When you' re in Hawaii, you seem to be speaking Hawaiian. Thirty years ago,'olelo Hawai'i had only a few mother-tongue teachers, less than fifty of whom were orphans. If humans stop speaking speech from childbirth, they die. There are words in every tongue that cannot be interpreted, words that are specific to the cultural context in which they are used.
Much more than a sentence of words, a speech is the container that characterizes a person's thoughts, world-view. Olelo Hawai'i, the depository of over a thousand years of culture, was on the brink of disappearance. In 1822 in Hawaii, almost every missionary could literate and rewrite a Hawaiian script within thirty years.
The Hawaiians made rules, released papers, wrote compositions and learnt classes - all in'olelo Hawai'i. However, when the Westerners monopolised politics in Hawaii, the school moved to the new arrivals' schooling. Following the fall of the Hwaiian Empire in 1893, the new territory administration announced English as the teaching base. School children in Hawaii were penalized for using their mother tongues.
Marey Kawena Pukui, esteemed writer of the Hwaiian dictionary, remembered that she was knocked on the brow and refused holidays because she spoke HWAIANA. The Hawaiians have almost vanished in a family. In spite of the 60s and 1970s culture revival, which revived interest in all Maoli,'olelo Hawai'i languished further.
It has been reintegrated into the curricula of many archipelago colleges - as a non-native speaker. They made a condition when the college asked them to set up a graduate course in Hilo, teaching in their native Hawaii, not in Hawaii. Her programme started in 1982 - for the first case in almost 100 years'olelo Hawai'i was the media of education.
Wilson and Kamana's emphasis changed to early childhood parenting with the arrival of their firstborn. Aha Punana Leo, a non-profit organization dedicated to the care of the Hawaiian culture, especially through nursery schools, was founded by the family. Punana Leo, or "language nest", was opened in 1984 in Kaua'i.
In the area where the Bawaiian king once went, kids are learning to listen and chant in their own colour. On excursions to near situated calo lo'i (taro pavement) and fish ponds the young people implement Hawaiian values: er a' o ko koa honeyua a me na me kulohlohe (the nature is our classroom), and a' o ke kenki handau mu i cona multi (older kids should educate younger children).
Pre-school collects resources every year by organizing a Hawaiian musical event at which Kapolei Ki'ili collected her fatal car-stickers. When she became an nursery school nurse at Pa'ia Primary School, her history closed. Aha Punana Leo's founding fathers were committed to teaching their kids fluent Hawaiian beyond pre-school and to helping them learn the language again by the year twelf.
As a result, Kula Kaiapuni works as a single headmaster within a single headmaster at twenty-one universities, four of which are in Maui: Pa'ia Elementary, Princess Nahi'ena'ena Elementary in Lahaina, Kalama Intermediate in Makawao and King Kekaulike High school in Pukalani. The same topics as the English teachers are covered in class, but with a different outlook.
"Not only do our pupils learn facts," says Ki'ili. "They learn to think in Hispanic. "Halifax pupils have a tendency to represent Hawaii' ancient traditions such as esteem for the cupuna (elders), co-operation, modesty and responsibility for the environment. "You get a good feel for what to do in immersion," says Kaimana Brummel, one of Maui's first ever immigrant pupils, who is now managing directors of the Canoe Club of Hawaii.
There are so many mothers who want to enrol their kids in the Pa'ia Elementary course that they have demonstrated how to expand the school. Baccalaureate from Hawaii is not necessary for enrolment, but preferred are those from a family who speaks the native languages of Hawaii. "She says, "Because the pupils are proficient in the English course, we can really immerse ourselves in the syllabus.
Hawaii's moons calendars decorate the blanket, along with directions on which moons are best suited for growing, reaping, fishing or repairing net. In the bookshelves: 19th cent. journals from Hawaii, 1916 Abraham Fornander's traditional folk music from Hawaii and finally released from their dead. Your hemwaiian dictionary and Olelo No' eau (proverbs) are now syllabus-standard.
Although it honours the past, the ersion programme is by no means backwards. During the 90s, before the web became omnipresent in the classroom, Kula Kaiapuni pupils talked to other islanders on computer forums. Teachers showed classes for home study and the University of Hawaii worked with Apple to create hawai i-specific schoolware.
In spite of its value, Hawaii' s educational system has come a long way. The majority of the Hawaiians who speak their native tongue were sixty and older, and it is unlikely that they will ever go back to university to get certified. There was no precedent for the introduction of a second foreign tongue into the US state educational system when Punana Leo began in 1984.
In 1991, the Board of Trustees authorized Kula Kaiapuni up to the twelfth year. Nowadays, the Hwaiian diving community includes postgraduate training, on-line training and radio-medias. They have become role model for tribal linguistic training throughout the country. About 2,000 Kiki visit every year in Hawaii' immigrant camp. High-level degrees are always wasteful matters in Hawaii, but none compete with those who celebrate the hawaiian immersion sophomores.
It rained in front of the King Kekau-like sports hall. Inside, the faces of the children's families and boyfriends were filled with teardrops as the primary schoolchildren handed ho'okupu (ceremonial gifts) to their older schoolmates. Barefooted, clad in whites, the alumni were dancing and offering Hawaiian reflection before their instructors decorated them in kiwi (capes) that represented their classes and schools.
Its gymnasium athmosphere became almost awesome when the college kids began to recite the Kekaulike genealogical of Ali'i from the 18th c.. Once the story of the archipelago came alive, the place of the university' s scholars was disclosed - as the torch bearer of their own people. To Borden, who had been refused a Hawaiian education as a kid, the story of the Hawaiian marriage was an adventure beyond words when her grandchild sang her mo'okuauhau.