Relationship building with students is a huge “this we believe” in middle school philosophy, but what we are saying is that Hawaiian ways of creating relationships is different in that it privileges Hawaiian thinking and aligns with Na Hopena Aʻo
What makes these activities more focused on the outcomes of a strengthened sense of belonging, responsibility, excellence, aloha, total well being and Hawaiʻi is that we focus on strengths-based – especially the strengths they bring from home and share with us. We also choose activities that see ʻāina (land and sea) as community, as identity, as sense of belonging, as kuleana, and as part of our well-being for living in Hawaiʻi. Finally, we see ʻohana (in the large definition) as part of students’ superpowers and their sense of hā. Attaching our slides and the directions for the activities we did with participants. The Na Hopena Aʻo link above holds the video that is on the slides.
Update: the thing with using student teachers is that some veteran teachers, even our own mentors, feel like these are just students, and therefore, what do they have to offer? But I have larger plans for these student teachers and I loop up with them to set these plans in motion. My intention is to create new teachers that are already on their way to being teacher leaders, so the more I can push them forward (see my blog post on throwing the babies out), the stronger our teacher work force will be. They hold mana, just that not everyone recognizes it. Not a problem. But don’t act shocked when they are ready to take over your department.