Here’s a look at the various ways learning took place across campus, with safety and health protocols in place for the 2020 – 2021 school year.
Academy Guitar Students Perform Original Song
Led by Academy music faculty Darin Au, the second-year Classic Guitar Ensemble I class performed “A Midnight Drink of Water.” To create this original song, the class incorporated lessons from the year, including chord theory, melodic construction and improvisation.
Clothing Drive Supports Women in the Workplace
The student-led organization and Academy club, WeGo!, donated over 250 pounds of clothing they collected during a drive at Punahou. Items included business attire for YWCA’s “Dress for Success,” a program that provides job support to women. “Their goals align with WeGo!’s mission to empower women and enable them to be the best version of themselves,” said Sonya ’24, club co-leader.
Punahou Esports Team
Congratulations to the Punahou Green esports team for taking home the Hawaii High School Athletics Association (HHSAA) trophy for their performance on League of Legends this year. The trophy is on display in the Athletics Department. The team is comprised of recent graduates from the Class of 2021: Matthew Yi, Carter Takemoto, Aaron Takemoto, Jake Horiuchi, Reagan Kaminaka and Andrew Yu.
Author Inspires Second Graders with Book Series
Sheila Worley’s second graders were thrilled by a surprise Zoom call with children’s author Kallie George. “The Heartwood Hotel” book series inspired children to show respect to teachers and friends and protect one another, especially during the pandemic. Students enjoyed asking the author questions on how she created the series. “It means so much to me that the students found so much love in Heartwood,” said George. “This is exactly why I wrote these books.”
Did you know kites were invented in Ancient China? Sixth graders learned this lesson during their study of Ancient China, coupled with a design and building course, which culminated with testing out their kites on a gusty day.
Japanese Graduation Ceremony
Japanese language faculty recently celebrated 77 Academy students for their successful completion of the Japanese language program during a virtual graduation celebration, which included guest speaker Naomi Hirano-Omizo, a former longtime teacher with the program
Making a Difference
Thanks to the Punahou Sustainability Club, which includes Anna Lerner ’22 and faculty advisor Ian Earle ’89, Gov. Ige signed a proclamation designating April 2021 as Tree Awareness Month.
Outdoor Band Practice
Academy music faculty Grant King and Galu Aga led the Wind Ensemble in an outdoor rehearsal.
Volunteering in the Community
Meanwhile, off campus, seniors Patrick, Ryder, Siupeli and Kevin have been working twice a week at Hawaii Foodbank near the airport for their Capstone community service course. “I’m so proud of these senior students who haven’t missed a day and work purposefully and joyfully,” said Academy Social Studies faculty member Yunus Peer.
Best Foot Forward
Connor ’25, an eighth grader, designed and painted these sneakers for a class project in English, then gave them to his teacher, Sarah Man. Connor also has a small business doing sneaker art in his free time.
Middle School Orchestra
Middle school orchestra students have been coming together to practice inside the Bishop Learning Center.
Cafeteria Bakery Launches With Sweet Treats
Punahou recently launched a Cafeteria Bakery – open on Wednesdays to faculty and staff – with a wide array of homemade baked goods, including cornbread, chocolate cake, caramel cuts, haupia bread pudding, scones, lemon bars, cookies, banana bread and several gluten-free options.
“The bakery was launched after spring break for fun, to break the monotony of what the cafeteria does on a daily basis and to give something different to the faculty and staff to look forward to,” Punahou Food Services Director Marcia Wright said. “It has been wonderful so far and we are selling out of most everything.”
Although the bakery is scheduled to end on May 19, Wright says it may reopen in the fall.
Academy Chemistry Lab
Students used a funnel and filter to figure out what chemical substance they were investigating during the “Unknown Solids” chemistry lesson with faculty member Paraluman Stice-Durkin.
A Virtual Visit Abroad
To nurture empathy and provide historical background for the novel “Refugee” by Alan Gratz, seventh grade students used VR to get to know a Syrian refugee in the Zaatari Refugee Camp in Jordan. This was a joint effort between their English teacher and Punahou’s Wo International Center.
Working in the Wood Shop
Sixth grade design technology students used their wood shop skills to create desk separators for the sixth and seven grade teams. The wooden boards are designed to go on the floor and keep rolling desks from getting too close in order to practice social distancing.
Connecting with Kūpuna
Seniors Tori Takai, Ali Shiraishi and Makenna Hohmann lead kūpuna at Kaiser in a virtual chair yoga session as part of their Capstone course community service.
Fun with Clay
Fourth grade students used the coil technique to create clay bowls in art class, which will later be fired and glazed for students to take home.
Children’s Author Meets With Kindergartners
Kindergartners were treated to an online guest visit by Tom Lichtenheld, the author and illustrator of the children’s book “Duck! Rabbit!” and others. “We had an absolute blast with him, laughing, sharing stories, learning how to draw and watching him draw,” said Punahou’s K – 1 Librarian Marci Johnstone ’87. Prior to meeting Lichtenheld, children made art inspired by his book “Friendshape.”
The Show Goes On
“Students are having a blast rehearsing and performing socially distanced plays in Dillingham Theatre Workshop,” said Director of Theatre Melinda Moore, such as “this very funny, all-female cast performing Durang’s play, ‘Vanya, Sonia Masha and Spike.'”
Music Moves Outdoors
Michael Lippert’s Academy Chorus class has taken place outdoors recently. “While no photo can capture the feeling of making music, we can capture this place in time, when our faculty are doing everything they can to ensure that their students continue to fulfill the aims of a Punahou education and make their voices heard,” said Chrisann Sills, administrative assistant for the Music Department.