As part of a distance learning project, Design Technology and Engineering faculty created kits with supplies and equipment to allow students to have hands-on experiences at home. Kindergartners will be assembling mini Hawaiian sailing canoes out of wood cut on laser cutters at the Kosasa Community’s design lab. In a tie back to campus, the canoes are a scale replica of the voyaging canoe that Academy students have been building for an ongoing project.
The weeklong project with kindergarteners will teach them assembly skills, engineering concepts and about Hawaiian culture. They also will learn about sailing canoes from Punahou faculty – Kaniela Lyman-Mersereau ’05, Ka’ai McAfee-Torco, Adam Jenkins and Starr Johnson ’98 – who were Hōkūleʻa Worldwide Voyage crew members.
Taryn Loveman, director of design technology and engineering, says this is a great example of interdisciplinary projects that are continuing through distance learning, and also how the Kosasa Community’s design labs have helped faculty pivot from in-person learning to teaching online.
In this case, faculty were able to quickly produce materials for 150 mini canoes for the lesson. “In the past or in another situation, you may have to order different supplies or give up on something altogether,” Loveman said. “But we can, essentially instantly, produce what we need. We can dream it up, make it and go forward.”