On Monday I returned to school from a week away of learning and growing. It was truly a gift to visit Harvard and be able to interact with architects and educators from all over the world. The most encouraging thing I learned was that we are on track to creating an appropriate learning environmnet for the children of tomorrow. While today’s way of learning with mutiple stimuli and multiple tasks is not how you and I may have learned, it is the way in which our children function. There will always be a need for a space in our buildings for reflection and quiet. This is something the teachers and staff are working to insure takes place. Many school districts are challenged with funding, community issues, and the dilema of whether to build new or retrofit. The blessing of Pauahi’s gift to all of us is that we were given the once in a career chance to design together, build, and watch all of us grow into the 21st century learning world.
I took a quick visit on Friday and Saturday after the conference up to Maine to see cousins I haven’t seen in 35 years. Their dad was a KS graduate of the class of 1948. Both he and my father were beneficiaries of Pauahi’s gift as Pepe’ekeo youngsters who ventured to O’ahu for their education. While my dad eventually came back home after college, my uncle remined in Maine to raise his family after his college education. When we think about that today, it is not all that unusual for our KS graduates to go far away to college. However, in the 1940′s, that had to be a huge leap of faith. Interestingly my Maine cousins feel close as if we were raised together. This says much about the innate nature of our Hawaiian culture. I left Maine Sunday morning with a confimation that no matter how far away , and no matter how many years separate a family, reconnecting brings renewed joy and deepens our cultural connections. The photo in this post is of the first cherry blossom tress abloom in the Maine city of Portland.
Have a wonderful week!