PDC Areas of Specialization
The Professional Development Center at Hanahau‘oli offers programming that shares key elements of our school’s rich progressive education tradition.
Our areas of specialization include:
Founded in 1918, Hanahau‘oli School is a one-hundred-year-old testament to the American progressive education movement. Designed in collaboration with educators from The Parker School in Chicago, it started out as an experiment in John Dewey’s “controversial new philosophy of education” (Palmer, 1968, p. 1). Learn more about our progressive philosophy and pedagogy, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in progressive education professional development opportunities.
School Culture & Community
The school culture at Hanahau‘oli aims to model ideal democratic “community life” -- a socially just society on a small scale. To accomplish this goal, overall school structures (e.g. schedule, routines, groupings, etc.) are designed to cultivate and nurture a collaborative civic space and educators employ a social constructivist approach to teaching and learning. Learn more about our progressive approach to school culture and community, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in school culture and community professional development opportunities.
Child Development & Preserving Childhood
Hanahau‘oli School’s early childhood and elementary curriculum is centered around “happy work” and play. The focus at Hanahau‘oli is on stages not ages, honoring the developmental pace of children and the way they learn. Learn more about our views on educating children, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in professional development opportunities that focus on our progressive approach to education and childhood.
Inquiry-Based, Interdisciplinary, Integrated & Concept-Based Teaching and Learning
Teaching and learning at Hanahau‘oli starts with questions, from students, teachers, and the community at-large and is “hands on.” The interdisciplinary and integrated curriculum is anchored by overarching concepts (usually grounded in science or social studies) that spiral or progress, increasing in complexity from JK to 6th Grade. Learn more about our progressive approach to curriculum design, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in professional development opportunities that focus on the art of learning design.
The Arts, Music, Physical World Lab, World Language, Digital Literacy & Physical Education
Visual art, music, poetry, dance and movement, constructing and making things in a physical world lab, acquiring a world language, digital literacy, and physical education all make school meaningful at Hanahau‘oli. Learn more about how we educate the “whole child,” and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in professional development opportunities that focus on our progressive approach to the arts, music, physical world lab, world language, digital literacy, and physical education.
Multi-Age and Teaming Classroom Structures
Hanahau‘oli takes seriously the tenets of progressive education by creating a multiage learning environment (rather than grades i.e. first, second, third, etc.) in which students are taught by teams of teachers. This organization recognizes that children develop at different rates and levels of readiness, and focuses on children’s continuous growth as the objective. Learn more about the role of grouping -- both teachers and students -- in our progressive learning environments, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in multi-age and team teaching professional development opportunities.
Parent & Community Engagement
At Hanahau‘oli the family is the first and foremost educator of children; the school seeks to create a close connection between home, school, and community. The learning environment integrates school life with the home and world, and collaboratively engages parents and the community in the design of learning experiences for children. Learn more about how parents and community members are central to the schooling experience, and come to Hanahau‘oli School to engage in professional development about our progressive approach to parent and community engagement.
University of Hawaii, Manoa College of Education Partnership
Hanahau‘oli School and the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa College of Education are partners in developing a Professional Development School that emphasizes progressive, interdisciplinary, and inquiry approaches to learning. Learn more about the formal partnership between our organizations and our efforts to support Progressive Education in Hawai‘i.