BRAXTON ADAMS (right) and Adrianna Burr dance the hula during an end of school luau at Saybrook Elementary School Friday.


Staff Writer

SAYBROOK TOWNSHIP - - It was a Hawaiian luau Thursday for the first-grade class of Tina Tallbacka at Saybrook Elementary School.

During May, the students studied Hawaii and how the islands were formed, about volcanos, the customs of the islands and even the foods native in Hawaii. Students also learned how to count in Hawaiian and learned how to speak other words in the Hawaiian language, Tallbacka said.

Tallbacka started teaching the lesson on Hawaii about 10 years ago after she and her family vacationed there.

Student Marc Woodworth said he found the shells native to the islands interesting.

Kayla Kennedy, another student, said she learned that Hawaii is really beautiful and how to speak Hawaiian.

Student Michael DeCamillo found the volcanos native to the islands interesting, he said.

"I learned that some volcanos still erupt and that pineapples grow on a bush," DeCamillo said.

The luau, which included refreshments like pizza, chocolate covered strawberries and bananas, pudding and punch, was held in the cafeteria of the school.

The cafeteria was decorated with aloha signs, palm trees and posters made by students. The students made and wore grass skirts from green paper.

A few of the students wore Hawaiian shirts and sandals to get into the mood.

They also learned a Hawaiian song, "Hawaiian Rainbow."

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