I first started volunteering teaching watercolor to keiki 7-11years old at Palama Settlement shortly after I moved back home from Sweden in 2014. I enjoyed seeing their faces light up with discovery when they saw color spread across the page or their focus and concentration when they were engrossed in their picture making. When Palama Settlement got a grant for kūpuna to start an art program, I was excited to get to try out my teaching methods on this group of students. I had taught adults while at the Volvo Groupʻs R&D consultancy Vtech and my last assignment with Volvo Trucks developing the Volvo Production System for Manufacturing and Service.
When COVID19 hit the world, it shut down everything including the kūpuna art classes I was teaching. I asked Palama leadership to allow me to continue with those who were willing to try and learn together to go online. We were down a month in February, but up again and homebound kūpuna were able to take beginning and advanced watercolor as well as drawing and art appreciation classes during the past 2 years. Today we are back on campus but also offer online classes.
I believe children should spend as little time as possible online but for kūpuna, this could be quite useful and healthy for them to get stimulus from challenging their creativity and learning new skills and retain some socialization even if they canʻt make it to campus.
I will be manning a table for people to try watercolor and there will be an informational table showing samples of the artwork done by students free and open to the public 10-2pm