Top Teachers

Saturday, February 6, 1999

Name: Dave Morishige
Age: 32
Position: Fifth-grade teacher at Heeia Elementary School
Education: University of Hawaii
Pastimes: Reading, going on trips

Busy but enjoying every minute

Dave Morishige can't sit still.

During the day, Morishige teaches fifth grade at Heeia Elementary School. At night, he takes classes to finish up his master's degree in elementary math at the University of Hawaii.

He also works every Friday night as a "barista," serving drinks behind the bar at Starbucks Coffee in Kaneohe, which allows him to meet a variety of interesting people. His busy schedule, which includes correcting papers and going to meetings, leaves little time to relax and watch television at home.

"My belief is that life is short," he said. "You have to enjoy yourself with what you're doing. So right now I'm really enjoying myself, and I have no regrets."

His family has been his biggest support. He especially credits his wife, Carlene, an optometrist. They are expecting their first baby boy next month.

"He's a wonderful male role model," Principal Susan Young said.

Morishige does an especially good job working with children who behave poorly in the classroom and need help in completing assignments.

"He has a way of working with them where things work. He has that knack," Young said.

He's also teased by fellow teachers about being a highly organized person, she said. "As principal, I can always count on him to be on time with things. We all can learn from him."

By Shirley Iida, Star-Bulletin

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