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Earth Week

Culture

Earth Week Blog Posts

Earth Day is a day set aside to recognize the importance of taking care of our planet, or as we call it in Hawaiʻi, mālama hōnua (taking care of the earth).

History

This week, people around the world will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, an international acknowledgment of the need to protect and preserve the planet we call home. In Hawaiʻi, the concept of caring for the land is well-known as mālama ʻāina. Mālama ʻāina takes many forms across different communities in Hawaiʻi, but at its core is a connection to place and family. 

We all have a part to play in caring for our home, so how will you mālama ʻāina this week? In this gallery, learn about how Bishop Museum Education staff worked with Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi at their Heʻeia site to mālama ʻāina and learn more about the significance of the ʻāina called Hoi.

Mahalo a nui loa to our friends at Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi for hosting us and allowing us learn from you and from the ʻāina for which you care for so greatly. Learn more about Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi.

Click on each image to learn more.

Planetarium

The planetarium features many technologies and activities that allow our in-person visitors to experience weather models, see the variety of terrain on earth, and even track pollution levels over time and more. Below find some of these experiences and links to resources from other organizations like NOAA & NASA to try out at home.
the star map of the night sky.

International Space Station: Pass May 14

Use this map to see where to look for the next evening bright pass of the International Space Station over Hawai‘i! Other passes may be visible, but they are not as bright or are in the early morning or possibly too close to sunrise or sunset to be as visible. Data is current as of 4/12/2020, but check Heavens-Above.com for updates as it gets closer to May 14th. You can also search for other ISS flyovers. Be sure to set your location to Hawai‘i in the upper right corner!

Listen to this short description of the International Space Station and how to use the Sky Map.

Eyes On Island Earth Part 1

In this Bishop Museum-produced show, learn from the traditional ahupuaʻa land and resource management system about sustainability today and explore why Hawai‘i is a great place to learn about Earth system science through NASA satellites. Designed for grades 3–5, but suitable for all ages. 25 minutes total. See the lesson plans section for lesson extensions about Earth System Science and the International Space Station.

Eyes On Island Earth Part 2

In this Bishop Museum-produced show, learn from the traditional ahupuaʻa land and resource management system about sustainability today and explore why Hawai‘i is a great place to learn about Earth system science through NASA satellites. Designed for grades 3–5, but suitable for all ages. 25 minutes total. See the lesson plans section for lesson extensions about Earth System Science and the International Space Station.

a circular picture of the earth in a museum.

NOAA Science On a Sphere Explorer App

Do you love our Science On a Sphere exhibit in the Planetarium Lobby? We do too, and now you can explore it on your own mobile device or tablet! Explore visuals of climate data, see information about our oceans, and learn about other planets or the sun. Over 100 different datasets are available. For a guided experience, you can find lesson ideas and more here: https://sos.noaa.gov/sos-explorer/sosx-mobile-uses-and-resources/

NASA Globe Observer App

Be a citizen scientist! Download this free app to your phone or tablet, create a free account, and follow the tutorials. Help NASA scientists gather more accurate data on their satellite observations by providing ground-based observations they can use to make the data better. NASA collects data about the atmosphere, including cloud cover, to help build better models for things like predicting the weather and tracking changes to climate over time.

NASA Climate Science Interactives

Explore information collected by NASA on our changing global climate through interactive activities, photos, real satellite data, quizzes, and more! All for free.

NASA Pollution Satellite Data

Can you observe a decrease in pollution levels during the COVID-19 pandemic? Take a look for yourself!

The Pale Blue Dot by Carl Sagan

At the suggestion of Carl Sagan, on February 14, 1990 NASA engineers turned the Voyager 1 space probe around for one last look at the Earth as it sped towards the fringes of our solar system. From a distance of about four billion miles, Voyager 1 caught Earth suspended in a ray of sunlight, appearing as a pale blue dot about 0.12 pixels in size in the image. Of the image, Dr. Sagan points out, “To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.”

Science

Celebrate earth week with these science-based activities.

a bunch of white papers laying on top of each other.

Mapping your World Activity

Observe the diverse terrestrial landscape of our planet in this data collection activity! Take your keen eyes to the outdoors to map your world like a scientist or satellite. Extended activities and resources included. 

a bunch of white papers laying on top of each other.

Making a Pressed Plant Activity

Make some eco-friendly art at home with your keiki with this pressed plant instruction kit! 

Ocean Plastics Video

Watch and learn about garbage patches of the ocean and how you can make a difference today!

Be a Part of Our Story

Celebrate the extraordinary history, culture, and environment of Hawaiʻi and the Pacific with a gift to Bishop Museum. As a partner in the Museum’s work, you can help to sustain vital collections, research, and knowledge, and inspire exploration and discovery with a tax-deductible donation.

a group of people standing around each other.

Before …. 

On the morning of January 7, 2020, the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum Education team arrived  at Hoi, a marshy part of the Heʻeia wetlands, a 400-acre reclamation project in Heʻeia ahupuaʻa, Koʻolaupoko moku, Oʻahu. Hoi, once a large area for kalo cultivation in the past, is now under the care of Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi, a community-based non-profit, working partnership with two other organizations based in Heʻeia ahupuaʻa: Papahana Kuaola and Paepae o Heʻeia. Led by Bishop Museum Education Director Brandon Bunag, thirteen Education team members prepare to learn about the work happening at Hoi and across Heʻeia. For some members of the team, this will be their first chance to do work in a loʻi, a wetland kalo system.

a group of people standing around a muddy field.

Hoi, or the Heʻeia Wetlands

Hoi is a marshland  created by the combined waters of Haʻikū and ʻIolekaʻa valleys. For many generations, wetland kalo was continuously grown here until the middle of the 1800s.  At that time, other crops such as sugarcane, pineapple and rice became more prominent in the area than kalo.  Eventually, the land was dedicated to cattle ranching, resulting in one of the first broadsides of the battle for water rights on the Windward side of Oʻahu.  This style of land usage greatly contributed to erosion, flooding and increased runoff during the rainy seasons, degrading the health and vitality of both Heʻeia fishpond and Kāneʻohe Bay.  In an effort to control this erosion,  mangrove plants were introduced to the area, but as mangrove becomes invasive when outside its natural range, it outcompeted native plants and impacted the overall ecological health of the area.

a group of people standing in a field.

Mālama the ʻĀina, Mālama the Culture

Eventually, plans for urban development were announced for the area, the land having been in private hands for some years.  This was met with intense community opposition, which resulted in the scuttling of proposed housing developments and a planned golf course.   Later, the Hawaiʻi Community Development Authority took ownership of the property, and in January 2010,  Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi acquired a 38-year lease with the intent of promoting educational and cultural programs, engaging in ecologically sound restoration of the wetlands and sustainable agriculture for the community.  Based upon traditional and historical land use and practices, and with the blessings of kūpuna in the community,  Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi has initiated various projects to rejuvenate Hoi as a center for natural, cultural, social and economic self-determination.

a group of people standing in a muddy field.

In Working, One Learns

The area stewarded by Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi contains many acres of land intended to be renewed for growing kalo, and the Bishop Museum Education team had a chance to assist staff from Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi in harvesting from one of these loʻi. Throughout the day, Education team members connected with the mission to “māhuahua ʻai o Hoi,” to regrow the fruits of Hoi, and importantly, colleagues grew closer connections to each other.  The loʻi became a metaphor for the connection Bishop Museum has with our community, our neighbors, and our mission to be a gathering place for lifelong learning, preservation of knowledge, and living culture. The loʻi served as classroom, lesson, and source of joy that day, reminding us of the simple, but impactful ʻōlelo noʻeau (proverbial saying): “Ma ka hana ka ʻike,” meaning that through doing, one learns.

a group of people posing for a picture in a field.

Honest Fatigue, Honest Aches

At the end of the workday, Education team members gather to record a special moment connection to community, success in learning a few of the lessons that start in the loʻi, and renewed enthusiasm for communicating cultural knowledge and experiences to the communities they serve at Bishop Museum.  Back row, left to right: Jason F., David O., Tony S., Kelli S., Bill M., Brandon B., Aya U., and Kaʻehu A. Front row, left to right: Romee G., Donnette T., Atsumi Y., Kapalikū M., and Cheyenne V.

a group of people standing in a river.

…After

Another ʻōlelo noʻeau states: he lepo ka ʻai a Oʻahu, a māʻona nō i ka lepo – the lepo (earth) is the food of those on Oʻahu, and those on Oʻahu are satisfied with the lepo. For the Bishop Museum Education team, no lepo was consumed while working at Hoi with Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi, but the work was satisfying to the core. Nearby, an available streamlet gave them a moment to wash in the refreshing waters that flow through Hoi, bringing life to people and plants, and adding nutrients for Heʻeia makai (oceanward). Mahalo a nui loa to our friends at Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi for hosting us and allowing us learn from you and from the ʻāina for which you care for so greatly.  If you would like to learn more about Kākoʻo ʻŌiwi, please visit their website at https://kakoooiwi.org/

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1525 BERNICE STREET
HONOLULU, HAWAI’I 96817

OPEN DAILY 9 AM – 5 PM

1525 BERNICE STREET
HONOLULU, HAWAI’I 96817

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