There is always something happening at Pono! Read about our field trips, visiting teachers, classes, and special events.



Read on and join the Pono children in their learning adventures! 

Come And Follow Me...

Pono parent and chef George Duran taught the older children how to make meatballs. They measured and mixed all of the ingredients and watched in anticipation as George cooked the meatballs in a marinara sauce. No one was disappointed with the results!


This week the older Pono children and Dr. A studied scale and the physics of suspension bridges. Then they put their engineering knowledge to work to design their own bridges.


Meanwhile, Back At The Ranch...

The Pono friends practiced the math skills they worked on last week with Maysaa. The younger children enjoyed math games that reinforce counting and number recognition. The older children continued their work in various topics, including subtraction, multiplication, place value, equivalence, and algebra.


Our younger Pono friends learned about the forces that form rocks and then simulated the process of rock formation. The children experimented with crayon "rocks" and used pressure and heat to create examples of sedimentary, igneous, and metamorphic rocks. Madelyn assisted with the hammer! 


The Pono friends had many opportunities to explore the wonderful world of words this week. Julietta met with her literacy groups, and the children also enjoyed time reading independently and with friends.


This week the younger children used their sleuthing skills to solve mysteries. Madelyn had written clues in invisible ink, which the children decoded with watercolors. The clues led the children throughout the Pono space and finally out to Marcus Garvey Park. At the end of the lesson the children made their own clues and guided their friends to solve them.



Here We Go, Pono, Here We Go...

We started our week with a trip to the American Museum of Natural History. The children visited the Morgan Memorial Hall of Gems, where they had the opportunity to handle minerals such as mica, which they learned is used in oven doors. Pono friends also visited other halls in the museum, where they learned about a variety of topics, including dinosaurs, primates, and cultures around the world.


On Thursday we participated in Randall’s Island Urban Farm’s Annual Rice Festival. The Pono friends traveled to the event in comfort on a bus provided by the NYC Parks Department! Nick Storrs and EunYoung Sebazco explained different types of rice and then invited the children to thresh, hull, and winnow rice plants that had been harvested at the Urban Farm. The children took turns on a bicycle-powered rice huller and especially enjoyed tossing rice in winnowing baskets to separate the grain from the chaff. Everyone was hungry after all that work, but first we had to help make lunch! We mixed up a tasty brown rice salad full of veggies and then made onigiri, or Japanese rice balls, filled with pickled plums. A special treat was in store for dessert. We watched as a chef pounded rice with a large mallet and EunYoung quickly turned the rice in a traditional mortar on loan from the Japanese General Consulate. They kept a steady rhythm and the result was delicious mochi! We now have a greater appreciation of rice and the work involved in bringing it to our tables.


This week we headed to the Center for Book Arts, an organization that preserves the traditional art of making books. Our host, Michael Reid, showed us letterpress blocks and explained how they are used in a printing press. Michael also taught us how to make pop-up books and accordion books. The children enjoyed using tools of the trade, including bone folders, to make their own books. The finished results are beautiful examples of books as objects of art!


After our bookmaking trip, we headed to Hobo Audio to learn about sound engineering. Max Holland, a senior sound designer and audio engineer, explained the work he does. The children especially enjoyed learning how different sounds are added to a commercial and how those sounds are made. Max even invited us each to have a turn singing in the recording studio!


Mentorship Fridays...

Our songwriting group met with singer and musician Ali Dineen to continue fine-tuning their compositions. The Pono comic book team and artist Bek Millhouse put the finishing touches on their super heroes. The Pono space is a true incubator of creativity and hard work!