Learning Place

“First is the foundation, the building comes after.” Our kūpuna understood that proper study of any skill was necessary before any venture could be pursued. At times, without proper education, death would be the unfortunate result. When it came to navigation, years of study of the movement of the stars, the sun, the moon, and the clouds must be taken. Years were also spent on studying the movement of the current, along with the local sea life and bird life. All of these things aided in the art of proper navigation. Since it was no easy task to navigate a canoe, proper heiau or temples were erected in areas where this kind of study would be most advantageous. Each island possessed several navigational learning centers to train their ho‘okele (navigators). On O‘ahu alone, there are at least 3 famous heiau that were dedicated to this task: Pu‘u Makakilo in Honouliuli, Kū‘īlioloa in Wai‘anae, and Kapukapuākea in Pa‘ala‘a. In this section of our website, you will find resources and aids which will help both teachers and students to learn more about ‘ōlelo Hawai‘i (Hawaiian language) and mo‘omeheu Hawai‘i (Hawaiian culture).