PODCAST: Hawaii teacher puts fun spin on learning ... by making music videos!

Carissa Kano
Carissa Kano(Maemae School Media Club/YouTube)
Published: Jul. 20, 2022 at 11:01 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Carissa Kano always knew that she wanted to be a teacher. She said that she even dressed up as a teacher for Halloween when she was in kindergarten.

Her dreams came true: She is now a teacher at Maemae Elementary School.

In March 2020, Kano needed a way to keep her students’ attention while they were forced to take on virtual learning.

Using costumes and singing, she put on a show for her students — under the impression that the lockdown was only going to last two weeks.

“I do believe in order to create a fun and safe learning atmosphere for our kids, you sort of have to create that by being able to laugh at yourself and laugh with them too,” Kano said.

She said that her students would wait by their computers every day in anticipation of what character Kano would be dressed as.

In 2021, Kano used her talents to make a video called “Just Choose Love” with over 80 Maemae Elementary School faculty and staff. The song was a twist on the popular K-Pop song, “Boy With Luv,” and took four weeks to recreate.

“We made a music video on love and kindness as kind of a collective community response to give our families since people weren’t allowed on campus,” Kano said.

Her latest video, “That’s What We Like,” is a video explaining to her students the basics of having to do things in life that they might not like.

“They love being part of something fun. They love having that pride of like, this is our class, this is our teacher. We’re doing this together,” said Kano, who also ran for Miss Hawaii in 2018.

In the latest episode of Hawaii News Now’s podcast Island Beat, Billy V chats with Kano about her love for teaching with engaging music videos and also how her time in the Miss Hawaii pageant helped her with her teaching career.

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