Soaking up culture
Forest View High School’s Polinetia Fa’atasi embarked on a whirlwind trip of the island of Oahu.
The group of 42, 25 of whom were students, left on December 3 for an 11-day tour.
Forest View High School teacher in charge and tutor Aaron Mutua said it was a ‘‘primo tour’’.
He described the trip as a performing arts and sightseeing tour.
But the festivities began before the group had stepped on to the island.
‘‘On the plane there were three secondary schools including ourselves, Western Springs High School from Auckland (kapa haka) and a Hawaiian school returning from Hamilton Boys’ High School . . . The captain announced that we were all going to have a competition,’’ Mr Mutua said.
After the air hostesses spoke to each teacher in charge, a cultural competition began.
‘‘The Hawaiian school pulled out so it was just us and the kapa haka group. We had a sing off. The entire cabin was full,’’ he said.
While on Oahu, Polinetia Fa’atasi spent their time performing at the Polynesian Culture Centre and at local schools where they participated in workshops.
‘‘We had a Hawaiian workshop where the kids learnt a Hawaiian item and about the different Hawaiian instruments and then we performed for the senior school,’’ Mr Mutua said.
The group was also part of the 70th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbour. ‘‘ We went around the island to see locations where films had been made,’’ he said.