July 01, 2020

An online workshop through the Hanahau'oli School Professional Development Center


Dates: July 1, 2, 8 & 15

Time: 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM Hawaii Standard Time (with a 1 hour mid-morning break)
11:00 AM to 4:00 PM PST / 1:00 to 6:00 PM CST / 2:00 to 7:00 PM EST

Location: Online via Zoom

Cost: $450 per person / $375 per person for groups of 3+

To Register: Visit

“If we teach today’s students as we taught yesterday’s, we rob them of tomorrow.”
-John Dewey, Democracy and Education, 1944, p. 167

Who would have thought that one of the most referenced John Dewey quotes could take on an entirely new meaning in the year 2020? With the words of this 100 year-old progressive educator in their hearts and minds–to stop the spread of COVID-19–educators across the world worked quickly this past spring to devise plans for crisis online instruction. It was truly a moment to “learn by doing,” and now that summer is upon us, it’s time to reflect on what we learned and gain the new knowledge we need to build distance learning plans that better reflect the missions of our beloved schools.

This summer program will support individual educators and school teams as they work to design a mission-aligned distance learning program for their school. It is framed around the question, How do we ensure that our distance learning plan is progressive, and aligns with the mission/vision of our school? Guided by expert instructors, the program will function as a professional community of inquiry, or think tank, in which participants will have the opportunity to examine current research and best practices, learn about model distance learning programs, reflect and dialogue with peers, and apply learning to create a solid distance learning program for their unique school context. In summary, the program will include:
– A structured reflection of: What worked well in your most recent crisis online instruction experience? What didn’t? Why?
– Review of research, theory, and policy recommendations
– Communicating to parents
– Review of model-based best practices
– Review of common terms and jargon
– Exposure to model-based tools
– Time for exploration of tools
– Considerations for assessment
– Case study experiences
– Development of mission aligned, progressive distance learning plans
– Time for individuals and/or teams to plan
– Facilitated discussions of plans including needs assessment techniques
– Feedback on plans and alignment to mission and progressive values

This program is designed for both individual educators and school teams that are looking to create a distance learning program for their school community. School communities can range from pre-school to higher education, or non-traditional forms or schooling such as museums or outdoor education programs. Teams can be made up of 3-5 members of a school community who want to engage in the program together.

Participants will meet with instructors on four different days, four hours per day, over the course of three weeks. This will allow time for individuals and school teams to meet on their own (or perhaps with other members of their school community) in between sessions to further develop the plans they are working on. It will also ensure that instructors can support participants as they uncover new questions and problems of practice as they emerge over the course of the summer.

Workshop Objectives:
Participants will be able to:
– Identify research, theory, and policy recommendations (e.g., excerpts from Fed Tech Plan) related to distance learning.
– Describe and apply model-based best practices, model-based tools, and common terms and jargon related to distance learning.
– Examine case study experiences to learn more about progressive approaches to distance learning.
– Develop a mission aligned, progressive distance learning plans for their particular school context.
– Consider and develop distance learning assessment (formative and summative) that support their school’s mission.
– Engage in dialogue with instructors and peers to reflect and further develop their school’s distance learning plan.
– Apply feedback to ensure that the distance learning plan they develop aligns to their school’s mission and progressive values.

Workshop Agenda:

Day 1:

Session A
Workshop Overview
Participant Input (live or ahead of time)
Online Learning and Teaching Overview (theory, policy, and practice)
Jargon and terminology

Session B
Best practice models
Best practice tools
Choice grid (by grade level)
Sandbox and reflection time (by group)

Day 2:

Session A
Review Day 1
Examine case studies (by group)
Mission aligned planning with discussion

Session B
Best practice tools and models, Part II
Sandbox and reflection time (by group)
Homework assignments (draft rough plan with template)

Day 3:

Session A
Practice and tools update (what did you try? what’s new?)
Dialogue in groups re: plans
Sandbox and reflection time (by group)

Session B
One more case study (plan implementation)
Assessment review
Work on plans (in group)
Turn in preliminary plans for review (including school/group mission/values)

Day 4:

Session A
Practice and tools update (what did you try? what’s new?)
Planning reflections
Final sandbox time (by group)

Session B
Review plans with feedback (by group)
Workshop reflections

About the Presenters:

Dr. Michael Menchaca is a professor in the Department of Learning Design and Technology at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. He specializes in online learning and has helped create and establish successful online programs at multiple institutions. He currently coordinates the blended doctoral program in the Department. Dr. Menchaca publishes research in online learning, social justice with technology, and integrating technology into teaching and learning at all levels. He has consulted for numerous universities, schools, districts, and county and state offices. He has served as principal investigator for several state and federal grants. Finally, Dr. Menchaca was an IT specialist for many years, specializing in network management and desktop support.

Dr. Erin Nakano is an Elementary Technology teacher at Lānaʻi High & Elementary School, working with students in grades Pre-K to 5. She is also a supervisor for an afterschool program that employs high school students and a mentor for students taking dual credit courses. Erin earned her PhD in Learning Design and Technology in the Spring of 2020. Her research focused on supporting dual credit students in distance learning environments in a rural setting. In addition to her teaching responsibilities, Erin is involved in several non-profit boards in her community, including the Lānaʻi Youth Center and the Lānaʻi Academy of Performing Arts, and also serves as secretary for the HSTA Lānaʻi Chapter.

Ngan Ta is a Chinese language teacher at ‘Iolani School in Honolulu, Hawai‘i, teaching students grades 7-12. She is also a member of ‘Iolani School’s Technology Advisory Group which assists faculty and students in technology integration. Ngan also served as the Instructional Lead and Technology Lead for STARTALK Chinese summer programs since 2017. Ngan is currently a PhD student in the Department of Learning Design and Technology at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa. Her research interests include online teacher professional development, specifically for language teachers.

Dr. Amber Strong Makaiau will serve as a supporting facilitator, and is the Director of the Hanahau’oli School Professional Development Center. She is also an Associate Specialist at the University of Hawaii at Manoa College of Education Institute for Teacher Education Secondary Program and the Director of Curriculum and Research at the University of Hawai‘i Uehiro Academy for Philosophy and Ethics in Education. She is a dedicated practitioner of philosophy for children Hawai‘i who achieved National Board Certification while teaching secondary social studies in the Hawaii State Department of Education for over ten years.