Educational Programs

Cultural Programs for School Groups

The reopening of Hawaiian Hall in August 2009 was both a restoration and reimagining of the “soul” of Bishop Museum. 

Bishop Museum offers a set of school programs and tours to complement the new complex.

The following programs are for Pre-K through 12th grade which are presenter led programs and tours.

Please Note: Due to the nature of the building we do not allow unguided school groups in Hawaiian Hall. All student groups with 6 or more students MUST be led by a Bishop Museum staff member or docent.

No Nā Kamali‘i
(Hawaiian-Hall based programs for Grades Pre-K to 3)

Hawaiian Hall Pre-K programs are based on the Smithsonian Early Education Center Learning Through Objects Program.  Via the Learning Through Objects Program children are engaged in taking their first steps toward literacy while also generating excitement in learning. Presenter methods includes storytelling, interactive play and using the visual arts to better understand objects beyond being behind the glass.  All programs are held in the Hawaiian Hall Complex.

• 25 students maximum (20 students maximum for Pre K & K)
Each Pre K & K Class Must have 1 adult per 5 students. Grades 1 - 3 must have 1 adult per 10 students.

Hawai‘i Preschool Content Standards, December 2006:
Domain III:  Communication, Language Development and Literacy

Kamali‘i Programs:

Ke Ao Nani, The Beautiful World
Location:  Kai Ākea
Join us on an interactive exploration of the spaces above, below, and all around us. Note: Ke Ao Nani is a 30-minute long program, intended for Pre-K students.

Holo Kai, On the Ocean Blue 
Location:  Kai Ākea
Traveling over water took special skills.  Come along in our waa and paddle with a hoe on this ocean voyage! Note: Holo Kai is intended for K to 3 students.

Ka Leo o ka Pahu, The Voice of the Drum
Location:  Wao Kanaka
Feel the rhythm of the drums and explore the Hawaiian pahu and ipu. Note: Ka Leo o ka Pahu is intended for K-3 students.

No Nā ‘Ōpio
(Hawaiian Hall-based programs for Grades 4 to 12)

Bishop Museum's ‘Ōpio programs, aimed at grades 4-12, are 55 minutes in length.  There are three parts of each experience. 

1.  A tour of the listed collection items. 
2.  Individual student activities. 
3.  A group activity featuring the theme.

Teacher’s information sheet lists the two or three Hawaiian values featured, program objectives; a list of essential questions and a vocabulary list.  It is also recommended that the teacher visit to preview some of the collections in one of more of the wao (realms) of Hawaiian Hall.  The Bishop Museum has made a commitment to listing DOE Content and Performance standards for each program.  Each program lists them separately.

All programs are held in the Hawaiian Hall Complex.

Teachers may also elect to design a special program with the Culture Education Staff by appointment.  Please inquire.

• 55 minutes • 25 students maximum
Each class must have 1 adult per 10 students

‘Ōpio Programs:

Mahina Kapu, Our Sacred Moon (Grades 4-6)
Location:  Wao Kanaka & Atrium
Learn about the traditional kapu system and how the moon guided how people fished and farmed.
• 55 minutes • 25 students maximum

‘Imi ‘Āina, Seeking New lands (Grades 4-6)
Location:  Kai Ākea, Wao Kanaka & Atrium
Explore Ocean voyaging, way-finding and human migrations to Hawai‘i.
• 55 minutes • 25 students maximum

Nā Mea Pa‘ahana, The Tools Of Work (Grades 4-6)
Location:  Hale Pili; Wao Kanaka & Atrium
Explore the ‘ahupua‘a, its rich environment and how resources are cared for and shared.
• 55 minutes • 25 students maximum

Makahiki, Let the Games Begin (Grades 4-6)(Available only during Makahiki season ~ November through February)

Location:  Kai Ākea, Wao Kanaka & Lawn Understand why the Makahiki Season honors the god Lono.  See the tools of the season and learn some of the games that are part of this celebration.

- 4th grade and up is a 55 minute program beginning at Hawaiian Hall
• 55 minutes • 25 students maximum

All Wao Tour (Grades 4-12)
Location:  Kai Ākea; Wao Kanaka; Wao Lani
A 55 minute tour to all three realms.  Approximately 18 minutes per floor.
Teachers may request in advance, specific topic/objects in a Wao.

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