Kula kamaliʻi is how we say pre-school in Hawaiian. Kula means “school,” and kamaliʻi means “children.” Although it literally means small child, kamaliʻi is a word used only in plural form. Remember, in Hawaiian the modifier follows the noun.
Our Hawaiian word for today is koʻo for “support.” Koʻo has many meanings and many uses, but most commonly is used to describe a brace or a prop, a helper, something used to help support something else – even a cane become a koʻo koʻo.
Wela means hot. You'll hear both wela (well-a) or wela (vel-a) as correct pronunciations, depending on the sound it follows. Wela means hot, burned, heat, temperature, but can also mean “lust” or “passion” or “feeling lust.” Wela wela is “doubly hot.”
On the mainland, folks believe that if the groundhog comes out on February 2 and sees his shadow, there will be six more weeks of winter. Our Hawaiian word for today is aka, for shadow. You'll see more shadows than groundhogs in Hawaiʻi!
Huakaʻi is Hawaiian for trip, voyage, journey, mission, procession, even a parade. It doesn't have to be a long voyage or flight. A trip to Maui is a huakaʻi, just as a trip to Japan is a huakaʻi. Next time you plan a trip, call it a huakaʻi.
Hiapo means first born. It is used often in Hawaiian to describe the eldest child, the first born. Like many cultures, there is a special significance attached to being the first born, or hiapo, in a Hawaiian family.
Our Hawaiian Word of the Day is mana. Mana means “supernatural, or divine power, miraculous power, authority.” We often talk about people who have special mana, or powers. A leo mana is a voice of authority that is obeyed.
Almost everyone knows that a doorway is a puka. But how do you say door? Try pani puka. Pani puka is the thing that closes, blocks, or covers an opening. Puka is the doorway, ke pani puka is the door itself.
Most people know the ipu is a musical instrument made out of a gourd. But ipu is a general word for any type of container such as a dish, mug, calabash, pot, cup, bowl, basin, or even a utensil. Ipu is a very handy word to know.