In May, HI FusionED concluded a 3-year project in partnership with Nanakuli Elementary School (NES). Led by Principal Lisa Higa, the project involved professional development and training to improve school culture and increase student success.
Each year, Principal Higa selects a personal/professional development concept book for faculty and staff to read over the summer. She then works with and coordinates activities with consultants who provide professional development and training based on the current book’s concepts that align with the school’s overall goals and objectives.
In 2015, HI FusionED was contracted to use Design Thinking and Engineering Design processes to help faculty and staff at NES understand and use these tools and strategies to move NES forward. In addition, HI FusionED aligned activities with other on-going trainings and approaches (e.g., Strength Finders, MindUp!/neuroplasticity and Growth Mindset).
Special thanks to our training team — Mr. Kapono Ciotti, Ms. Sandy Ahu and Ms. Sheri Fitzgerald — for their expertise and commitment. Thanks also to Waialae Elementary Public Charter School for sharing their best practices with us.
Results were exciting and NES continues on their journey towards student-centered learning that focuses on the whole child within a culture of respect inside and beyond the classroom.
We thank Principal Higa and the entire NES faculty and staff for giving us the opportunity to work with such a dedicated team who truly hold their students in their hearts and minds. Best wishes to the entire NES community for continued success!!!
For more information about sustained professional development training, please contact us at info[at]hifusioned.org or call (808) 988-1931.
The People of Color Conference is the flagship of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS). This conference was designed to support leadership, professional development and networking for all diversity advocates and allies and to support equity and justice in all independent schools.
The HI FusionED (HIFED) Design Thinking team was invited to the conference to present how Design Thinking can be a powerful tool that engages diverse groups in designing innovative solutions for complex challenges. The workshop provided tools that combined empathy and creativity in developing user-centric solutions to address school and classroom challenges. It focused on the theory behind a culturally responsive framework and included concrete take-homes for participants to begin innovation work at their schools.
The Conference was held in Indianapolis, IN, with participants from all across the nation – even from Hawaii! Most were Directors of Diversity (Equity and Justice); some were school administrators and yet others were classroom educators. All came with an open mind and willingness to work with us during this 8-hour session. Everyone was highly engaged throughout this active, collaborative workshop and most left with enthusiasm and great anticipation of implementing Design Thinking principles. The HIFED team will be following up with those who expressed a desire to carry on culturally-responsive Design Thinking protocols at their schools.
It was an incredible opportunity and learning experience for HIFED. Thanks to conference coordinators for the invitation and to the hard-working attendees. Hope to be there again next year!
Student leaders at Nanakuli High and Intermediate School took the reins and led their fellow officers in an immersive Design Thinking (DT) training session. The day was filled with happy discussions, music and dance all with the purpose of improving their learning environment through innovative strategies. It was a delightful experience for all the adults, watching how excited and productive students can be when engaged in relevant application.
The training outcome went beyond all expectations and the team is currently planning a student-led teacher training session. The primary goal would be to help teachers use DT concepts to better engage students in innovative learning strategies.7TH GRADE STUDENT COUNCIL IN DEEP DISCUSSIONIDEATE! FUN WITH BRAINSTORMING SESSIONDT ARTIFACTSAWESOME!
Recently, the HI FusionED Team has been busy helping Nanakuli Elementary and Nanakuli High and Intermediate School learn about the Design Thinking (DT) process and how to apply its principles to activate innovative change within their school cultures.
Two very different approaches were presented, challenging the Team to dig deep into their DT toolkits. At Nanakuli Elementary School, participants included faculty leadership. At Nanakuli High and Intermediate, student leaders were selected for initial training sessions. Both groups were highly engaged, developing customized Challenges and DT-generated projects to tackle.
These sessions have led to extended trainings for expanded groups within each school community and have positioned initial trainees as DT coaches at their respective schools. The HI FusionED Team looks forward to working with these forward-thinking schools.