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Published by Le Jardin Academy, 2018-10-18 21:28:33

LJA 2017-18 Annual Report

LJA Annual Report 2018, v12

Adventures at



K ailey Suezaki ’19 came to Le Jardin
in grade 7 and is now a senior. She
has developed a passion for history
and has been particularly focused on
human rights and social justice during
her time at LJA. Kailey will explore options in
graphic design as well as human rights law as
she navigates her future, but for now she can be
found playing beach volleyball in her spare time.


ontributing writer Sidney Grimsley ’19

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read, write creatively, and explore the beach.


W ith a year under her belt as an LJA student and an entire summer of
waiting, Amelia felt ready to take on a new adventure as a Student
Ambassador. Backpack in tow, breakfast in her belly, and her big
brother Alex accompanying her in the backseat, she was ready for
the first day of school. Her first item of business was to head straight
to Mrs. Souza’s office to put in her request to be a Student Ambassador.

As she always does, Mrs. Souza greeted Amelia with a hug and a smile. “It’s
so nice to see you, Amelia, I hope you enjoyed your summer,” said Mrs. Souza.
“Are you here to volunteer to be a Student Ambassador?”

Amelia couldn’t contain her excitement and quickly replied, “Yes, I am! I am
confident that I can do a good job greeting visitors, giving tours, and anything
else I can help with.”

Mrs. Souza agreed that she would make an excellent Student Ambassador and
shared with Amelia the list of volunteer opportunities that she could help with
such as participating in panel discussions at Coffee with the Principal, Bulldog
for the Day student shadowing, giving tours to families at Open House, and so
much more. Amelia beamed with excitement as Mrs. Souza welcomed her to
the team and handed her an official Student Ambassador T-shirt.



A melia barely had a chance to greet her friends before her class
headed to the gym to attend the opening assembly of the school
year. Outside, the new kindergartners paired up with their senior
buddies to enter the gym; Amelia thought it was so cute that the
big kids introduced the youngest kids to the school with this
tradition to kick off the new school year.

Head of School Mr. Condon greeted everyone with a big “Aloha” and the
gym nearly shook with a resounding “ALOHA” that was returned from all
the students and faculty.

Everyone settled quickly and Mr. Condon asked, “Guess where I went this

Photos of Mr. Condon and Alex’s friends from water polo, Grant and Kate,
in a classroom filled with young kids popped up on the big screen, as he
shared the story of his trip to Ganap Village in the Kalahari Desert of South
Africa where they taught English to village children.


“ O ur students worked very hard everyday as teachers, and
together we learned a lot about students in other parts of the
world. We also got to see some really interesting and unique
things, like a lion sanctuary. I hope many more LJA students
will take advantage of attending a service project like this,” Mr.
Condon said.

Amelia listened, then finally whispered excitedly to her friend Hayden,
“Hey, when we’re in high school, let’s remember to sign up for this! I would
love to meet kids in Africa!”

The school year got off to a good start for Amelia. She was especially
looking forward to starting with the Student Ambassadors, so that she
could provide tours for visiting students and share about her favorite after-
school activity, the Geek Girls, a computer coding and programming club.
The club was started by her friend Norah because she wanted to create
a club to increase interest in science and robotics for girls. They also got
to work with senior Kaya, making substitution ciphers to learn about




T hat reminded Amelia of another story she could share with
visiting students. At the robotics tournament on campus last
week, Amelia met Dena, a middle school student who shared with
her that she applied for a Hawaii Youth Sustainability Grant. It
was her idea based on the Middle School FIRST Lego League
(FLL) challenge to create a water conservation project.

Dena decided she wanted to resolve a big problem for the marsh near the
school - the rain was moving trash and other contaminating pollutants
downhill to neighboring Kawai Nui Marsh. The grant could provide funds
to support the project. This inspired Amelia to somehow help find ways
to give back to her community and to join FLL, to learn to apply science,
technology, engineering, and math concepts (STEM) - with a big dose of
imagination - to solve problems.


O n the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, Amelia and Alex arrived to
school and noticed something different. Music was playing and
there were banners everywhere; lots of parent volunteers and
kids were waving pom poms in the loop. As the cars stopped at
the drop off, parents handed donation envelopes to volunteers
through their car windows. Amelia noticed a big banner saying ‘LJA Giving
Day Challenge’ and saw that her friend Molly was on the sidewalk cheering,
pom poms high overhead.

“Hi Amelia, will you and your family please make a gift to the school today?
It’s Giving Tuesday and we’re asking everyone to participate. Every gift
makes a difference!”

Amelia immediately turned back to the car, “Hey Mom, can I please have
my allowance now to contribute to the school’s Annual Fund today? It’s a
special day and I want to give too!” Amelia was proud to hand a 10 dollar
bill to Carsen and Blake.

Later during afternoon pickup, Amelia joined Ella and her friends to ask
other families to participate in Giving Day. Together they made up a cheer
to share that the school relies on generosity to make sure all the wonderful


programs and teaching that it is known for can be provided. Amelia was
proud to share her feelings about the many good things she experiences
every day at LJA, and families were glad to contribute. Amelia felt really
good about giving her allowance, as well as her time, to help the school.



I t was a beautiful sunny Saturday and Alex came bounding into the

“Can we head up to Turtle Bay to watch the LJA surf team compete
today? It’s going to be so cool, and I think I might want to join the

It didn’t take long for Alex and his mom to gather a picnic. Dad and Amelia
grabbed beach towels and an umbrella, and they were off for the day. They
arrived just in time to see the LJA team hit the water and paddle out to the
break. The team did great! Alex headed over to congratulate the surfers and
was approached by Kana’i, the club captain.

“Hey Alex, join us at this week’s practice! You’ll love it. This team has meant
so much to me. And I must admit, it has really disciplined me to focus on my
schoolwork,” said Kana’i.

Davin shouted over, “Yeah, and somehow he had time to win the league’s
bodyboarding division championship! Come out this week, Alex!”


A lex and his parents agreed that joining the surf club would be a
great idea, and the whole family went home with new LJA surf
club shirts. Amelia was a teeny bit envious that she’d have to
wait a few more years to join the surf club, but she was already
very busy with her many activities. In addition to volunteering as
Student Ambassador, she was also a Junior Safety Patrol (JSP) officer and
joined the ukulele club .

Amelia was having a great time at school and was excited for a special field
trip. In the classroom, they had been researching local animal behaviors,
their pathways and habitats, and today they would explore the Kawai Nui
Marsh with high school seniors. Amelia loved the lush green marsh, and
was so happy to play among the critters. It was a chance to see birds and
other wildlife up close, even some ducks!




A melia was so happy to live in beautiful Kailua, and being in
nature made everything she learned in her classroom and read
in books feel real and alive. She thought how very lucky she
was that her school took care of the marsh and that she and her
friends experienced it all first-hand. Her teacher reminded her that
by working together with others, they provided service, but also learned
a lot while making a valuable contribution to their community. Amelia
thought she might like to think about that some more later in the evening,
and decided she’d share news of her adventure during the Coffee with the
Principal panel discussion she and a few other Student Ambassadors would
be participating in next week. For now, she thought it best to clean off some
of the day’s mud.


A rt is one of Amelia’s favorite subjects. She loved exploring colors
and shapes and interesting materials to create something that
was her very own. And to get messy! So she counted the days
for the annual ArtsFest to arrive. She and her family arrived on
campus on a breezy May Saturday to find the great lawn filled with
families picnicking and enjoying the music.

Amelia and her mom set the picnic blanket near the Kerr Lookout where
they had a good view of the musicians and enjoyed their lunch. But Amelia
couldn’t wait a second longer and was off and running to a tent to create a
string art masterpiece. The whole afternoon was fun and lively and filled
with friends, art, and music. Amelia’swfiallvaolrwitaeypserrefomremmebr ewrahseHr fiariveo, rwitheo
gpreardfouramteedr, fwrohmo jLuJsAt hianp2p0e0n8e.dSthoebpelayneLdJhAerAulpubmenait. uHkiurilel(ePraetgrigcaiae Tmaucsoinc
a’0n8d) pAemrfeolrima aenddhherersifgrineantdusreduankcueledle...raengdgadeanmcuesdic...aannddAdmaneclieada. nd her
friends danced ...and danced...and danced.


M onday morning was here already, and the school year was
nearing an end. Amelia, Sydni, and Maya gathered just before
class. They were excited because they saw Mr. Gaines setting
up what looked like a puppet theatre stage. He explained
that in 7th grade they would write short muppet show skits
centered around the Tribes agreements and perform them for kindergarten
and first grade students!


As they headed to lunch, Amelia asked Maya, “What do you think the Big
Island field trip will be like?”
Maya was quick to say, “It’s going to be great! It’ll be one more story for you
to share as a Student Ambassador.”
“You’re right,” Amelia said. “You should sign up as a Student Ambassador!”
“Yeah I should, that’ll be fun,” said Maya. “Húi tóu jiàn!”
“That means ‘see you later,’ right?” said Amelia.
“Yes, indeed,” said Hayden.
“Húi tóu jiàn Hayden,” said Amelia as she skipped away to her place in the
lunch line.



W ith nearly 800 students from preschool to grade 12, Le
Jardin Academy is a place for learning that has a strong
sense of community, where everyone is treated like family,
and opportunities stretch as far as a student’s imagination.
Tucked away on a lush 24-acre parcel in Kailua overlooking Windward
Oahu, the location sets the tone for active, healthy learning.
Students are encouraged to be curious and lead balanced lives.
They are empowered to explore, appreciate the arts, and care for the
environment. This balanced approach to learning is cultivated from
the school’s accreditation as an International Baccalaureate (IB) World
School. The IB framework of learning encourages students to embrace
and understand the connections between traditional subjects and the
real world, as well as to become critical and reflective thinkers. The
academic curriculum is designed to prepare students for the rigor of
universities and colleges, as well as for the opportunities and demands
of life in an increasingly globalized 21st century. Le Jardin Academy is
proud to be an internationally-minded school that empowers students
to be upstanding global citizens.


Dear members of Le Jardin Academy ohana,

We hope that you enjoyed the second book in the
‘ATdhveeAndtuvreenstuatreLsJaAt’LsJerAie’ sefreiaetsufreiantgurthinegmthaenymany
wonderful things happening in our community
through the perspective of character Amelia.

Last year, we engaged the creative talents of one
of our students to illustrate the book. This year, we
were fortunate to have two student contributors.
Thank you to high school students Kailey Suezaki ’19 and Sidney Grimsley ’19.
Their contributions capture why LJA is such an engaging place to learn and
grow, and highlights the many opportunities offered to our students.

As the adventures of Amelia continue, so too will the learning adventures of
our students, faculty and staff. We look forward to continuing to share that
adventure with you!


D.J. Condon
Head of School


Globally oriented with a strong sense of community,
Le Jardin Academy equips students to achieve individual excellence,
develop sound character, and positively impact the world.


917 Kalanianaole Highway
Kailua, HI 96734

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