Crossing Cultures

Kauaʻi Community College will adapt the Kauhale concept of teaching and mentoring across our campus while renovating existing areas for enhanced teaching and learning. The Kauhale originated in ancient Hawaiian residential compounds, which were organized around hale dedicated to specific functions. Rather than separate the community into individual nuclear families, each in its own house, the extended family all used a common hale as functional gathering places for common activities, resulting in the formation of community.

Kauhale connects existing programs while enabling us to improve crosscultural and multi-disciplinary learning and working environments. Hawaiian learning involves both the body and the mind as instruments of knowing. Knowledge, according to Native Hawaiian learning styles and other activities, is a balance grounded in experience such as hearing, touching, sensing, feeling, doing, thinking, listening, learning and reasoning. Therefore, where and how you teach and mentor must be included in the educational approach to include a sense of belonging and purpose to ensure success. As part of this focus we are renovating existing Engineering and Hawaiian Studies facilities, and building a teaching canoe (waʻa) and hale waʻa on campus.

Kauaʻi CC is also improving curriculum to include new STEM-oriented programs in PreEngineering, Digital Media and Hawaiian Language, Hands on learning of Polynesian canoes and voyaging, Hula and Language Arts, and Mālama ‘Āina. This grant also funds a pilot project for Early College Math as well as a mobile STEM teaching laboratory called “CogsGo!.”