Who better to create a new classroom design than a student? Jessica Kim, a Moanalua senior, has always been interested in the relationship between education and design. She decided to harness her interests in a senior project that she titled, “Redesigning the Classroom.” To create an environment conducive to learning, she co-founded The Canvas, a students-for-students coworking space in Kalihi where she could design and construct her project.
Micah and mentor Paul Brighter display the cell phone charging unit.
Micah Bournes at Pearl City High tackled a timely issue for his senior project: the use of smartphones or cell phones in school settings. Recognizing the cell phone dependency of the digital generation, Micah decided to create a storage unit for cell phone charging that could be stored in any classroom with a sufficient number of stalls to accommodate everyone’s phones during the class without the danger of short circuiting in the outlets.
Leilani holding a prototype soap orb with mentor Robby Higa
Leilani Luis, a senior at Pearl City High, has always been interested in the effects of personal care products on our health and the environment. She decided to tackle a senior project that allowed her to investigate the chemicals in products, many of them being carcinogens and irritants that are absorbed by the skin in significant amounts. She ultimately created a product that she describes as an “entirely natural, cruelty-free and environmentally friendly hollow ball of glycerin soap filled with a liquid castile soap.” Continue reading
Persistence and resourcefulness are critical traits in conducting research and designing projects. Ethan Toriki, a junior at Leilehua, and his colleagues in the Leilehua High School Eco Team, aka as the Natural Resource Guides (NRG), learned this firsthand when they decided to tackle the staging of a Sustainable Sun Day seminar on solar photovoltaics. They invited local companies, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations to participate in an ambitious undertaking to bring Hawaii residents closer to a greener and sustainable energy future. They even planned for door prizes, distribution of solar chargers, and valuable coupons. Unfortunately, plans fell through because of a sparse response.
Her concern for issues of sustainability and endangered native Hawaiian plants led Kalyn Bowen of Pearl City High to conduct an investigation of the Wailua River Yellow Loosestrife. In her project, she emphasized the importance of having an accurate taxonomy of this species by noting the genetic differences within the same species.