Upper School Courses (Grades 9-12)

Summer at HPA, June 25 - July 20, 2018

Full Day Class (Periods 1, 2, and 3): 8 a.m.-3 p.m.

Experience Hawaii: From Sea to Land (Grades 6 – 12)

This course runs through the full four weeks of our Summer program. Students will participating in two weeks of Sailing and two weeks of Outdoor Leadership.


“There is nothing -- absolutely nothing – half so much worth doing as simply messing around in boats.” , Kenneth Grahame, Wind in the Willows

Learn to sail in the beautiful waters off the Big Island. This course will provide you with a basic understanding of the fundamentals of sailing, of handling a small sailboat on your own. We will cover the parts of a boat, the points of sail, and many other aspects of sailing such a knot tying and care of a vessel. Curriculum covered will be based upon the US Sailing program for beginning sailors. Week two will cover more advanced sailing aspects.

Outdoor Leadership

This two week class you will explore the basics of outdoor adventure philosophy and leadership. Through this course students will be introduced to the art of camping from front-country to backcountry. This adventure class will focus on teaching students all the steps of an adventure from planning and logistics to going out and doing it. All adventure environments will be safe, ethical and fun. Skills such as backcountry cooking, safe water purification methods, and how to utilize minimal impact adventure. The skills that are learned here are applicable to any environment and activity. Students will gain the confidence to create their own safe and responsible adventures. Students will be challenged mentally and physically.

Half Day Class (Periods 1 and 2): 8 a.m.-Noon

Marine Science Seminar

Earn Semester Credit

This four-hour seminar is a scientific, hands-on discovery of the unique Hawaiian marine environment. Students gain a basic understanding of Hawaiian marine biology and ecology and the fundamental role marine ecosystems play in the world as a whole. Classes include exploration through field trips, experiments, and lectures. Digital imaging and computer technology are applied to produce lab and classroom projects. Students earn a half elective credit upon successful completion of the course.

Required: Basic swimming skills, a set of snorkel gear, and enthusiasm for the sciences are required.

Open Water Scuba Certification with an Introduction to Hawai'i's Coral Reefs

Earn PADI Certification and Semester Credit

In this four-hour, 19-day class, students will earn their open water diver certification and use their underwater expertise to study Hawaiian coral reef ecology. During the first two weeks, students will complete the course and water skills necessary to complete the PADI Open Water Dive course. Following this, students will be introduced to coral reef ecology focusing on the common inhabitants of Hawai'i's coral reefs and their interactions through the use of scuba, student projects, photography, and class presentations. Safe diving practices will be emphasized throughout the course. Students will need to complete a swim test, be comfortable in the ocean, and complete a medical statement form prior to commencement of the course.

Two Hour Class Periods

Foundations in Test Prep

Grades 9-10

Foundations in Test Prep will be offered for under classmen (grades 9-10) who would like to work on mastering the skills tested on the ACT and the SAT. Best SAT instructors will guide students through lessons on English grammar, critical reading, rhetorical skills, pre-algebra, algebra and geometry. Students can practice with questions presented in both the ACT and the SAT format, gaining valuable experience as they start their test prep journey. Best SAT instructors use the most student-friendly materials, and teach using a scaffolding approach. They believe that skills are built sequentially, and that a solid grasp of the basics is necessary for long-term success.

Textbooks will be provided.

SAT and ACT Prep

Grades 11-12

Prepare for the SAT and ACT exams with tutors from Best SAT Tutorial Service. This comprehensive test prep class for upper classmen (grades 11-12) features three practice exams, 24 hours of SAT and ACT instruction, and six hours of free extra help available during evening study hall. Best SAT instructors use the most student-friendly materials, and teach using a scaffolding approach. They believe that skills are built sequentially, and that a solid grasp of the basics is necessary for long-term success.

Textbooks and supplemental materials will be provided; students required to bring a pencil and a TI 83 or TI 84 graphing calculator. Each class is limited to 10 students.

CSI and Forensics: Not Just Digging Up Bones!

Have you ever thought about being a Crime Scene Investigator? What about a Forensic Pathologist? A Ballistics Specialist? Learn about the science behind crime scene investigations! Students will explore many of these topics through case studies, films, hands-on labs, reading, guest speakers, and field trips. Topics will include evidence collection, fingerprints, DNA profiling, blood and blood spatter, drug toxicology, handwriting analysis, bite analysis, soil examination, forensic anthropology, cause of death, glass evidence, and much more! This class will help you look at science in a whole new way!

Climate Change and Sustainability

This course analyzes the science behind climate change, incorporating real-world data, collaboration, and critical thinking. Students will familiarize themselves with scientific tools used to determine ice ages of the past and global warming going into the future. Applying this knowledge, discussion will center on the crossroads of climate science and human civilization. Where are humans most vulnerable to sea level rise, increased severity of storms, and threats of prolonged drought? How can cities around the world become more resilient? Students will examine climate reports assembled by the world’s leading scientists and work together to create their own innovative ideas for sustainability in a changing climate. The course will culminate with a field trip to the Mauna Loa Observatory, a prestigious atmospheric research facility, famous for monitoring and recording atmospheric change since the 1950s.

Introduction to Virtual Reality/Augmented Reality

The Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality (VR/AR) course will introduce students to the fantastic world of VR/AR. Students will research both VR and AR to discover the differences and similarities, and the potential application of these technologies to the educational environment and other areas of society. Students will be building their own VR viewers out of recycled materials. The course will be comprised of hands-on experiential learning opportunities, research components, and presentation preparation.

Basic Web Design

The Internet is a part of our technologically advanced society. Many businesses make millions of dollars with just a website! More information is available to anyone with an Internet connection than all the books in all the libraries in Hawai‘i! The Internet works because of websites which are built using several types of coding languages. The foundational building blocks are HTML and CSS. In this course, students will learn the basics to HTML and CSS programming. Students will explore and be able to work at their own pace using The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) standard training software. Students will also research and learn about WYSIWYG web development software. Come and learn about the building blocks of the Internet and make your own website!

Extraordinary Chemistry of Ordinary Food

Students will interactively prepare different foods and learn what is happening on a molecular. Students will make predictions— for example, what happens to make bread rise? Do all flours work the same in bread and why or why not. Why do egg whites get fluffy when you beat them and why doesn’t that happen to egg yolks? Why does puff pastry have to cook at 400 degrees? What happens when you brine a piece of meat, or ferment cabbage to make sauerkraut?


In this course, students will build robots, control these robots through code and then use the robots to complete programmed functions. Teacher led introductory sessions will progress to small group, project-based efforts which will test the students' understanding and perseverance. Students will learn to think like a computer scientist, with a strong emphasis on problem solving. Additionally, collaborative skills will be developed to enhance team efforts needed to successfully compete with other groups.

The Creative Writer’s Toolbox

“I totally didn’t see that coming!”

“I was on the edge of my seat!”

“I couldn’t put it down!”

We all love a good story. But what makes a story good? What makes us keep reading, watching, or clicking “Next Episode”? In this creative writing class, we’ll learn the tips, tricks, and secrets of writing that transports and inspires us. We’ll study the elements of our favorite books, movies, and shows, and break them down into building blocks that can be found in the best storytelling. We’ll take a look at, characters, conflict, suspense, and how to keep your audience turning the page. You’ll discover how to create a main character that people will root for, how to spin a story that will keep people guessing, and how to create plot twists that will leave your readers spellbound. This class will explore the endless possibilities of creativity and equip you with the tools you need to write a thrilling story.

Ceramics: Making Meaning, Making Fun

From pinch pots to plates, along with portraits of our pets and people clay responds to our touch and technique. Student-artists will explore the tactile, responsive nature of this magical material while learning how to hand-build using techniques of coil and slab-building to create sculptural forms that are meaningful to them. Learning to throw on the wheel is challenging and also satisfying. Considering classic cultural traditions from around the world the vessel becomes one more place to access the wonder of making objects in clay. Come join us. We’ll muck about and make fun.

Endemic Hawai’i: Design Thinking and Print Making (Introductory Course)

Create your own unique limited edition print design inspired by nature, tradition and craft of the Hawaiian culture. Students will learn visualization skills, creative process documentation, stamp carving, natural dyeing and traditional printing methods inspired by the ohe kapala style. Students will observe and document inspiration for their print designs, which they will collect from excursions and visitations with local experts. Students will create exhibition quality prints and a creative process book that will be displayed at HPA’s Isaacs Art Center during the final summer exhibition.

Endemic Hawai‘i: Experience Traditional Craft (Advanced Course)

Experience making your own Hawaiian kapa, ohe kapala bamboo stamps, and other traditional Hawaiian craft. In this course, students will investigate traditional processes, working alongside fiber artist and expert Roen Hufford on her wauke and flower farm. Students will also discover and document inspirations to develop print designs through excursions and experiences around the Hawai‘i Island. Students will display their kapa designs and a creative process book at HPA’s Isaacs Art Center during the final summer exhibition. This course is for those who have experience in printmaking or those who took the Endemic Hawaiian Printmaking Course last summer.

Capture the Big Island

Dive into your passion for photography as you find inspiration amid the rolling hills of the Kohala Mountains, the crystal clear water of Hapuna Beach, and the rainbow of colors of Hawai'i Island! Under the guidance of a professional photographer, students gain a basic understanding of techniques such as angling, centering, framing and exposure. Together we’ll capture candid shots to create personal projects the students will carry with them long after their tans have faded.

Required: To participate in this class students must have their own digital camera and USB cable or memory card reader.


In Glee, students learn how to sing lead and background vocals using popular music by contemporary artists. The class focuses on techniques to improve and strengthen student’s singing voices, as well as some necessary music skills that every singer needs. This course also includes instruction in stage presence and choral choreography.

Musical Theater Performance

Back by popular demand -The 20 Minute Musical! Last summer’s mini production of Annie was a blast for the performers and a treat for our end of summer talent show audience. In this class we will choose a popular musical based on the number of students we have. We will select highlights from that musical creating a fun, fast paced performance that we will rehearse and prepare for our final performance night. As we rehearse we will be working on our improv, acting, singing, and choreography skills. You don’t need to have experience performing to enjoy this class. If you’ve never been on stage before, this class is a perfect opportunity to discover and explore this exciting art from, and if you’re already a pro we need your awesome skills to make our show amazing!



Cost: Included with boarding tuition, day students: $225

The intramural sports program promotes healthy competition, physical fitness, sportsmanship, and fun. The program consists of a rotating schedule that might include softball, basketball, volleyball, swimming, soccer, ultimate Frisbee, or a number of other field activities and sports.

Horseback Riding

Cost: Day and boarding students $600

In the Summer@HPA Horseback Riding course students will learn proper grooming and tacking procedures and will gain a working knowledge of aides and mechanics involved when riding English. Instruction in equitation, trail riding, horse care, and maintenance is stressed.

Tennis Instruction

Cost: Day and boarding students $450

Summer@HPA Tennis course is designed to accommodate all players’ abilities. Students will become privy to the latest tennis research and learn how physical laws and court dimensions dictate FUNdamentals. Students will have the option of having their essential strokes filmed in high speed. Come learn, laugh and improve at the Rutgers Tennis Center Summer@HPA Tennis Program.

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