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Winter 2012 Issue

Let’s Get Physical - The Importance of Play at ‘Iolani
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Winter 2012 - Feature | The Sullivan Center

The Sullivan Center at ‘Iolani School

During the 150 years since its founding, ‘Iolani School has earned a reputation for promoting academic excellence and personal growth in an atmosphere that is challenging and competitive, yet also caring and nurturing.

Committed to developing well-rounded, curious, intelligent, and active citizens, ‘Iolani’s curriculum has historically focused on classroom learning that is purposeful and disciplined, while also being warm and compassionate. And while the school continues to respect its rich past, ‘Iolani recognizes that in today’s changing and increasingly global, technology-driven world, the skills that students need to successfully navigate their futures are evolving. To make meaningful contributions to their community and world, students must have skills and experiences that allow them to apply and extend their classroom learning to the real world around them. ‘Iolani’s new Sullivan Center will foster, develop, and grow this new type of learning.

“…the Sullivan Center will provide a centerpiece for the entire community to engage in the future of learning.”
With groundbreaking scheduled in summer 2012 and completion in fall 2013, the Sullivan Center will be a place where studies and classroom learning take on new meaning as they intersect with the real challenges of the world. Students will take what they have learned in science, history, art, and more and apply their knowledge to solve real life problems. They will draw upon the love and excitement they have developed for a particular subject and translate that passion to improve the world in which they live.

Situated at the center of the ‘Iolani School campus, the Sullivan Center will be a hub of learning, discovery, and problem solving. Upper and Lower school students alike will be able to engage in hands-on activities—from robotics to community service—as they participate in multi-disciplinary projects that will add new relevance to what they are learning in class.

With an exterior that is largely glass, the Sullivan Center has been designed with the belief that openness and the pursuit of passion will stimulate creativity and participation throughout the entire school community. Flexible spaces and advanced technology will facilitate collaboration not only within ‘Iolani, but with the great wide world beyond our campus.

In addition, the Sullivan Center will be one of Hawai‘i’s first Collaborative High Performance Schools—incorporating LEED Silver environmental design elements, an urban roof-top garden, energy-efficient design, and other sustainable features.

From the ground up, the four-story, 40,000-square-foot Sullivan Center will be designed to stimulate creativity, collaboration, and communication. By developing such skills in students from a young age, ‘Iolani will further its commitment to developing well-rounded students who will make positive contributions to the communities in which they live.

As ‘Iolani celebrates its 150th anniversary during the 2012 to 2013 school year, the Sullivan Center will provide a centerpiece for the entire community to engage in the future of learning. Building upon ‘Iolani’s reputation for academic excellence, the Sullivan Center will foster creativity, collaboration, and citizenship as it enables students to develop essential skills and become thriving, responsible, contributing members of our community and rapidly changing world.

The following is a description of how each floor of the Sullivan Center will bring learning, creativity, and innovation to life:

Ground Floor >>
The ground floor is where the excitement  begins. Whether at the senior benches or in the robotics shop and work room, students will collaborate and share ideas about the world around them.  At the senior benches, students build community, share experiences, and talk about their collective challenges, while in the robotics room they collaborate on ideas and work in teams to solve problems. Collaboration, Exploration, Design, Innovation and Application happen here.

Second Floor >>
Including a modern, new library with the latest technological tools, the school archives, a workroom and seminar rooms, this is where research, inquiry and discovery will take place. Here, students will find background information for projects and presentations, study the past, and envision the future. Discovery, Research, and Inquiry happen here.

Third Floor >>
With the advent of 21st century skills, ‘Iolani has enhanced the three Rs—Reading, Writing and ’Rithmetic—with the three Cs—Collaboration, Creativity, and Community. This floor will be the centerpiece of ‘Iolani’s community service efforts. Containing flexible project space, white board walls/writable table wall surfaces, a seminar room, a media lab and an audio visual room, the third floor will enable students to engage with others across the globe, collaborate on projects, and create solutions to improve our community and world. Community, Creativity and Collaboration happen here.

Fourth Floor >>
With movable wet labs, conference rooms, and flexible project space, the fourth floor of the Sullivan Center is a space dedicated to design thinking. Here, students will plan, create, and test ideas while developing problem solving skills and learning to find solutions. Projects may range from developing business models to devising solutions to school or community concerns. Innovation, Design, Solutions, and Application happen here.

Rooftop >>
One of Hawai‘i’s first urban, rooftop gardens will be a place where Upper andLower School students learn about sustainability and how food moves from farm to table. Students will develop a business plan to sell produce to the community and in so doing will gain invaluable experiences that will help them throughout their lives. Sustainability, Collaboration and Entrepreneurship happen here.

Comments from Readers

  1. C7b267295762926977d6b00943d7294c
    Mark Avery on 2/11/2012 at 9:29am

    Fantastic concept in the Iolani tradition of excellence, integrity and community service. Iolani no ka oi.