Monthly Archives: April 2014

Maʻi Hoʻokaʻawale ʻOhana & the Journey Into Exile


As part of ʻImiloa’s traveling exhibit: I Want the Wide American Earth: An Asian Pacific American Story, there will be a special presentation titled Maʻi Hoʻokaʻawale ʻOhana and the Journey into Exile: Hansen’s Disease in Hawaiʻi by Dr. Kerri Inglis of UHH.

The lecture takes place on Thursday, May 1 at 4 pm,  ʻImiloa Astronomy Center. The cost is $8 for members, $10 for non-members and includes admission to the exhibit.

From 1866 to 1969, approximately 8,000 persons were quarantined or exiled to the leprosy settlement at Kalaupapa.  Endeavoring to recover the voices of the patients who lived through this significant moment in Hawaiian history, Inglis will present her research on the letters and articles that patients and their loved ones wrote to the Board of Health and Hawaiian language newspapers in the 19th century, and share oral histories that were collected in the 20th century.  Together these records tell the story of a disease, a changing society’s reaction to that disease, and the long lasting consequences of that experience for Hawai‘i and its people.

For more information, check out the ʻImiloa blog.

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Call for Presenters: HAMS (Hawaii Association of Middle Schools) Conference


Who knows middle level students better than our teachers who are entrenched in middle level education?

The Hawaii Association of Middle Schools organization is the state affiliate of the AMLE (Association of Middle Level Educators) and they are seeking presentation proposals from YOU. Here’s more information:

The HAMS 25th Annual Middle Level Education Conference will be held on October 25th, 2014 at ʻIolani School on ʻOahu. We are seeking presenters to share their successful experiences and insights relative to the recommendations for improving middle level grade schools in Turning Points 2000. The Conference is free for ONE person/presentation and $150 reimbursement for airfare will be provided for ONE neighbor island person per presentation. The application is due May 6th, 2014.

Presenter application form

*Please let Cathy know if you are planning on presenting or if you need help with the proposal.


Getting Down to the Nitty Gritty


More than half of the dissertation is written. Now it’s time to get the kind of feedback that as a writer I DREAD. It’s not about the creation. Now it’s about the minutiae of editing. I hate editing. I love crafting and revising. I love pushing the boundaries of genre. Editing is the hard necessity that just anchors me in the work, which is a good thing, but I like to fly. So my mantra for this week as I get into the rechecking resources, putting things in APA order, dotting i’s and crossing t’s is that this life cannot begin until I push through the end of my comfort zone.

Here’s to precision and consistency – the uncomfortable journey that I will undertake.


Chapter 3 – Done!



I have never been a particularly linear, chronological writer even though I try to function in a very step-by-step, linear, chronological way in my job. By nature, I am more of a recursive spiral thinker, so chapters 2 (research) and 3, methodology have been worked on piecemeal then abandoned for months.

With the finishing of chapter 3, I can finally stop meandering through these two chapters and finally put it to rest for a little while. I feel like I birthed triplets with 2 more babies to deliver.

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In Honor of Poetry Month and Teachers

Poetry should be spoken. It should hum out of your vocal chords and rumble through the air like static electricity. In this poetry month, here’s to spoken word poetry and the teachers who continue to create miracles in the classroom.

“When I Become a Teacher” (02:17)

Sinnea Douglas was 18 years old and had just graduated from Philadelphia’s Science Leadership Academy (SLA) when she performed this poem to close out SLA’s keynote presentation at the ISTE Conference in 2011. She’s now at a university, studying to become a teacher.

To This Day Project — Shane Koyczan (07:37)

Canadian spoken word artist Shane Koyczan struck a nerve with his achingly personal poem about bullying; this phenomenal version, with animation from more than 80 different artists, went viral in 2013.

“Miracle Workers” by Taylor Mali (04:03)

Taylor Mali is sort of the poet laureate of teachers — he was a teacher for nine years and reached fame with his incredible piece “What Teachers Make.” Also notable was his now-complete 1000 Teachers Project to inspire and recruit new educators.

First-Grade Students Inspired by Spoken-Word Artists (03:07)

Following a week-long workshop by teaching poets Sarah Kay and Phil Kaye of Project V.O.I.C.E., even the littlest students at Punahou School were inspired to perform.

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Living the Questions Now

writing letter


“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” 

–Rainer Maria Rilke from Letters to a Young Poet

I was surprised to see that I haven’t been writing here, when really my mind has been writing non-stop, except for the one dream that I actually remembered about my friend Tina being married to Jason Momoa. So vibrant, and so strange.

This is my “need to finish by May” countdown. It is April 16. I am living the questions now. Perhaps I will gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer. Perhaps perhaps perhaps. Please Lord let it not be like Keahi’s birth that was squarely happening in my back until I was in so much pain I could not breathe and my lips and fingers and feet went numb.

Let this birthing of this freaking dissertation be more like a slumber into death. One last gasp for breath and then peace.




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PD Tuesday Opportunity: The Haumana at the Movies


 This film by Keo Woolford premiered at the 2013 Hawaii International Film Festival to rave reviews, but, sadly,  it had just one showing in Hilo during that festival. If you missed it, Palace Theatre is showing it again before Merrie Monarch –

Friday and Saturday, April 18 & 19 at 7 pm

Sunday, April 20 at 2:30 pm



DIY Professional Development

What I am relearning in my 2 weeks of being in the 7th grade English classroom is that teachers crave PD that is relevant to doing a better job in their classrooms, for their kids RIGHT NOW, however, it is too easy to get caught up in the job of teaching and assessing and looking one week, one day, one class period ahead. Too often, PD is offered and we have to struggle to figure out how we could use this on Monday. If we cannot figure it out within 5 minutes, then we often put it out of our mind. Practice makes permanent, but if we cannot figure out where we can “practice” this new strategy or this new tech tool, then it’s out of sight, out of mind.

Here’s a quick, 5 minute mini “film festival” series of choose your own PD videos on how to use new-media tech tools in your classroom. If something catches your fancy, try it out, if not, it was just 5 minutes of your time.

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Free Webinar: Closing the Circle



What: Free webinar on Closing the Circle: Analyzing and Improving Assessments for Learning online on Thursday, April 10 at 11-12. If you are not able to make it, they will send you the link to the archive.

More information:  See how:

  • assessment can be worked into a flipped classroom or blended learning environment
  • non-traditional forms of assessment, such as peer-to-peer learning, can produce useful information for the teacher
  • warm-up, group, and closure activities can have an assessment component
  • teachers can make students more responsible for their own learning through technology-enhanced self-assessments

Register here.

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