Kōina Leo: Leading Learners in Ōlelo Hawai’i Using the Silent Way Methodology


Political activists, university faculty, and kumu hula have become more and more engaged in teaching ‘ōlelo Hawai’i (Hawaiian language) in efforts to revitalize an indigenous language that was close to extinction.  This action research study examine the roles of leaders of ‘ōlelo Hawai’i instruction and the impact of direct instruction on learners, through the use of The Silent Way methodology (Gattegno, 2010; Gattegno, 1972; Gattegno, 1963) in both face to face and online teaching and learning.  Research objectives were (1) examination of leadership strategies for attraction and retention of ōlelo Hawai’i instruction; (2) exploration of the impact on leaders of The Silent Way methodology; and (3) exploration of the impact on learners of The Silent Way methodology in face to face and online learning.  This study addresses a gap in the current literature regarding the use of The Silent Way methodology in teaching and learning ōlelo Hawai’i.  Additionally, the resurgence and revitalizaiton of ōlelo Hawai’i was explored through participant observation, individual interviews, and researcher field notes to explore the changing roles of leaders and learners of ‘ōlelo Hawai’i language instruction.  Results of this study revealed four distinct themes including the importance of leader modeling and the value of collective learning experiences. 


Keywords: leaders, Hawaiian language, Hawaiian culture, The Silent Way, participatory action research

This publication has been peer reviewed.
Publication Type: 
Journal Article
Schumacher, J.A. & Pata, Cody Pueo
Year of Publication: 
Journal, Book, Magazine or Other Publication Title: 
First Nations Journal
Publication Language: 
Boyer's Domain: 

Additional content will be provided upon request.