The Perceptions of Hawaiian Creole in Education, Research Paper Example
Words: 3259Research Paper
The perceptions of the Hawaiian Creole language in educational circles is one that is ignorant, poor English and of people that come from poverty-stricken areas. This Hawaiian language has undergone many different assimilations trying to either change, eliminate or remove the Hawaii Creole language. In the 1800, the missionary’s believe it to be an essential priority to translate the Christianity to Hawaiian Creole English (HCE) to spread the gospel (Drager 2). The missionaries went on a deliberate social mission to transform the perceived poverty language from Hawaiian Creole to language of English. The missionaries perceptions was these Hawaiian people would not be able to progress with the confusing language Hawaiian Creole. The missionary’s perception about Hawaiians was Hawaiian people would not have economic success unless they adapted to the American English language. The French has issues with the Hawaiian language because they perceive the Hawaiian Creole dialect as a destruction of the French language. This is not the first time in history that the Hawaiian language has survive censorship, lack of respect or banning by the government.
The government banned Hawaiian language in the 1820s, in an attempt to eradicate the language. However, the Hawaii poetry industry that kept the Hawaiian creole language alive. The traveling artists, entertainers, singers, and dancers continued to practice the Hawaiian Creole language (Ho’omanawanui, Ku’ualoha 1). The Hawaiian people have shown resilience over the many decades preserving the cultural rights of the Pidgin language. The Hawaii people currently have challenges to address some of the negative perceptions by the Hawaii Department of Education. This paper will analyze the perceptions in about Hawaii Creole English (HCE) in the educational arena and the Hawaiian Department of Education. The paper will address the perceptions of the teachers delivering the curriculum to the Hawaiian children.
Hawaiian Educational History
In the 1700 century, there has been a wide variety of languages that has inhabited the Hawaiian Islands. As a result, the Pidgin language was born which has been called several names such as the Hawaiian Creole (HC), Hawaiian Creole English (HCE), or Hawaiian English Creole (HEC). The Pidgin is a set of different languages merged such as Hawaiian, Cantonese, Portuguese, and Japanese (Hargrove, Sakoda, & Siegel 1). The Hawaiian Islands was the gateway to trading and sugar cane commodities that brought the Europeans in the 1778. This was the arrival of Captain James Cook, which quickly evolved into the international port for ships, involved in trading and whaling (Hawaii History 1). The melting pot of cultures began the Pidgin language because laborers were transported from Spain, Puerto Rico, Portugal, China, and Korea. The sugar cane industry contributed to the foundation of the Pidgin language because they had some many nationalities working the plantations they need a common language. The perception that the Japanese, Spaniards, or Portuguese people had the most people that migrated to the Hawaiian Island. This perception is not correct because the Filipinos has the most people migrate to Hawaii in the 1900s that almost 1/3 of the entire population migrated to Hawaii including over 12,000 people from the Cebuano locations (Mojares 79). The perception was that many other countries such as Spain, Korean, Japan, Portugal and Switzerland has more people that migrated to the Hawaii in the 1900s.
The missionaries from New England were influential in developing the Hawaiian language into the written form that enables the Hawaiian population to read and write in their own native language. In the 1831, there were over 53,000 children enrolled in schools that were established by the Puritans missionaries (Cheeseman 2). These are some the educational contributions of the Hawaiian people that date back to the days of tribes led by war chiefs. The warrior chief’s great granddaughter of Kamehameha I was concerned with ensuring that Hawaiians would always have a good education and keeping the culture alive. The granddaughter Bernice Pauahi Bishop willed the entire estate dedicated to educating Hawaiian Children (Cheeseman 1). The Bishop left over nine percent of the total acreage to the new Kamehamha Schools. This is an historical event that a war chiefs daughter committed her life and wealth to the continue the education of Hawaiian children to keep Hawaii Creole relevant.
The Hawaiian educational system in 1830 was trying to find their culture identity while experiencing a dramatic educational shift to expand the curriculum to address the multicultural-ethnic population (Cheeseman 1). The educational landscape has always been a cultural challenge to find acceptance of the HCE influence in the classroom and in the community.
Hawaiian Educational Perceptions
The Hawaiian educational system has tried to remove the Hawaiian Creole from the schools, while attaching the perception that Hawaiian Creole represents poverty and ignorance. The perception in the Hawaiian educational arena is students that learn the Hawaii Creole will be at a disadvantage because of their different dialect that does not allow them to compete in the English world. However, there are some educators that believe ensuring each student is literate with a positive perceptions of self can succeed academically (Tamura 5). The Hawaii Educators are not alone with disdain for the Pidgin language because the French people despised the Pidgin language because it destroys the French language. According to Nubla(2004), the creole language is a constantly evolving cultural that is regulated in Hawaii education because its negative perceptions while the French despised creole because they believe creole lowers the quality of the French language. The perceptions for the foreigners suggest they see the Hawaiian Creole as a gibberish language derived from people with a poverty background. These same feeling is apparent in the educational community because they have been taught that the Hawaiian Creole is bad influence.
Hawaii Board of Education
The Board of Education in Hawaii has blamed the utilized of Pidgin as the primary reason the Hawaii students score poorly on standardized testing. The State Board of Education has some much contempt for the Hawaiian Creole that they attempted to ban the Hawaiian Creole from the classroom (Tamura 4). The perceptions of Hawaiian Creole among the Hawaiian educators from disdain to a matter of cultural pride. The Hawaiian Creole language, which is known as Pidgin to the Hawaiian people has a rich historical background dating back to the 19th century. The Hawaiian Creole language has been significant in historical in recording the Bible. In the 19th Century, religious missionaries were supposed to teach converts to read the Bible. However, they adopted a writing system with a twelve-word alphabet that has Hawaiian origins (Schweitzer 2). However, the perception that all people that speak Hawaiian Creole are poverty-stricken and it has no place in the Hawaiian schools. The Hawaiian Board of Education perceives the HCE as a step back in history for the Hawaiian people. The educational community is not all malicious about the HCE curriculum inclusion in schools; however, they feel the Hawaiian children will have a better chance in the educational and business platforms they must succeed in English as well. The Hawaiian educational system has tried many times to prevent the HCE language from being used in the Hawaiian schools, however, the natives of the Hawaiian fought to keep the language in the school system. However, the Hawaiian Department of Education has found new programs to support the children along with HCE programs, specialized programs, and College Readiness programs (Hawaiian Public Schools, 2015).
Hawaiian Public Schools
There are some major changes happening to the Hawaiian Educational system that addresses the biases of the standardized testing. They have created a smarter balanced assessment that addresses all the necessary core areas such as Math, English, Sciences, and Writing. However, they have implemented models based on the best inclusion of English and HCE in the curriculums to ensure the testing and standardization is balanced. The Hawaiian Public Schools has made some tremendous improvements and milestones that include the participation and inclusion of the parents. The Hawaiian Public school promotes the teachers meeting with the parents to ensure they are provide a fully academic program for the children in the school and in the home. The teachers are getting the additional training concerning the HCE curriculums and providing them with more education concerning the Hawaiian culture integration. (Hawaii State Department of Education 2).
The Hawaiian Department of Education has implemented 21st Century Community Centers that are equipped to handle students that are making the transition to learning English along with HCE curriculum inputs. The programs include special needs for those children that are having trouble adapting to the stringent requirements to succeed but incorporation all aspects of the Hawaiian culture and linguistics. There are many authors, educators, parents and the community that have begun to think about the social and emotional state of the children that are learning about their culture and HCE language. The Community Children’s Councils is a supporting organization that provides special needs, English or HCE needs that is led by education professional and parents. (Hawaii State Department of Education 2). The Department’s programs are supported by the Federal government to ensure that all children with disabilities are helped. The Hawaiian children already have barriers because of the perceptions of the HCE, however Federal laws like the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act and Section 504/Subpart D of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 is benefiting Hawaiian children(Hawaii State Department of Education 1).
The Hawaiian Public School system is working in conjunction with the Department of Education, the local school boards, and the State Educational Programs Counsels that represent the teachers, parents, and educators. The Hawaiian State Department of Education is recognized as the single public education system in the United States.
Hawaiian Test Scores
There is some supporting reason for concern by the Hawaiian Board of Education concerning the academic performance of the students that adapting to Hawaiian Creole and Standard English. The Hawaiian Test scores are one of the components to measure the Hawaiian children capabilities in relation to the other children globally. The globally ranking does not tell the whole story about the plight of education in Hawaii but it is a measuring stick to see where Hawaiian children are passing and failing and why.
The Hawaiian Test Scores has been ranked as some the lowest globally. A new study was implemented by the George W. Bush institute concerning the measurement of Hawaii against other states and continents. The reading scores were at a low 39% and the math scores were even lower at 29 %( Zimmerman 1). The comparisons are alarming concerning the difference in scores from United States, Canada, Singapore, and Switzerland. The scores indicated that there might be some validity to the Hawaii Board of Education concerns about the children of Hawaii not performing and not competing academically globally because of the HCE language.
The George Bush Institute wanted to share the intention was not to shine the spotlight on how poorly the Hawaiian children performed but to measure the United States urban areas against global countries. The article by Zimmerman (2011) was not bias but they looked at the overall picture of the test scores from all the wealthiest and top suburban areas in the United States. The results indicated that their test scores were 48% lower than the students from other continents were. The report found that the international countries students are outperforming our students in Hawaii but in mainstream America as well. This means the Hawaiian students perceived Hawaiian Creole is not the problem but the American level of academic excellence not performing. The best schools in the United States are behind countries that live with poverty-stricken lands and they are still outperforming the United States.
Educational Perceptions Pidgin
The perception by the some educators that the use of Pidgin does not allow the student to learn English writing and reading. In addition, the Pidgin language will be seen as unintelligent language that does not allow the children to prosper (Da Pidgin 35). The educators called Hawaiian Creole, the Hawaiian Pidgin English which was a mixture of gibberish from some many cultural exposures. The leader of the educational meeting gave the teachers a good education on Hawaiian Creole. The leader stated, the Hawaiian Creole is a language that was spoken by Hawaiian people that were born on a Hawaiian island including the mainland (Thompson 1). The Hawai‘ian Creole language flourished during the 1800 during the sugar and pineapple plantations need a single language because the workers were from Hawaii, Portugal, Korea, Japan, Cantonese and Spain. The workers learned Hawaiian Creole while mixing some of their own linguistically backgrounds (Thompson 2).
This was an era of an educational contribution to the Hawaiian Creole language. The primary language in the 19thand 20th century was Hawaiian Creole especially in the urban communities that grew from the plantations. The public schools taught Hawaiian Creole as the primary and preferred language while the foreigners replaced their own language with Hawaiian Creole (Da Pidgin Coup 5). In the 1920s, educational community believe the pidgin language was a problem because they spent most of their teaching time translating, correcting or pushing the English on the young children. The broken-English was disallowed by many teachers because they native tongue was not recognized as an academically acceptable language. The educators and the new generation believed the old dialect had dominate the island influencing many other cultures to adapt to the Pidgin. The perception that the natives and educators were trying to avoid was Hawaiians were ignorant, poverty-stricken, and poor language that would only set the Hawaiian people back years. The educational community found that the English speaking teachers or people first perception is the children were failing the standardized test because of Pidgin.
The English speaking population in the 1920 refused to speak the Pidgin because of the difficulty of picking up the diverse gibberish dialect. The Hawaiian island receives an influx of people from all over the world in the 1920s that believe the Pidgin to be a poverty language made up of unintelligible. Hawaiian Creole or Hawaiian Creole English (HCE) is traditionally called “Pidgin” in Hawaii. In education, they believe that any language model must have the foundation on its potential to utilize that Pidgin language in academia. However, the educational teachers do not understand the social, physiological and culture importance of pidgin (Nichols 3). The educators need to understand the linguistics significance of pidgin and creole while creating curriculums that are integrated between Standard English pidgins. The students need the support in appreciating their heritage and not be ashamed or chastised for speaking pidgin. Many educators do not believe HCE has a place in education, however the Hawaiian Creole English (HCE) reflects the rich heritage and culture that is mixed with multiple linguistic and culture backgrounds.
The perceptions are clear about Pidgin based on a survey taken at a conference on November 2010. The educational meeting was sponsored by the Hawaii Community Children Council (HCCC). This HCCC council is responsible for assisting the community and educators the importance of HCE and how much they did not understand about HCE. The primary goal was to break down the educational barriers and stigmas about HCE. A brief survey was given to the educators approximately 10 and the first question asked” Is HCE a language or a dialect. The majority of the responses were HCE is both a language and a dialect. The author went to state that how can we teach and integrate HCE when educators and the community do not understand HCE (Carey 2). The surveys clearly showed a disconnect between what the teachers have been informed about HCE and what teachers skills were most important when teachers children while they learn English as well. The HCCC counsel recognizes the different perceptions that were hurting not just the children but affecting the parents, the teachers, and the community in a negative way. The HCCC wanted to bring certain factors to the educators that would be important in teaching children. The children have a language that is only spoken in the home, they have an acceptable Pidgin that is spoken only in the playground, and they have a language they must learn in school. There has been too much emphasis on the effects and impacts of the school system and the teacher’s ability to adapt to the HCE. However, the HCCC believes the focus needs to remain on the children and which curriculums is the best learning environment for them.
Teachers Lack of Understanding
The teachers are at a disadvantage because they receive information that does not have any supporting documentation to the perceptions. The teachers have the understanding that HCE is an inferior language that has no place in the competing in the real world. The assumption is false because they are many other countries that have a plethora of languages that merged creating an acceptable educational format that was effective for everyone in the regions. This is evidence that such Pidgin language have successfully adapted to the needs of the population. There is proof that the Pidgin language can be incorporated into the mainstream of Hawaii because Australia has successfully integrate the home language into music, literature, and writing. Australia who has a diverse range of dialects successfully implemented Standard English and Pidgin into the classroom (Da Pidgin 35). There are organizations that are currently bridging these gaps with providing financial and community support to ensure the teachers and the community collaborates. The Hawaiian History Education is recognized as a council that collaborates with the educational community, academic facilities, and teachers about the necessary literacy of Hawaiian children (History Education Hawaii 1).
The community and the parents have acknowledge the need for supporting groups to help the educators understand the HCE plight. The teachers do not think about the adjust for the Hawaiian children that have to learn two languages. The amount of pressure from the educational groups, the community, the parents, the grandparents, and Hawaiian School Board on which language is appropriate. The classroom has one set of rules for diction, English, and certain rules for Hawaiian Creole English (HCE). The children have to overcome a culture stigma along with a family stigma concerning HCE. The authors Yip and Matthews (2007) “The Bilingual Child” discuss the significance of the educational system approaching the learning from a psychological aspect (Yip & Matthews 20).
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