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HBA Elementary Eaglet’s Nest

January 2013

Vorderbruegge’s Voice

A new year is upon us and there are exciting events happening on our campus. Our focus continues to be on sharing the love of Jesus, academic rigor, and the physical, emotional and social growth of our students. Thank you for your outpouring of blessings over the Christmas holiday. HBA is truly a special place.


Mrs. Vorderbruegge 

Safety First

Thank you for your prayers for the students, faculty and families in Newtown, Connecticut. Tragedies such as these bring us together as a community to revisit our safety plans and ensure we are doing everything we can to protect everyone on our campus. Thank you to those who have sent emails regarding HBA safety. Mr. Kaneshiro and I are working with the HBA Safety Director and Maintenance Director to address any safety issues. Beginning January 14th, families will be asked to display an HBA placard in the windshield of their vehicle during afternoon pick up. This will help us ensure that students are being picked up by approved persons. Please make sure your emergency information and authorized pick up names are accurate in mybackpack. For visitors to campus, please make sure you stop at the security booth, sign in and receive a visitor’s badge. Our security personnel will be making contact with the front office regarding each visitor. This is an added step of accountability, and we appreciate your patience and understanding.

We hold monthly fire drills, our evacuation drill in December went well, and we will be having a lock down drill soon. It is important that our students and faculty understand what they are to do in various situations.  Most importantly, let us remember that God is in control and His gentle hand protects us.

Healthier Snack Bar

Thank you for your support as we transition to the healthier snack bar options. New choices include: Goldfish crackers, cereal bars, string cheese, yogurt, nutrigrain bars, yogurt bars, carrots and ranch dressing and Ritz cheese crackers. Items are priced between $1.00 and $1.35. Potato chips, candy and ice cream will no longer be sold.

Brain Research for Learning

How can neuroscientists and teachers work together to provide the ultimate learning opportunities for students? John Medina’s book Brain Rules identifies 12 rules that help foster good learning – whether that be at school or in the office! Over the next few months, I will be highlighting these brain rules.

John Medina’s
Brain Rule #1: Exercise boosts brain power – Our brains were built for walking. To improve your thinking skills, move. Exercise gets blood to your brain. 
Amy Vorderbruegge’s
Brain Rule #2: God has created us in His image, and our brains are amazing! 
       Our brain stem serves as our survival mechanism – maintaining heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, and receiving messages from our five senses. The cerebellum controls basic muscle movements and motor skills.  
       The limbic brain handles eating, drinking, sleeping, hormones and emotions. 
       The forebrain includes the thalamus, hypothalamus, amygdala, and hippocampus. The hippocampus controls our memories and determines what information should be sent to long term memory. (important to know for learning!) 
       The neocortex is responsible for high-level thinking, problem solving, language, planning, vision, etc… The four lobes of the neocortex are key in learning. (more important information regarding learning!) 
       There are billions of brain cells (neurons) within our brain. When the dendrites (fingers) of the neurons reach out to each other to make a connection – learning occurs. (Wow – even more learning connections!)

Taking care of our brains and understanding how to utilize what we know about the brain will enhance our ability to instruct and work efficiently and productively.  More information can be found from: Erlauer, L (2003), The Brain Compatible Classroom. Medina, J. (2008), Brain Rules.

John Rosemond

Don’t miss this opportunity to learn more about parenting and understanding our children. Dr. John Rosemond is a nationally known author, psychologist, and syndicated columnist, who is coming to our community. There are two opportunities to hear Dr. Rosemond’s practical and witty words:

Tuesday, January 15,  7:00-8:30p.m. HBA High School Gym – “Parenting with Love and Leadership.”

Saturday, January 19, 9:00a.m-12:30pm University Avenue Baptist Church, “Keys to Effective Discipline” Cost is $15 per person, $10 per person if you attend the HBA event. Childcare for pre-registered children ages 1-pre-kdg, $10. To register your child/children, contact UABC, 947-5008 or uabchawaii@gmail.com  On-line registration for both events is open. Contact Cindy Gaskins at cgaskins@hba.net for more information.


Hawaii Baptist Academy is in the midst of admissions season. Mr. Kaneshiro is busy giving family tours, conducting interviews and sharing the love of Jesus via HBA. If you know of families who are looking for a Christian education, share your experiences as an HBA parent with them and invite them to apply. Your prayers are appreciated as we make admissions decisions. God is good and has provided us fabulous families – we have much to be grateful for.

Christmas Canned Food Drive

On behalf of Olivet Baptist Church, Dr.Tim Morita, and the Food Pantry Staff, we would like to thank the HBA Elementary Campus for their outpouring of Aloha and generosity towards our canned food drive this past month. Olivet's Food Pantry serves over 200 individuals and families from across the Island each month and continues to grow. Due to the overwhelming need within our community our food pantry has been over burdened with the rising cost of food. Through the help of the Hawaii Food Bank and Aloha Harvest we are able to subsidize some of our cost but find that we still run short each and every month. Due to the abundance of canned food donations from your food drive we have enough food to serve our patrons for the next two months without having to do additional purchases from our participating agencies. Organizations such as Hawaii Baptist Academy play a big part in supplementing the over 100 food pantrys across the State of Hawaii and without your generous contributions we would not be able to service our patrons on a consistent basis. Again on behalf of the Olivet Baptist Church Ohana, thank you very much and we wish you a Happy 2013.

Mahalo Nui,  Leighton Miyachi HBA '84
Olivet Baptist Church Food Pantry Ministry

Black and Gold Day

The elementary campus will be celebrating Homecoming with the High School by having a Black and Gold day this Friday. Wear your HBA spirit attire and come and show your spirit at the basketball game Friday night. HBA will be hosting LeJardin with girls varsity to begin at 5:00 and boys varsity at 6:30. $5.00 admission for adults, $3.00 for non-HBA students. HBA students are free with their school ID. There will be chili, hot dogs, chips, and popsicles available as well.

Geography Bee

The annual HBA Geography Bee is fast approaching. Can you name the 7 continents? Identify Tibet on a map? Fourth, Fifth and Sixth graders have been busy practicing their geography skills. Thanks to Mr. Sato for organizing this event for our school. The students will be represented by Mia (4G), Matthew (4B), Kellie (4W), Nicholas (5G), Carter (5B), Cole (5W), Reanne (6E), Payton (6W), Missy (6B) and Brienna (6G). Best of luck to each of you!

ACSI Student Activities

HBA is happy to be a participating member of the Association of Christian Schools International. This year our students will be participating in student activities hosted by ACSI such as Creative Writing and Math Olympics. These activities allow us to compete academically with other Christian schools in the Hawaii and California region.

Touching the Community

Our students have many opportunities to touch our community – both on and off our campus. Here are just a few of the most recent events: 

Eagle Choir – performances at Ala Moana, Malulani Hale and the annual Christmas concert at Olivet Baptist. 
Student Council – caroling at Sacred Hearts Convent. 
Canned Food Drive, Operation Christmas Child – all school events 
Kindergarten – caroling at Malulani Hale 
Kinderbuddies – 5th grade students join our Kindergarteners monthly for exciting learning activities 
Pencil Pals – our 3rd and 1st grade students enjoy time together learning from each other. 

Our students also have opportunities to serve on campus – with JPO and in chapel. Each of these are ways for students to give back and share their talents with each other.

Sixth Grade Science Fair

Our parlor was recently transformed into a giant Science Fair. Many of you were able to drop by and check out the fun.  Experiments with plants, cooling agents, lung capacity and crickets were just a few of the projects that were on display. Science teacher, Mrs. Morihara has been instructing students all year in how to ask a great science question – it is evident from the experiments that our HBA students have excelled with this task!  Congratulations to Jayni Ishikawa, Karlyn Oura, Noah Tatsuyama and Kristin Lau who will represent HBA at the District Science Fair in mid-February. 

Our Learning Environment

Highlights from our student’s recent learning experiences:
Kindergarten – Writing sentences, value of money, the Christmas Nativity story, handwriting and comparing versions of The Gingerbread Boy. 
First Grade – Simple machines, making Gingerbread houses, measurement, character traits and comprehension strategies.
Second Grade – Native Americans, the Christmas story of Jesus’ birth, multiplication/division and writing paragraphs
Third Grade – Character traits, comprehension strategies, Advent and the 50 states
Fourth Grade – Rectangular and global coordinates, The Best Christmas Pageant Ever, Abraham Lincoln biography and vocabulary
Fifth Grade – Keeping Room, character comparison, surveying and the American Revolution
Sixth Grade –geometry and probability, levers and pulleys, a fabulous Science Fair and Homeless Bird.

Upcoming Events

Jan. 9 – BOB Day
Jan. 9 – Eagle Scholar Assembly (Grades 5-6)
Jan. 10 –  Geography Bee (grades 4-6)
Jan. 10-11 – Boys volleyball tryouts
Jan. 21 – No School in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Jan. 24 – 100th day of school
Jan. 29 – noon dismissal – teacher inservice

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