"Kaleo cooks the rice."
Translation:Kuke ʻo Kaleo i ka laiki.
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I'm not sure where you got that idea. The subject goes right after the verb. I suppose if the sentence is just subject and verb it can look like the subject is at the end. But if there is an object, a location, a time stamp, etc. then those would go after the subject and the subject won't be at the end of the sentence.
The two represent similar but slightly different concepts. Remember, Hawaiian is not just a secret coded way of writing English: it's a different language that deals with situations slightly differently.
Puhi palaoa 'o Ka'iulani - She bakes bread. Maybe it's what she does, she's a baker by profession or hobby. Or she might, in fact, be doing it right now.
Puhi 'o Ka'iulani i ka palaoa - She is baking the bread. Maybe we were talking about some bread before: well, she's the one who's baking it. Or it's just a statement of fact: right now, she is baking the bread.
These aren't even two different disjoint ideas: there's a lot of overlap. Just hearing the sentences in isolation from its real-life context doesn't really tell us which it is. For this reason, Duolingo usually has a fair amount of leeway as to how it translates sentences.
From what I know, they are equivalent, though I would guess kuke to be the newer word (based on its English roots). But in my limited experience with the language, I have heard it used more, including in compounds like lumi kuke. It does seem like Duo should accept either.