Moanalua Gardens Foundation
Cultural and Environmental Education in Hawaii
1352 Pineapple Place, Honolulu, Hawaii 96819-1754
Phone: (808) 839-5334; Fax (808) 839-3658


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Classroom Presentations

MGF Education Specialists give slide presentations and engage students in hands-on activities.

  • $50 per classroom presentation for max. of 60 students.
  • Sessions are approximately 75 minutes.
  • Classroom teachers are responsible for carrying out prep and follow-up activities suggested by MGF.

Geology of Hawaii

The present landforms of Hawaii are primarily the result of volcanic activity and erosion.
Major points covered include: the origin of the Hawaiian Islands (plate tectonics and hot spot theory); constructive processes (formation of shield volcanoes and secondary activities); and destructive processes (erosion, landslides, emergence and submergence, stands of the sea and the resulting pali, valleys and plains).


Water Systems of Hawaii

The limited fresh water of Hawaii is the result of the distribution of orographic rainfall, the nature of the aquifer cover, the permeability and impermeability of different rocks, the geologic structure, the relationship between fresh and salt water and the absence or presence of caprock.
Major points covered include: orographic rainfall, types of water systems, Ghyben-Herzberg lens, principle ways of obtaining water, locations and roles of forests, conservation of available water and alternative sources of water

Geography of Hawaii

The weather, climate and topography of Hawaii have resulted in the distinct geographic zonation of the Islands wherein particular native plants and animals naturally occur.
Major points covered include: the geographic isolation of Hawaii, plant and animal dispersal methods, vegetation zones (scientific as well as early Hawaiian descriptions), natural communities and microclimates.

Native Hawaiian Plants & Animals

Many of the plants and animals of Hawaii are unique because of insular evolutionary processes enhanced by the Islands' isolated location, stable tropical climate and a variety of stable microclimates. These conditions allowed many of the limited pioneer species that arrived here to survive, adapt and evolve undisturbed for a very long time.
Major points covered include: dispersal methods, indigenous vs. endemic species, adaptations, and the interdependence of plants and animals in an ecosystem.

The endemic freshwater hihiwai

Wetlands & Water Birds of Hawaii

Some of the few remaining natural habitats of Hawaii, and the rare and endangered plants and animals that live within, are managed and protected in Hawaiian wetlands. The emphasis of this presentation is on wetlands and waterbirds.
Major points covered include: Hawaiian waterbirds, seabirds and migratory birds, native vs. introduced species, indigenous vs. endemic species, threatened, endangered and extinct species, impact on habitat and species, and wetland management.

Humans & the Environment

Hawaii has been changed by its people, and the impact has accelerated in the post-contact era (the past 200 years).
Major points covered include: Polynesian impact, early post-contact impact, mid-1800s to early 1900s impact, reforestation efforts with non-native species, current forms of impact, possible solutions and resource protection programs aimed at sustainability

Development of Hawaiian Society

From the first settlement of the Hawaiian Islands until 1795, the Polynesian culture influenced how early settlers used the land, and in turn, how the land, its limited resources and subsequent human population growth shaped the Hawaiian culture.
Major points covered include: population and settlement, religion, kapu system, societal hierarchy, heiau, the period of long voyages, evolution of land and resource management systems and early foreign influence.

A petroglyphy field on the island of Hawaii

Moanalua Traditions

Oral history specific to the ahupuaa of Moanalua is interwoven with the history of all the Hawaiian Islands.
Major points covered include: oral traditions, history of Oahu from the mid-1600s to the present (references to specific chiefs, the significance of Kamehameha the Great coming to Moanalua and the unification of the islands), place names, and the people who have settled and "owned" Moanalua.

Preparation for Neighbor Island Trip

Specific references, natural features, history, etc. are offered for teachers and students scheduling a neighbor island trip.
Major points covered include: a general overview of significant history, sites, geology and special natural environments to help familiarize and prepare groups for a neighbor island experience. We can also help with planning itineraries. Note: Contact MGF regarding cost/fees for an education specialist to accompany your group to assist interpretation of significant aspects for one day of your trip.

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All rights reserved.
revised 7 September 2007
Hawaiian diacriticals have been intentionally omitted.