Friday, January 22, 2016

I.S. Artists Win Scholastic Regional Art Awards

Island School congratulates its two winners in the Hawai'i Regional Scholastic Art Awards. Seventh grade student Amber Asuncion and eighth grade student June Hsu both won “gold key awards,” Scholastic's most prestigious award.

Regional winners of gold key awards will have their work considered for the Scholastic National Awards in New York City later this year. Amber's photograph and June's painting will be part of the 53rd Annual Hawai'i Regional Scholastic Art Awards Exhibition at the Hawai'i State Art Museum, from February 19th through April 15th. June and Amber will be honored at the Scholastic Awards Ceremony at HiSAM on Saturday, February 20th.

The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards are the longest running, most prestigious competition in the United States. Created in 1923 by Maurice R. "Robbie" Robinson, founder of the Scholastic Corporation. it has an impressive legacy and a noteworthy roster of past winners including Andy Warhol, Frances Farmer, Sylvia Plath, Truman Capote, Richard Avedon, and Joyce Carol Oates, among many others.

Here are their award-winning works:

Photo by Amber Asuncion

June Hsu's painting

Free STEM Program for HS Junior Women at Harvey Mudd

For more information, click here:

Alaka‘i Chorus Students Win "Name That Tune" Contest

Members of the Alaka'i Chorus have been practicing their sightsinging skills in preparation for a sightsinging evaluation they will be given at the 2016 Na Leo Hou Hawai'i All-State Choral Festival on O'ahu. 

Sight singing is the ability to read and sing music at first sight, without any preparation or previous knowledge of what the melodies may sound like. Festival organizers send Mr. Steinbacher weekly sightsinging selections and students practice singing them on the spot. 

This week's selection included a “Name That Tune” contest, where two of the three samples were based on famous melodies. The challenge was put to the 320 singers from across O‘ahu, Kaua‘i, and the Big Island who will be attending the festival to see if they could “name the tune” of these two samples. The first student to correctly identify the melodies by emailing their titles and composers to the festival organizers would win a prize for their school upon arriving at the festival. Saige Akana '16, correctly identified the title and composer of one piece and the composer of the second, but with a slight error in its title. Allison Summerhays '17, and Lia Yamasato '17, however, were the first Hawai'i students to correctly identify the pieces as Symphony No. 9 in E minor by Antonin Dvorak and “Morning Mood” from Peer Gynt, Opus 23 by Edvard Grieg, winning the contest for the Alaka'i Chorus! 

The chorus will collect its prize while attending the festival February 11-13 on O'ahu. Congratulations Saige, Allison, and Lia!

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Sign Up for Conferences - grades 6-12 - Feb. 5th

Parents of students in middle and high school are encouraged to sign up for Student/Parent/Teacher conferences, scheduled for February 5th. It's easy to sign up online. Just visit this page:

Each conference is approximately ten minutes. This is an excellent opportunity for you to get a quick overview of your sons' and daughters' strengths and weaknesses in each subject. Bring in your questions.

If you'd rather sign up in the Office, stop by and speak to one of the Office Staff.

Alexa Lauryn Makes Us Proud at Regional Spelling Bee

Alexa and her parents pose after the competition.
The winner of our school spelling be, 7th grader, Alexa Lauryn, and 6th grade runner up, Isaac Plascencia, competed against Kaua'i middle & elementary students at Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School on Wednesday, January 20th. Alexa came in third place! Isaac was eliminated in round five (out of nine), on the word, nightingale.

Alexa described the competition as "fun." In the semi final round, she was tripped up on the word, quiche, getting mixed up between the German and the French root spellings. "It felt a little funny being the last girl in the running, and the only 7th grader," she said (the others were 8th grade boys).

Alexa is a runner up to the runner up, which means she will travel to the State Spelling Bee if one of the two winners cannot make the competition.

Ms. Elizabeth, who coordinates our participation in the Spelling Bee, received compliments from several teachers and principals about our students. They were impressed with our students' stage presence, articulation and confidence!

Mahalo to Ms. Elizabeth, Bruce Hogue and Tuba Abbassi, who coached our students.

Volunteers Needed at Swim Meet January 23rd

The Athletic Department is in need of 13 more volunteers to time for this Saturday's KIF Swim Meet, January 23rd at the YMCA swimming pool. Timers are needed to report to Jen Pomroy at 1:20 p.m with the meet starting at 2:00 p.m. The meet should run approximately 2 1/2 hours long. No experience needed! If you are able to assist as a timer please email Jen at Your assistance is appreciated and sandwiches will be provided. Adult volunteers please.

Birthday Ho‘okupu Planned for Jan. 29th

Students will gather in front of the Wilcox Gymnasium for our Birthday Assembly on Friday, January 29 at 8:15 a.m. After the kani ka pu (blowing of the conch) and the oli performed by dancers from Na Pua O Maile (our halau), students will file into the gym, as drummers from Aloha Africa announce the beginning of the assembly, which will begin at 8:30.

Parents, relations, friends and alumni are all invited to attend this 45 minute presentation, which will feature a message from our Head of School, Shannon Graves, and our student leaders will announce their ho‘okupu projects. These projects will take place directly following the birthday treats that will be distributed by homeroom teachers.

Here are the ho‘okupu projects:

  • Freshmen: maintaining the grounds and planting orchids in and around the temples at Lawai International Center
  • Sophomores: property beautification and maintenance at Hanchett Ranch in Moloa‘a
  • Juniors:  clearing land for gardening, planting indigenous plants, and doing repairs and maintenance to the fence line at Makanalani Farm, a non-profit farm near Kilauea
  • 6th grade: trash pick-up on the beach, just south of Kitchen's near the Kaua‘i Beach Resort
  • 7th grade: clearing invasive species at Niumalu with Malama Huleia
  • 8th grade: helping the Coast Guard with a special project
  • PK-2: gardening at the community garden here on campus
  • K & 3: reading to the elderly at the Regency at Pua Kea
  • 4 & 5: painting and remodeling the RSpot shed behind Purdy Hall
In addition, the ISAA has a service project planned at Wailua Beach (contact Peter King for more information - The ISAA has also challenged Island School alumni, wherever they live, to plan and carry out a service project in their area in honor of Island School's 39th birthday. (Read more about this on our blog:

Alumni Ho‘okupu in honor of our Birthday - January 29th

Alumni who are on-island, are invited to join Peter King and colleague, geologist Chuck Blay, Ph.D. for a community service project on January 29th at Wailua Beach. They have been measuring the beach at Wailua in order to establish a baseline and quantify beach erosion. Understanding the beach/sand dynamics at Wailua is important, especially as development of Coco Palms Resort gets underway. Not only is this a terrific community service opportunity, but participants will learn how to conduct a beach survey. Those who choose to, can continue to volunteer monthly with Chuck and Peter.

A general beach clean-up will also take place. Bring sunscreen and gloves (for litter pick-up). Please RSVP to Peter King at if you plan on participating.

This was sent out to alumni who would like to organize their own project. Spread the word!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Science Olympiad Teams to Compete at States

Island School was well represented at the Kaua'i District Science Olympiad Tournament on Monday at Kaua‘i Community College.  

The Middle School teams won all but one event and they took 1st place and 2nd place overall. The highlights included a rocket that launched an egg into the air and delivered it safely to the earth after a 12 second flight. They also had a balsa wood bridge that only weighed 13.8 g and it held 12.4 Kg of sand!  AMAZING. These Olympiad students won events ranging from anatomy to dynamic planet, and one group even made ice cream!

The entire Middle School team won the spirit award. This is a reflection of good sportsmanship and being well prepared. Supervisors and coaches from other teams noticed that students from Island School were complimenting other teams, being grateful, and offering equipment to other teams who forgot some required supplies.

The High School team did well too. They won 2nd place overall. This team built an efficient windmill and designed an electric car with a unique braking system that travels quickly and stops close to a target point. These students even programmed a video game on the spot. They did well in anatomy, hydrogeology, and chemistry lab.  

Both the Middle and the High School teams will represent Kaua'i at the State tournament Saturday, March 5th on O'ahu. 

Luke Sullivan '20, & Cameron Hubler '21, did the Scrambler event. They built a car that was activated by a falling mass to travel a given distance. The car was carrying an egg and it had to stop before a barrier so the egg didn't break. 

6th graders, Michael Perales & Avinash Srikanth launched a rocket that stayed in the air for 12 seconds and delivered an egg to the earth safely. 

Elementary Clubs Going Into Second Week

Gardening Club got off to a great start last week. they're working on re-planting some of the vegetable boxes on the back playground.

The other clubs include: Drawing, Outdoor Games, Legos and Princess Club, Science, Board Games, Arts & Crafts and RSpot.

Interact Club Pick Up Trash With Po‘ipu Rotary

Rotary Club of Po‘ipu Beach featured our Interact Club service project in their recent newsletter:
The highway between Eleele and Lawai is much cleaner today thanks to the hard work of Po‘ipu Rotarians and Island School Interacters. Volunteers picked up trash from 4.5 miles of Highway 50 as part of our Adopt-A-Highway project. It was great to see all the energy of the Island School students that used this project as part of their fundraising efforts.
Nice work, Interact Club. Mahalo David Reynolds, adviser.

Photos courtesy of Po‘ipu Rotary

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Upcoming Spring Sports Meetings

  • Track and Field meeting with Coach Eric Wortmann will be on Thursday Jan. 21st on the Wilcox Gym Lanai during lunch
  • Golf  meeting with Coaches Sam Pratt and Alan King will be on Thursday Jan. 28th on the Wilcox Gym Lanai during lunch
  • Volleyball meeting with Coach Kaipo for both the JV and Varsity teams will be on Thursday Feb. 4th on the Wilcox Gym Lanai during Lunch

Please contact the Athletic Department for additional information.

Seminar For Aspiring College Athletes

Athletic Quest provides seminars for high school students interested in learning more about college scholarships in athletics. The seminar is hosted by former and current college athletics coaches who will provide helpful information about the whole process of recruiting. Two meetings are scheduled:
  • Monday, January 25 at Kaua‘i HS
  • Wednesday, January 27 at Kapa‘a HSB
Both are at 7:00 p.m. Students from Waimea and Island School are encouraged to attend.

Voyager Athletics

Our Voyager Boys won 2- 0 over Kauai‘ High on Saturday!

Josh Miller '16,  scored the first goal about 25 minutes into the first half. Ziko Quintana '16, attempted a shot at the net that the Kaua‘i High goalie saved and Josh knocked the rebounded ball into the net!

The entire team battled throughout the the game and finally got another shot at the net when Brandon Beydoun '18, put a shot in from Alae Miike '19. Andy Anderton '17, played goal keeper for about 10 minutes when Andres Elzaurdia '16, was being checked over as a result of a collision on the field and he went on to make one of the rare saves of the game. Andres returned to action for the balance of the game.

This win put the team at 2 wins, 2 losses, and a tie.

This week's games will be:
Wednesday, January 19, Waimea @ Vidinha
     Girls at 5pm; Boys at 7pm

Saturday, Jan. 23, Kapa'a @ IS
     Girls at 10am; Boys at 12pm

The next KIF Wrestling Tournament will be Waimea on Sat, January 23, at 10 a.m.
The next qualifying meet will be at the YMCA pool, this Saturday, Jan. 23,  at 2:00 p.m. Timers are needed and should to report to Jen at 1:20 p.m. The meet should run approximately 2 1/2 hours long. No experience needed!

If you are able to assist as a timer please email Jen at Your assistance is appreciated and sandwiches will be provided. Adult volunteers please.
Bino Fitzgerald is our new tennis coach! Pracitices are on Wednesdays and Thursdays at 3:00 p.m. at the KCC tennis courts. Please contact Kaipo or Jen for more information. 

Middle School Basketball
Our middle school boys basketball teams will play this Tuesday, January 19, at the Island School Gym
  • The Blue Team plays Hanakila at 6:00 p.m.
  • The Gold Team plays Lihu‘e A at  7:00 p.m.

On Saturday, January 23, the games are at the Kalaheo Gym:
  • The Gold Team plays Super Sonics at 10:00 a.m.
  • The Blue Team plays Hanamaulu Hawks at 11:00 a.m.

Pre-College Scholarship for Indigenous Jr/Seniors

The INSPIRE Pre-College Program is a full scholarship open to Native Hawaiian, American Indian, and Alaska Native rising junior and senior high school students, including 2016 anticipated graduates, who want to spend 3-weeks on the George Washington University (GW) campus to learn about  intergovernmental relations between tribal governments and the federal government. The program is a full-day experiential undergraduate course,Native Politics and the American Political System, taught by GW faculty, which will offer opportunities for students to meet and interview influential Native advocates who work in Washington, D.C.

As an added bonus, INSPIRE students live on campus and participate in recreational programs with the community of high school students enrolled inGW Pre-College programs.

INSPIRE scholarships are awarded to students based on evidence of academic ability, leadership potential, and an interest in public service. Students from all tribes and from every part of the United States are welcome to apply.

There is no application fee. The INSPIRE Pre-College Program is spearheaded by the Native American Political Leadership Program (NAPLP) at (GW) and made possible by a generous contribution from AT&T.
What does the INSPIRE scholarship cover?
  • One course in Native Politics and the American Political System (3 undergraduate credit hours)
  • Room and board at GW
  • Airfare to and from Washington, D.C. (one round-trip ticket)
  • All required textbooks
  • Required local travel related to the course             
NOTE: While credit bearing courses are typically transferable to other institutions, please check specific university policies.

How to apply?
We encourage you to submit your application through our online system. The following list contains required supporting documents that may be submitted seperately:
  1. 350 Word Essay
  2. High School Transcript
  3. Proof of Ancestry
  4. Recommendation form completed by a teacher or counselor
All application materials must be received by March 1, 2016. We offer a wide variety of convenient ways for you to submit the required documents. You may submit the required documents by:
  • Attaching the documents to the online application; or
  • Emailing digital copies to; or
  • Faxing copies to 202-994-8471; or
  • Mailing copies to The Native American Political Leadership Program at the George Washington University, Attn: The INSPIRE Pre-College Program, 1922 F Street NW Suite 401, Washington, DC 20052.

Kindergartners Ride Grove Farm Train

The kindergarten class visited the Grove Farm Museum on Thursday for a short ride on the historic train.

Student Government Planning HS Dance

The dance is free for Island School students and $15 for their guests.

To download the Permission Form, right-click and save on your computer.