COURTESY OF MOANALUA HIGH SCHOOL
Casey Schuler, left, and Sean Galera teach fifth-grader Erin Voss the finer points of camera angles. The Moanalua Elementary students work with the high school media students once a month.
An elementary school video club benefits from high school experts
For most, the dream of making it in show business is as farfetched as winning the lottery. However, for a few interested students at Moanalua High School, the school's Media and Technology Learning Center (MeneMAC) provides the opportunity to pursue an education in film and media studies.
Moanalua High School
Na Hoku O Moanalua
(The Stars of Moanalua)
Aric Bender and Joshua Fujino
2825 Ala Ilima St.
Silver and blue
This year, the Media Department, in collaboration with Moanalua Elementary School's Video Club, is opening its doors even wider through a new class, "MiniMAC."
Moanalua High's Kelly Calistro, MeneMAC instructional staff member, and Kimberly Sumida, Moanalua Elementary Video Club adviser, agreed that a film class for younger students would not only provide future generations with powerful new tools but also allow the older generation of students to develop their leadership skills.
Once a month, the nine members of the Moanalua Elementary Video Club commute to the high school campus' Student Center, home to the Media Learning Center. There, they gain hands-on experience working on different media skills, from setting up a camera to editing and producing a film under the instruction and guidance of their high school counterparts.
"It makes me happy to teach someone and it's cool when they learn something, like they actually get it," said senior Casey Schuler, the lead student coordinator of MiniMAC. He, along with seniors Sean Galera and Yvette Butac, have been planning and running the program for almost three months with the help of Calistro and other student volunteers.
Teaching the class, managing time and activities and planning the curriculum and assignments are just a few of the responsibilities placed in the hands of these students.
"That's when you know you're a successful teacher, when your students can do your job," Calistro said.
She plans to use this year as a pilot and continue to refine the program. Calistro said she always wanted to not only do something to give back to the community but get her students involved in community service as well. MiniMAC serves as a way for high school students to share their skills with others and earn required community service credit.
MeneMAC already has a history of service with the school, using its technology to shoot the school's morning bulletin daily and create and air a monthly newscast. Now, as MeneMAC opens up to a larger demographic of filmmakers, the high school students have become media ambassadors to the elementary students.
"Working with the high school students was scary at first because I didn't know how they would treat us," said fifth grader Erin Voss, "but they were friendly and patient."
Many of the elementary students, like Voss, were a little reserved at their first meeting with the high school students, but soon warmed up to the class. It is this eagerness to learn that allows the program to be successful and beneficial to all participants.
"This MiniMAC Program is a great way to expose younger students to the opportunities that would otherwise be only offered to high school students," Calistro said.
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Marching band brings their aloha to Japan
The students were among bands from across the globe in the Midosuji Parade
Some 192 Moanalua High School marching band students participated in the Oct. 8 Midosuji Parade, a two-mile parade through Midosuji Boulevard in Osaka, Japan, during the high school's fall recess from Sept. 29 to Oct. 9.
The band was "first rate" in their performance during the parade.
"It was the best they've ever marched," Moanalua music director Elden Seta said.
The marching band was invited to go to Japan based on its past record and accomplishments. The band's performance needed to be based on the theme "Bring the World Together," so Seta decided to relate its performance to international culture by wearing leis and hakus during the parade.
"The music was harder than the other years, but the movements were fun," freshman Chelsea Isa said.
"It was pretty strong because it wasn't as long as the other parades, so we were able to focus more," said sophomore Loreto Coloma.
In addition to marching bands from all over the world, there were also Japanese festival groups, including a folk dance group and children's mikoshi (portable shrines). Floats, music, announcement cars and baton twirlers all participated.
"I liked the preschool marching band! They were so cute!" senior and color guard member Rachel Spain said.
COURTESY OF MOANALUA HIGH SCHOOL
Moanalua High School's marching band performed Oct. 8 in the Midosuji Parade down Midosuji Boulevard in Osaka, Japan. Music director Elden Sata called the performance "the best they've ever marched."
The hardest part of organizing the trip was "finding the right and correct people to do the correct jobs," Seta said. With such a large group of people -- about 280 total, including parents and chaperones -- "moving everyone around was so difficult because Japan is so small."
To attend the Japan trip, students had to pay $2,600, which included air fare, hotel and transportation. There were some problems with passports, though, because the Bureau of Consular Affairs gives passports only to people who are of U.S. citizenship, and "in Hawaii, we have so many different students with different national(ities), such as Korean national(s)," Seta said. Students had to make sure they had their passports in time so they could attend the trip.
While in Japan, the marching band took tours of the Hiroshima Museum, Nara City and Mount Fuji. Students visited temples and shrines on the Nara City tour.
"One of the coolest things I saw during the Nara City tour was a huge Buddha," clarinet player and senior Pualani Kahalepuna said.
The students also visited Tokyo Disneyland, Kamakura, Yokohama and Kyoto, where Rachel Spain was filmed as part of a TV show. In Yokohama, senior Darin Komiyama saw another TV show being filmed.
This trip allowed students to experience the culture of Japan and discover new things about themselves, as well.
The Moanalua High marching band has been to two other foreign countries -- Australia and England. It also went to California for the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade, and to Florida for the Orange Bowl.
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"What did you do after the Oct. 15 earthquakes?"
"My mom made me clean! I had to fold everyone's clothes and then I cleaned the kitchen."
"It was my birthday! I had noodles in the dark."
"I saw this piece of metal lying in the middle of the road, so I picked it up and burned my finger!"
"We brought out our lantern and we were camping inside our house."
"After the earthquake, I went on my roof and I just sat there."
"I played in the rain. I was sword fighting with sticks."