K-12 Teacher Workshops



PAAC's K-12 Teacher Workshops are developed in partnership with the East-West Center Arts Program and are open to all primary and secondary school teachers statewide. Held one to two times per year (fall and spring), these workshops are designed to support, inspire, and equip Hawai‘i's teachers with globally themed curriculum ideas, classroom skills, and community resources necessary for their and their students' success. Workshops include lessons in curriculum development, hands-on cultural activities, and exchange with fellow teachers and community experts.


Please contact Merle Grybowski at asc@paachawaii.org for more information about upcoming workshops. Most expenses, including flights, meals and lodging, are covered by generous support from community donors.


Past Teacher Workshops


The Art of Hana Keaka
After a pause in workshops during the COVID-19 pandemic, our most recent workshop in November 2022 hosted 18 educators from across the state. Public- and private-school teachers from O‘ahu, Maui, Lana‘i and the Island of Hawai‘i explored the art of hana keaka (Hawaiian theatre) through the workshop theme Moʻolelo (Storytelling), featured at the East-West Center Gallery. The workshop included lessons in curriculum development, hands-on cultural activities, and exchange with fellow teachers and community experts. Presentations explored elements of artistic and production design and choices in creating hana keaka productions.


Puppetry in the Classroom

Thirty teachers from three islands experienced a rich lineup of trainings at the “Puppetry in the Classroom” workshop in April 2019. Hands-on and interactive sessions led by experts guided teachers on a puppetry “tour” throughout Hawaiʻi, India, Indonesia, Japan, and other destinations and cultures of the Asia-Pacific. Read More.


Preserving Cultural Legacies

Twenty-six teachers representing 20 schools on four islands converged for an action-packed weekend in November 2018 to learn about effective methods in the preservation of cultural traditions and knowledge. Participants learned about oral and photo history, enjoyed a guided tour of China Town, and tried their hand at taiko and o-bon dancing. Teachers were also provided with activity ideas to replicate in their classrooms. Read More.


Teacher Voices


"This was, by far, the BEST [professional development] experience I've ever been a part of.  I came away with so much more knowledge, ideas, and inspiration for my classes!  It also helped me to see India in a new light: Prior to this workshop, I thought India would be a place I'd never want to visit, but now I'm absolutely eager to travel there one day.  I especially loved being able to network with other teachers and learn first-hand from the experts themselves.  What an incredible opportunity this was and I'm definitely looking forward to the next workshop!" 
- Hawai’i DOE teacher


“Thank you very much for the workshop on Turkey. I cannot tell you how exciting it is to attend a well-run, informative, and rewarding event like this. I am frustrated by workshops that I feel I could have learned more by reading an article in fifteen minutes. This Turkey workshop will/did/has energized teachers, and improved our understanding of that country, and serves a higher mission.”
-Hawai’i DOE teacher