Monday message 01.30.2023

image of blue sky and stars

Aloha mai kakou to the good people in the learning community of Alaka’i O Kaua’i Charter School and hope this message finds you well as we approach the conclusion of the month of January.

Mahalo for support of our unique charter school and this week we are excited to share a follow-up message about a project based learning activity from the 2021-2022 school year. Some of you may recall that we started last school year with a school wide project based learning activity entitled “Dream Up To Space”. One of the amazing outcomes of this project was the opportunity that one of the activities was chosen to go to the International Space Station to have the astronauts perform the experiment. Team Ko was chosen from all of the projects in the school. They were curious about how sugar cane would grow in zero gravity.

Fast forward to 2022-2023 and after lengthy delays and challenges Team Ko sent their experiment to Cape Canaveral in Florida and kept a control set here on beautiful Kaua’i. Team Ko featuring Omar, Persais, and Hudson also traveled to Florida and presented their work at the Kennedy Space Station and just missed watching a live launch of the rocket carrying the payload that included their experiment.

Last week we did received the experiment that was returned from the International Space Station. Dr. Dustin Wolkis from the National Tropical Botanical Garden had been kind enough to keep the control group on the island in his lab and those samples were brought to campus for comparison.

AOK seed experiment

As you can see from this week’s photos, both the seeds from outer space and those here on Kaua’i were compared to each other in our Learning Commons. Omar, Persais, and Hudson were able to determine that there was seed germination from the samples on Kaua’i but there was no growth from the seeds that were returned from the International Space Station. They have concluded that zero gravity did impact their ko seeds from their careful and deliberate comparisons.

Ho’omaika’i Team Ko and we are immensely proud of your diligence, hard work, vision, and patience in the 14 months of efforts in seeing this project based learning activity to conclusion. You are all shining examples of the bright future ahead on our planet as our keiki mature into adults in the coming years.

AOK seed experiment 2

We also wish to publicly acknowledge this people who volunteered their time to work directly with Team Ko in this educational journey. Dr. Pamela worked on campus with Team Ko until last May and then handed support to Kumu Nate here at the school. Dr. Dustin Wolkis from the National Tropical Botanical Garden did an outstanding job of mentoring, teaching, and guiding our young learners through the process.

Alaka’i O Kaua’i Charter School also wishes to express our appreciation to our learning community for your generous financial support of Team Ko to help subsidize their travel back and forth to Florida. The Team Ko Store that was open on Friday morning on campus proved to be a fundraiser and “funraiser” on campus and was made possible by your generosity.

Mahalo for your support of the fastest improving charter school in the state of Hawai’i and malama pono.

DJ Adams – Po’o Kumu (Director), Alaka’i O Kaua’i Charter School, Koloa, Hawai’i

“Ua ola no i ka pane a ke aloha.” There is life in a kindly reply.

Alakai O Kauai campus and learners

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