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Local Author Pens Hawaiian Language Books

Kualapu`u School News Release

Kumu Louella `Opu`ulani Albino has added one more accomplishment to her already significant list for revitalizing `olelo Hawaii on Molokai.  She has authored two new Hawaiian language books for children!

Sponsored by a grant from the Hawaii Tourism Authority, and in partnership with Kualapu`u Public Conversion Charter School, Kumu `Opu`ulani addressed a need for more text-based, easy reader chapter books in Hawaiian Language medium education.  “Ka Wena,” illustrated by Molokai artist Brandon Hirashima, is filled with short stories of Hawaiian culture in the present-day, as seen through the eyes of a lively group of keiki characters.  “Ka Moe`uhane,” illustrated by Molokai artist Jennette “Koki” Foster, is an exciting third grade level mystery novel filled with Hawaiian practices and perspectives that have endured up to our present day. Both books were edited by Kamalu Poepoe.

As the first head Kumu for the Punana Leo Hawaiian medium preschool, which opened its doors on Molokai in 1991, Kumu `Opu`ulani rekindled traditional Hawaiian language among Molokai youngsters, and Hawaiian was heard spoken in fluency for the first time in almost 100 years.

Kumu `Opu`ulani went on to attain her teaching credentials at the University of Hawaii in Hilo, and entered the state public school system, teaching kindergarten at Kula Kaiapuni o Kualapu`u, the Hawaiian Language Immersion program at Kualapu`u Public Conversion Charter School.  Recently retired as of October, 2014, Kumu `Opu`ulani leaves with a legacy hard to match, in the creation of new chapter books for all the keiki of Hawaii.

There will be a book-signing event at the Molokai Public Library on Wednesday, Feb. 25, at 5 p.m.  Come and congratulate our newest Molokai author and illustrators!  These books are available for sale for at the Kualapu`u School office and at Amazon.com.  The sale of these books will benefit Kula Kaiapuni `o Kualapu`u Hawaiian Language Immersion Program.

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