Geography bee a test of Hawaiian names, meanings

Kamehameha Schools Maui Elementary School hosted an inaugural Hawaiian Geography Bee on Oct. 18. Students were tested on wahi pana (significant place names and meanings).

Kindergarten through 2nd-grade students could choose to memorize a fact and recite it during the event.

Students in grades 3-5 were represented by three contestants per grade level.

The following students competed in the event: Naneki Frias, Kaiwohi Ngalu, Ka’apuni Uweko’olani, Nainoa Cagasan, Nalani Davis, Keakaha’apoli Kaia, Kala’e Ching, Ho’ohieokala Luna-Beamer, Akoni Salomon, Leimana Purdy, Pi’ilani Tom, Pauoa Spencer Ni’ihau Braun, Kaliko’aela Tonu, Alohikamahina Worth, Kihaapi’ilani Kahalehau, Leialoha Sylvester and Kaleihulu Wojcieski.

Winners of this first event were: Salomon (first) and Kahalehau (second). Elementary school Hawaiian language and culture teachers Kau’i Aikala and Ivalee Kamalu created the event to increase student knowledge of Hawaii.

The Hawaiian Geography Bee was part of the schoolwide Po’aalima ‘Ula’ula (Red Friday) event that fosters cultural pride in Kamehameha Schools Maui ohana.

Middle school and high school campuses hosted a variety of speakers that presented demonstrations and informational sessions for the students.