm, spiritual, at times conflicted (about grades, for example) and deeply reflective. She brings to her teaching all of her head and all of her heart, and a lifetime of experience making music. Starting back when her parents were choir members at Kaumakapili Church in Kalihi and continuing today as she nurtures her Hawaiian Music Ensemble at KS Maui, she connects her life and her music to the aina, the land she loves. Kalei founded this Hawaiian Music Ensemble back in 2006 with three students. Today the group has 48 members; 24 dancers and 24 musicians. Kalei has taken this ensemble south to places in French Polynesia (where they performed for its president) and New Zealand. She has a bachelors in music and Hawaiian language, and a masters in secondary curriculum and instruction from the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. She is a 1985 graduate of the Kamehameha Schools Kapālama campus. Her full resume is long and deep in action research. As always, our original theme music and post production editing was done by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations. Please stay safe, wear your masks, get vaccinated when it is your turn and bring kindness and compassion into the world. The post S2:E18 Character Teaching Knowledge Practice, with Kaleialoha Aarona-Lorenzo appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
70 minutes | Mar 15, 2021
S2:E17 The Most Beautifully Relevant Learning, with Florence Scott
This was Florence Scott‘s first podcast interview so it was understandable that she would text me after the fact asking if it was normal to be rethinking her responses to my questions. In some ways, her text to me illustrates at the deepest possible level who Florence is: A deeply reflective educator who lives and breathes relevant learning. Florence believes with all her mind and all her heart that learning is constant day in and day out, year in and year out. After an hour of interviewing her I had the overwhelming desire to return to middle school, which was a completely crummy experience for me some 50 years ago at Punahou School. Back then my teachers saw me as a mediocre student (I have the grade reports plus comments to prove this) who seemed to fail each time I was asked to report my learning on a test or in a paper. Ugh. In reality I was a deeply reflective kid who lived and breathed the outdoors, making things, books and…family dinner table Socratic seminars. So it goes without saying that had I had Florence Scott in the 6th, 7th or 8th grade I would have been most likely to succeed, most likely to shine when it came to the meta process of “knowing thyself.” Florence, in so many ways reminds me of my favorite high school teacher, Paul “Doc” Berry, who inspired me to push all boundaries and became my lifelong friend and mentor. I imagine Florence’s kids, years or decades from now, searching for her on Facebook so they can tell her how much she supported their inherent creativity, imagination and innovation. My conversation with her was a total blast; I hope you come away from it with a bushel of ideas and small steps that might move your educator practice towards student-driven learning. Florence said the following about herself in her resume (which I converted to the 3rd person): [She is ]…a dynamic, versatile education professional with more than nine years managing academic programs and leading education initiatives while supporting and empowering students and colleagues. She is an accomplished instructional leader able to conceptualize goals and plan accordingly to address the needs of all students’ unique learning modalities. And, she has a proven track record of developing and implementing curriculum activities that promote social, emotional, and cognitive development. Florence serves as a middle school humanities teacher, guide, coach, mentor and navigator at Hawaii Technology Academy’s Kauai Campus. She has also served in various English language arts positions in both South Carolina, Maryland and Great Britain. She has a bachelors degree in English and a masters degree in Education. As always our original theme music and post production editing was provided by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations. Friends, stay safe, wear your masks, get vaccinated and bring kindness into the world. We need lots and lots of kindness right now. The post S2:E17 The Most Beautifully Relevant Learning, with Florence Scott appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
67 minutes | Mar 8, 2021
S2:E16 Why Small Schools are Epic, with Jeanne Wilks
What is the true value of small schools? In what ways might we break up larger schools into smaller units, and why? What is the value add of an education that is both secular and faith-based? Why is teaching a sacred act and in what ways can bad teachers be destructive to the lives of kids? What is the core of the debate between content and skills and how are skills different from strengths? What do we do about kindergarten teachers quitting their jobs, citing top down “seat time” mandates as…child abuse? And in what ways did teachers become learners again because of Covid-19? These and other questions are addressed in today’s episode. My guest is Jeanne Wilks who served as the Interim Head of Holy Nativity – a small, independent school in East O’ahu – from July 2019. After leading the school during the challenges of transition and COVID-19, the board appointed her permanent Head of School. Someone who knows Jeanne well said she is grounded in her beliefs, possesses a hold-your-ground kind of confidence (but is humble), is gently persistent, is an optimist and is possessed of the ability to trust and empower. What a testament! Wilks holds a masters in Private School Leadership from the University of Hawai’i and has been an independent school administrator since 2013. She also has a background in audio engineering and food science. Most of all, she is a team builder who has, according to folks who know her, navigated a terrible pandemic using her fantastic listening skills and ability to build trust. From the Holy Nativity School website we read that the school has a rich history of providing a personalized approach to learning in a small, intimate, setting for students starting school as three year-olds and continuing on through the 6th grade. Small classes, nurturing teachers, challenging curriculum, and integrated technology create the foundation that has continually encouraged outstanding achievements as HNS students display the inherent pleasure of lifelong learning. As always, post-production is provided by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations. To learn more about Daniel, or to hire him for your next music gig, check out his website and Facebook URL. Please stay safe and bring compassion into the world! The post S2:E16 Why Small Schools are Epic, with Jeanne Wilks appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
47 minutes | Mar 3, 2021
S2:QKB2 “Making It” Author, Stephanie Malia Krauss: Part 1
This morning, mainland time, Stephanie Malia Krauss became a first time author. Her book is titled Making It: What Today’s Kids Need for Tomorrow’s World. Ted Dintersmith, author of What School Could Be said the following about Stephanie Malia’s book: In her new book ‘Making It,’ Stephanie Malia Krauss delivers a wake-up call about the need to align the core of American education with the ever-changing demands of the workplace. She lays out a compelling vision of the currencies that will be essential to adults in coming decades and argues persuasively for a wholesale reimagination of how we educate all students — from toddlers through adults seeking to upgrade skills. For a roadmap to a better future, dive into this book! To my educator friends in Hawaiʻi, and all educators out there, I echo Ted’s endorsement. During my reading all I could think about is how timely Stephanie Malia’s book will prove to be, especially after the events of this pandemic year. Stephanie Malia has deep roots in Hawaiʻi. She is Native Hawaiian, a kanaka maoli whose Tutu Nui (grandma) and her family are from from Moloka’i. Her aunties there were teachers, including supporting the state school on Kalaupapa. Her Papa Nui’s (grandfather) family is from Maui. Born on a plantation there, he was orphaned, but there is evidence that his ancestry traces back to royalty. Stephanie Malia was raised on the “mainland” (the other 49 states), but spent early summers with grandparents in Maunawili on O’ahu. She sees writing this book as her kuleana (responsibility) after eight years off the frontline and into national work. To learn more about Stephanie Malia go to StephanieMaliaKrauss.com. To purchase her book, which I recommend, search for Making It on Amazon.com. Part II of this interview will be coming soon! Stay safe and in good health, everyone. The post S2:QKB2 “Making It” Author, Stephanie Malia Krauss: Part 1 appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
69 minutes | Mar 1, 2021
S2:E15 Teacher Surfer Writer Builder Poet: Jonathon Medeiros
What do teachers need from their administrators? According to Jonathon Medeiros a bit of magic. What magic, you ask? To be known, really known, and respected for the experiences they bring to every conversation about students and learning. Jonathon writes: Too often, while teachers are reaching toward our students, inviting them in and making them feel valuable, administrators are planning meetings in air-conditioned offices by filling time slots and checking compliance boxes instead of thinking about who their teachers are, what we might need, what we bring to the table. These are opportunities missed. Jonathon has been teaching and learning about Language Arts and rhetoric for 15 years with his students on Kauaʻi. He frequently writes about education policy and is the former director of the Kauaʻi Teacher Fellowship. He also enjoys building things, surfing, and spending time with his wife (a future episode guest) and daughters. He is currently working on a few projects, including a collection of essays, a collection of poems from his familyʻs daily writing practice during the global pandemic shutdown, and a journal about his days in the ocean. He is a self-styled contrarian, so stay tuned to see how that plays out! Jonathon has been member of the Hawaii Department of Education – State Office, Leadership Institute. He has been a Hawaiʻi State Teacher Fellow and a WASC visiting team member. He has a M.Ed. in Teaching and Learning from the University of Oregon: an M.A. in Literature from Portland State University: and a B.A. in English from University of Portland. As always, our theme music and post production editing is provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Please stay safe, wear your masks and bring kindness and compassion to the world. The post S2:E15 Teacher Surfer Writer Builder Poet: Jonathon Medeiros appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
67 minutes | Feb 22, 2021
S2:E14 Traveling to Two Moons, with Matthew Tom
What can we educators do to insure that kids coming out of elementary school don’t have their natural, innate curiosity, creativity and ingenuity crushed out of them by middle school, and later, high school? What is student-driven learning and what is the real meaning of student agency? In this episode I interviewed Matthew Tom, a teacher and media specialist at Robert Louis Stevenson Middle School in central Honolulu on O’ahu. Matthew engages his students in ways I find completely inspiring and want everyone to know about. He is the Faculty advisor for Stevenson’s media service organization, which specializes in event photography and producing digital media content for the school. Matthew’s program seeks to build and maintain a positive campus culture, excite students about photography and videography, and build student skills in digital media production. Matthew is also the faculty advisor for Tusitala, which is the Literary and Arts Magazine at Stevenson recently recognized by the National Council of Teachers of English. Tusitala means “the teller of tales” in Samoan and is the name Samoans gave to Robert Louis Stevenson when he traveled there. Matthew has taught or been an edtech specialist in Hawaii, Japan and Washington. His undergraduate in English is from Willamette University. He has a masters in curriculum and teaching from the University of Oregon and is currently in a professional practice, doctoral program at the University of Hawaiʻi at Manoa. Matthew’s teacher website is an absolute wonderland of student exhibitions of learning and imaginative curriculums. In the years ahead Matthew will be one of Hawaii’s leaders when it comes to students owning their learning journeys. As always, our theme music and post production is provided by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations. For more on Daniel, or to book him for your next music gig, check out his new website or Facebook page. Please stay safe, wear your masks and bring kindness into the world. Until next time! The post S2:E14 Traveling to Two Moons, with Matthew Tom appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
66 minutes | Feb 15, 2021
S2:E13 Unrulr’s Capturing Learning, with Fred Delse and Will Reppun
What is the purpose of an education? When and where does learning happen? What does it mean to evaluate learning? What does “assessment” mean? What does it mean when we talk about “capturing” learning (as if learning is some sort of fish in the sea)? What is the relationship between student and teacher when student-driven learning sits at the core of the classroom, or learning space? It’s these and other essential questions Fred Delse and Will Reppun tackled when they decided to found and develop the learning capture app, Unrulr, which is now being tested and used by public, private and charter schools here in Hawaiʻi. Marc Allard, a science, engineering and design teacher at the Menlo School in California said the following about Unrulr: I care about process; it’s super important. And Unrulr is one of the only ways, if I think about it, to get evidence of process. Even if we’re not dealing with COVID, this is good for process. Evan Beachy, Strategy and Transformation at Kamehameha Schools, states: What makes Unrulr special is that it speaks the language of social media, which is the parlance of today’s youth. Being able to express yourself with words, pictures, videos and other formats means that you can paint a really unique picture of who you are and what you’ve done. But more important than all of that, you can do this in a way that encourages collaboration and discussion with others. Fred Delse has worked in roles varying from software engineer to product management to corporate administration for Hewlett-Packard, Yahoo, Tetris Online and ‘ike Hawaii. He has two masters degrees; one from Stanford and the other from The Anderson School of business at UCLA. Will Reppun is a graduate of Punahou School here in Honolulu and has a degree in computer science from Harvard University. He was an optimization engineer at Navatek, a technical director and instructor at New Horizons Prep in Shanghai and a senior engineer at Exiger Analytics. Most recently he was director of product development at Data House in Honolulu, where he met Fred and they hatched Unrulr. As always, the original music and sound editing in these episodes is provided by Daniel Gilad of DG Sound Creations. Check out his new website! If you like or love this podcast, please give us a rating and review at your favorite podcast store. Take care, be safe and please bring kindness into the world. The post S2:E13 Unrulr’s Capturing Learning, with Fred Delse and Will Reppun appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
74 minutes | Nov 30, 2020
S2:E12 Aaron Jamal Schorn, Capstone Man
My guest today for this final episode of Semester 1 of Season 2 is Aaron Jamal Schorn, Nalukai Foundation Program and Academy Startup Camp Director, and Capstone Coordinator at Hawai’i Preparatory Academy on Hawai’i Island. At Nalukai, Aaron creates and implements curriculum, hustles to find mentors and teaches digital storytelling. Outside of Nalukai he is focused on creating student-centered systems to authentically tell the story of learning communities. Aaron has published articles on local magazines including this one about teaching in the time of COVID. At Hawai’i Preparatory Academy (HPA) he teaches Digital Journalism and Social Entrepreneurship courses that are centered around Product-Based Learning, the Lean Startup methodology, project management, and building digital brands. His classes are supported by mentors across industries working directly with students on their products. Aaron’s professional background is in international business, digital storytelling, operations, management, UX/UI, and content creation. Most importantly, Aaron is the Capstone Coordinator at HPA, which gives kids in the 5th, 8th and 12th grades the opportunity to build a project that elevates and improves their surrounding communities. Aaron’s work on capstone programs is pioneering and will globally shape the way these types of opportunities are given to students in the future. Back in February, 2020 his 90 capstone students were moving intently towards the second half of their projects. Then, COVID-19 hit and everything went upside down. Undeterred, not only did HPA students execute pandemic pivots and complete their projects, they also completed their public exhibitions of learning, this time in virtual spaces built and designed by Aaron. I was one of the observers invited into these digital exhibition spaces. It was…epic. In this Semester 1, Season 2 capstone episode Aaron and I dive deep into what school could be, what learning could be, what student agency would be if we turned ownership of learning over to them. As you listen to Aaron, note the joy in his voice when he talks about Hawaiʻi and the ways his students are shaping its present, and future. Aaron is a dear friend who has inspired me to jump higher and reach further towards this show’s credo, which is “100% by Yesterday.” As always, our show’s theme music, and editing is provided by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. To learn more about Daniel, or to book him for your next music gig, navigate to his Facebook page. If you love this episode, please give us a rating and review at your favorite podcast store. Semester 2 of Season 2 starts again in February. Until then, stay safe, wear your masks, stay physically distant from one another and please, bring kindness into the world. We need more. The post S2:E12 Aaron Jamal Schorn, Capstone Man appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
93 minutes | Nov 23, 2020
S2:E11 Writer, Poet, Teacher, Mother, TFA Alum: Jannica Breslin
Metamorphosis, dragon flies, Hoʻokipa writers, coffee talks, Poetic Couture, Carol Dwek and finding the Filipina within, oh my! My guest today is Jannica Breslin in an episode I am calling my Teach for America Special. This is a partnership with Jill Baldemor, the Executive Director of Teach for America Hawai`i. When I offered Jill the opportunity to name a TFA Hawaiʻi alum to be on this podcast, after some consideration, she named Jannica Breslin. There have been many TFA alums as guests on this podcast, but none specifically named by TFA Hawaii’s top brass, which is way cool. Jannica is a middle school language arts teacher at Konawaena Middle School on Hawai‘i Island. She was a 2009 Teach for America corps member, which would make this her 12th year in education. Jannica was in the same cohort year as Justin Brown, who I interviewed on this podcast for Season 1. TFA Hawaiʻi Executive Director, Jill Baldemor said the following about her pick for this episode: “Jannica is a humble local girl, a public school graduate of Farrington High School, and not as well known, but definitely a bright light in her approach and leadership, which has been especially apparent during COVID. She was one of the first teachers to proactively stand up informal teacher collaboration groups to share best practices in distance learning and she’s helped her school a bunch in the transition.” In this episode Jannica and I ranged across a variety of subjects including her passion for writing, her love of vulnerabilities and growth mindsets, her Aloha for TFA and what it takes to get middle school kids excited about words. She is funny, thoughtful (there are long pauses between my question and the start of her responses) and she cares deeply about children. Jannica teaches with another, former podcast guest, Shawna Gunnarson. What an extraordinary opportunity for kids in Kona to learn from Shawna and Jannica! As always, our theme music and editing is done by Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. You can learn more about Daniel at his Facebook page. I am super pleased to note that 41 out of 41 listeners have given our podcast a 5 star rating. We appreciate this very much and thank you for the wonderful written reviews. If you love these episodes with remarkable and innovative educators and education leaders, please give us your own rating and write us a review at your favorite podcast store. The post S2:E11 Writer, Poet, Teacher, Mother, TFA Alum: Jannica Breslin appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
83 minutes | Nov 16, 2020
S2:E10 Marching for Justice and Planet Earth, with Kawika Ke Koa Pegram
What exactly is student voice? This question has become the hot topic in public, private and charter schools here in Hawaiʻi, for which I am glad. Sometimes the conversation revolves around giving students agency over their learning. At other times we talk about public exhibitions of learning and the ways students might articulate what they know and what they can do. Conversations around student activism, especially around ways to encourage kids to be politically active, seem fewer and farther between. I wonder sometimes if we are afraid to encourage this kind of deep community involvement for fear that parents might object or schools might feel liable. My guest today is Kawika Ke Koa Pegram, a recent graduate of Waipahu High School now matriculating at American University in Washington, DC. He cares not for these debates, in my humble opinion, because he is too busy acting on his beliefs, political and otherwise. Kawika is a member of the Youth Commission for the State of Hawaiʻi. He is also the Executive Director of the Hawaiʻi Youth Climate Coalition and a Youth Activist for the United States Youth Climate Strike. Kawika has written articles on climate change for both the Honolulu Star Advertiser and Hawaiʻi Business Magazine. He was especially active in the leadup to local and national elections here and in Nevada in the Fall of 2020. He is one of more than 60 student leaders who have stepped up to lead climate strikes in cities and towns across the country in 2019 as part of a global school strike for climate action modeled after the example of Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg. He was inspired to become a leader for climate action after East Island, a small and unpopulated island in the French Frigate Shoals, was swallowed up by the sea after a hurricane last fall. He has forged contacts with the Hawaiʻi chapters of organizations like 350.org and the Sierra Club, as well as progressive political groups like Our Revolution and The Progressive Movement of Hawaiʻi. His role in the movement involves creating messaging, working directly with student government groups across Hawaii to get youth on board, and gathering support from elected officials like Senator Mazie Hirono. In short, Kawika Ke Koa Pegram is a – to use Guy Kawasaki’s term – a “remarkable person,” and he is just getting started. In this interview I pitched him some pretty philosophical questions about life on Planet Earth and range vs. specificity. He knocked them out of the park. So please enjoy and if you love this conversation, give us a rating and review at your fav podcast store. As always, my sound editor and the creator of our theme music is Daniel Gilad at DG Sound Creations. Dial him up at his Facebook Page. The post S2:E10 Marching for Justice and Planet Earth, with Kawika Ke Koa Pegram appeared first on @MLTSinHawaii .
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