Top Teachers




Saturday, October 11, 1997

Name: Holly Honbo
Position: Spanish teacher, Kaimuki High
Education: Punahou, UH School of Education, New York University
Pastimes: Hula

Honbo's classes muy bien

Holly Honbo has earned a reputation at Kaimuki High School.

The Spanish-teaching, hula-dancing teacher is stirring up students at the school. They're beating down her classroom door trying to get in. After just one year of teaching, student demand for her Spanish classes has soared, spurring school administrators to double the number of Spanish classes from two to four. Administrators credit her "exuberant teaching style," for the growing interest.

"She has done so much to enrich the lives of students and fellow teachers," said Kaimuki High School Vice Principal Helen Wong. "Whatever the task, she immerses herself in it and she inspires her students to do likewise."

Honbo is active with faculty organizations. She is working with ninth-grade teachers to develop strategies to improve freshmen success rates. "We just wanted to raise the bar," she said.

Honbo said they found incoming students were having difficulty adjusting from intermediate to high school.

They were losing focus. So she and a group of teachers developed portfolios on each ninth-grader to monitor their progress.

Honbo was also instrumental in organizing a student musical group, aiming to "showcase their talents and raise their self-esteem."

The group went on to take top honors at high school competitions throughout the state.



Veronica Fajardo, Star-Bulletin




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