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Staff

We believe in the unique skills, life experiences, and passions that each of our talented teachers brings versus requiring accredited teaching degrees. All staff members are CPR, Wilderness & Remote First Aid certified, and trained in emergency and extreme weather preparedness.

Bianca Antonio, founder & teacher

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"Aloha, my name is Bianca. I was an employee in the public school system for many years. I felt that there was a big hole missing out of the educational value for the keiki in schools. I dreamt to fill that hole and with that dream came the vision of 'āina based learning – images of the forests here on Maui, local regenerative farmers, and knowledge of foraging. Then to my surprise, Pono Outdoor Program evolved. I offer a holistic approach to the child’s specific developmental needs. I teach in a way that will foster resilient, confident, and independent thinkers.  I am honored to have your keiki as a part of this program where sovereignty meets the children and they are able to learn and grow to be pono with the ʻāina."

Morgan Lewis, teacher

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"I have always seen myself as a teacher. Discovering Pono Outdoor program has allowed me to teach in a way that resonates with how I believe education should be. After working in public schools I realized traditional schooling was missing crucial knowledge for personal sovereignty. Empowering future generations to take accountability for their health, happiness and prosperity is vital for a sustainable future. As I teacher I value cultivating both awareness of self and awareness of environment. Seeing the land as something that can not only feed us, but heal us is an incredible asset. I teach cultivating inner awareness through yoga, qi gong, meditation and play. Coupling this with survival skills is at the core of our curriculum. I feel so grateful for this opportunity to both learn and teach what I value so deeply."

Ariana Light, teacher

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"Aloha! My name is Ariana, aka Ms. Ari. I am both flown and grown on Maui. I moved here when I was 15 and have so much gratitude for what Hawaii has taught me. Originally from Orcas Island, Washington, I was a small island girl who blossomed into the melting pot of Hawaii. Ever since I was a child I have been passionate about music, writing, performing, and hands-on arts. I have years of education in the fields of music, performance, and English writing. I love hand sewing and repurposing clothing and other items. I have always loved exploring the world with children and helping them feed their passions. It is an honor to find such an amazing way to simultaneously nurture the keiki and my interests. Grateful to be invited to bring all my skills forward to share!"

Nāpua Hūʻeu, Hawaiian customs advisor

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"I am a graduate of the Punana Leo and Kula Kaiapuni o Maui, Hawaiian language immersion programs. My family is rooted to East Maui and I currently live in Haiku where I homeschool my 8yo son. I am committed to addressing a spectrum of issues plaguing Hawai‘i and its people. In 2016, myself and a group of concerned citizens formed the Hana Highway Regulation which is a civil volunteer initiative that rallies for responsible tourism management and visitor impact mitigation. My passion project is the restoration of Honomanu ahupua‘a which falls under the East Maui Farm, a conglomerate of farms and farmers dedicated to reestablishing East Maui's ability to feed Hawai‘i again, to the extent as it did in the past. I am notably vocal about local issues including homelessness, wild food resource eradication and stream water restoration. I am adamant about teaching the next generation the importance of Hawaiian customs and cultural principles which is why I was pleased to accept the request to serve as a customs and cultural advisor for the Pono Outdoor Program."

Nāpua's activism here

Community

Our keiki have the opportunity to learn from many members of all ages in our community through field trips, guest teachers, family involvement, and volunteers. We are so grateful to co-create in a multi-generational learning environment.

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