Honoka‘a P-3

Honoka‘a P-3 works with only two elementary schools because the team wanted to develop deeper relationships with administrators, teachers, and other service workers. 

Participating Schools and Early Learning Programs

  • Honokaa Complex (2):
    • Honoka‘a Elementary School
    • Waimea Elementary School


Demo Site Focus

Hawai‘i Island Early Childhood Conference

Every year since 2008, a group of colleagues from the Baby STEPS to Stronger Big Island Families initiative partnership has collaborated to plan and conduct the Annual Hawai‘i Island Early Childhood Conference. Since then, six successful conferences have been held. The two-day conference has included keynote speeches from state and national Pre-K to 3 experts (such as national P-3 specialist Kristie Kauerz, and Terry Lock, University of Hawai‘i's College of Education's Early Childhood Coordinator) and several breakout sessions. The annual conference is structured to meet the training needs of our island’s early childhood practitioners. The conference is open to the public, but participants generally include practitioners from all four identified early childhood settings – center-based programs, family child care programs, home visit programs and family-child interaction learning programs. 

Baby Steps to Literacy Program

Baby Steps to Literacy is a rotational book bag-lending program. Children borrow bags containing 3 – 4 age appropriate books and take them home to share with family members. When they finish the books, they return the bag and borrow another one with another set of books. Many families in the area do not have books in their homes, and this program provides books for children to practice reading, promotes the practice of parents reading to their children, and helps build a love of reading.

Data Utilization and Teacher Training

Baby STEPS' Curriculum Specialist attends Kindergarten articulation meetings and provides training as needed. Teachers also receive one-on-one mentoring from the P-3 Curriculum Specialist to address particular challenges.

Parent Engagement

Three play-and-learn groups are conducted each week in this demonstration site - two in Waimea and one in Honoka‘a. The groups are a great way to provide social and learning opportunities for the children, networking for the parents, and a positive connection to the schools for all.

Key Partners

Waimea Elementary School

Honoka‘a Elementary School

West Hawai‘i District Complex Area Superintendent, HIDOE

Small World Preschool

Seagull Schools

Baby STEPS Council


Online Resources