Hawaiian Immersion students receive Tahitian and French lesson in preparation for hosting Tahiti guests

Molokai High School and Middle School students from the Hawaiian Language Immersion Program received a visit from two Tahitian guests on Monday. In the back row, far right and partially obscured is Mr. Gana Turina. Also presenting information on Tahitian language and culture was Mr. Sitake (fourth row, third from left wearing a name badge).

ʻO Hina i ka Malama News Release

Molokai High School’s 7th period Papa Mele class and ʻO Hina i ka Malama Hawaiian Immersion Program students were treated to a special lecture and question and answer session with LDS Church Elder Mr. Gana Turina on Monday.

Turina was an invited guest speaker to present French and Tahitian language lessons to Molokai students who will be hosting 38 homestay students from Raʻapoto High School, Tahiti from Oct. 28 to Nov. 4 on Molokai.

Their visit is helping to prepare the Molokai students with important cultural and language information to make the homestay experience a success for students, families and the community.

The combined 7-12 grade students welcomed Mr. Turina and his co-presenter, Mr. Sitake, with their “Kū i ka Pono” chant as an oli komo after immersion senior students Akeakamai Arakaki and Hāloa Hamakua opened with an oli kāhea on the visitors’ behalf. The students then presented lei lāʻī to the guests while singing a rousing rendition of “Kipa Mai” to welcome them.

Students asked the usual translation questions such as, “How do you ask if you’re hungry?” and “Are you tired?” Mr. Turina fielded those questions with ease and also provided tri-lingual lessons that covered French, Te Reo Maʻohi (Tahitian), and English glosses for common expressions.

Hawaiian speaking students in the room quickly shared Hawaiian equivalents and cognates. It was noted that many students were using smart phones and tablets to record their lecture notes; an indication of Molokai students’ adroit use of technology in the classroom. The lecture ended with the Papa Mele classes singing Manu Kapalulu, a song written by Queen Liliʻuokalani.

The Molokai students wish to thank Mr. Turina and Mr. Sitake for coming to the high school and sharing their time and knowledge of their Pacific islands home with us.


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