In my World Schooling Round 1 blog, I explained what world schooling is and our adventures in New Zealand.  In Round 2 , I discussed Germany.  In Round 3, I discussed England.  Well, Round 4 is Hawaii and specifically the island of Maui.  I know that Hawaii is not technically an international trip. However, due to the cultural uniqueness from the mainland US, it is 3,814 miles from our house, and it has a foreign language (Hawaiian), I am counting it as world schooling.

Hawaii is far from home but we have the privilege of having family living there.  My husband’s Aunt lives on the island of Maui on the side of Haleakala.  She has been living in the Hawaiian islands for almost 50 years.  Thus, we make a point to go and visit periodically.  We would love to visit more often.  This was our son’s second time visiting.  So for us, Maui is a great cultural experience and a time to be with family.  My husband’s parents joined us for part of our stay too.  Thus, my son gets time with his grandparents and his great Aunt.

Besides lots of beaches, here is what we experienced during this trip to Maui:

  • Kula
  • Malolo Protea Farms
  • Ali’i Kula Lavender
  • Polipoli Spring State Recreation Area
  • Emmanuel Lutheran Church
  • The Road to Hana (64 miles of winding roads with one lane bridges and one lane road sections)
  • Waikamoi Ridge
  • Pua’a Ka’a State Wayside Park
  • Pua’a Ka’a Falls
  • Hanawai Falls
  • Hana Lava Tube
  • Wai’anapanapa State Park
  • Fagan’s Cross
  • Hana Bay
  • Entabeni Cottage & Gardens
  • Koki Beach Park
  • Wailua Falls
  • Kipahulu of Haleakala National Park which holds ‘Ohe’o Gulch, Pipiwai Trail, and Waimoku Falls
  • Palapala Ho’omau Church and Charles Lindbergh’s grave
  • St. Joseph’s Church
  • Kaupo
  • Summit Visitor Center and Crater of Haleakala National Park
  • Sugar Museum
  • Kula Botanical Garden
  • Maui Brewing Company Tour
  • Pacific Whale Foundation whale watching tour
  • Wa’alaea Harbor

A fun part of visiting Hawaii is that although English is the language you will hear and see Hawaiian phrases.  The native language has influenced many of the names of the people, streets, and towns too.  Thanks to my son’s great Aunt, our son has been exposed to the Hawaiian language through many books she has sent us as well as through some Hawaiian music.  The Hawaiian alphabet only has 13 letters: a, e, i, o, u, h, k, l ,m, n, p, w(v) and the ‘okina or glottal stop.  Thus, we find it a fun language when we are there.

Here are a few of the phrases we know:

  • Aloha – hello and goodbye
  • Honu – turtle
  • Humuhumunukunukuapua’a – the state fish, a type of triggerfish (just fun to say)
  • Kane – male, men and seen on boys bathroom signs
  • Wahine – female, women and seen on girls bathroom signs
  • Kapu – forbidden, keep off, no trespassing
  • Keiki – child, children
  • Lei – necklaces of flowers, leaves, nuts, or shells
  • Mahalo – thank you
  • Malama ‘Aina – respect the plant and animals (from the junior ranger program)
  • Haleakala – house of the sun (name of the volcano)
  • Haole – foreigner or Pidgin slang for white person
  • Mele Kalikimaka – Merry Christmas
  • Pau – finished, all done
  • Pono – proper, fair

Here are some of the Hawaiian Books that our son has read:

  • The Three Little Hawaiian Pigs and the Magic Shark
  • Winter is for Whales: A Book of Hawaiian Seasons
  • Mo’o’s Colors
  • Limu the Blue Turtle and His Hawaiian Garden
  • Goodnight Hawaiian Moon
  • This is my Piko
  • Too Many Mangoes: A Story About Sharing
  • Old Makana Had a Taro Farm
  • Tick-Tock Sharks

Just like international trips, even domestic trips allow our son to experience some frustrations: long travel times, flight delays, time change adjustment, Hawaiian agriculture inspections, and lack of free wifi everywhere.  Travel to Hawaii was a great way to physically experience and learn about: time changes, climate, continents, geography, Hawaiian culture, WWII history, the life of volcanoes, geology, waves, trade winds, landslides, solar power, accents, customs, and much more.  

We truly believe travel is a great educational tool.   Remember, travel could be local, regional, your own country, or foreign countries.  If you can not physically leave, please consider traveling via “arm chair” with the use of books, videos, and computers.  Traveling is a great educational experience and exposure to the world is so important for our children.  Now, be inspired and go explore!