Grade 1

Grade 1

Philosophy

In Momilani Elementary School, we have three first grade classes. One classroom is a “singleton” class made up of one class and one teacher while another classroom is a double classroom with an open layout made up of two classes and two teachers who team-teach throughout the day.

We work very closely as a grade level, planning our curriculum together. We focus on the development of independent thinkers and learners who can take care of and respect themselves, each other and their school/community. We encourage and try to instill a sense of responsibility, self-control and good decision-making throughout the school year.

Throughout the school year we focus on self, family, community, general learner outcomes (GLOs), and formative five (grit, empathy, self-control, integrity, embracing diversity). We take quarterly field trips to make deeper connections and enhance learning in the first grade curriculum. The students often collaborate within first grade working on project based learning, performing for Grandparent’s Day, and drama.

We work hand-in-hand with parents and families, always encouraging open communication and involvement. We believe that if we work together – child, parents, families, teachers, school – as “partners in education,” every child can have a positive and successful experience here at Momilani Elementary. We love being first teachers!!!

Students on a field trip to the pond feeding fish
Students working on a science project
Students at Snow Play Day playing on the snow
Family at Grandparents Day Luncheon enjoying lunch

Meet the Team

Mrs. Carol Hasegawa-McOuat

Mrs. Carol Hasegawa-McOuat

I have been at Momilani Elementary School since 2006. I have experience teaching 4th grade, 1st grade, technology to K-2, and 2nd grade. Before teaching at Momilani, I was in Japan for 2 years on the JET program and taught preschool to adults how to speak/write in English. I have a bachelor's degree in Elementary Education with an emphasis in Early Childhood and a master's degree in Educational Technology from University of Hawaii at Manoa.

Teaching brings me so much joy especially when I see students' eyes light up when they are able to understand the standard I am trying to teach them. Students are what drives me to do my best, their thirst for knowledge makes me want to teach more, I know that we can learn from each other. I believe that every student, no matter how young or old, can learn to be independent if you let him or her. My students will always hear me say, "Try your best."

Mrs. Karen Hirata

Mrs. Karen Hirata

Mrs. Karen Hirata received her Bachelor’s of Education degree and Professional Diploma from the University of Hawaii at Manoa. She taught first and second grades at Kaunakakai Elementary on Molokai and first grade at Kamaile Elementary School. Mrs. Hirata has 25+ years of teaching experience. She has been teaching at Momilani Elementary since 1991. Mrs. Hirata taught kindergarten and second grades and is presently a first grade teacher. Mrs. Hirata enjoys spending time with her family and playing with her dog.

Mrs. Kelly Lee

Mrs. Kelly Lee grew up in Southern California and earned both her Bachelor's Degree and teaching credential at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She started her teaching career in the Bay Area where she taught both 2nd and 3rd grade for 5 years. Mrs. Lee moved to Hawaii in 2020, and continued to tutor and build confidence in her previous students virtually. She is looking forward to teaching 1st grade at Momilani Elementary and creating a space for students to grow as learners, learn to take risks, and become kind and compassionate humans who strive to be the best they can be.

Mrs. Lee loves sharing her passion for ocean conservation with her students. When she is not at school, you can almost always find her at the beach. She enjoys snorkeling, paddling, and spending time with friends and family.