Johnson Jungle

Art, Guidance, Library, Music, P.E., & Spanish

Welcome to our new, revamped newsletter for ALL specialty courses and programs at Johnson Elementary! Previously entitled Artspeak, this Johnson-specific newsletter has been created by our full-time K-5 Johnson faculty we are excited to have been granted this year. With a team of educators providing incredible programs for our students, we are also launching our NEW website, which will be an ever-expanding collection of information and resources. Enjoy the following highlights!

Jennifer Flynn (Visual Art), Whitney McKay (Guidance Counseling), Marie Zimmerman (Library), Alyssa Vanderpool (Music), Nick Behymer (Physical Education), Julie Dashley (Spanish)


Learn MORE up-to-date, information about all of our programs on our new website. Read blog posts, see pictures, and view resource information for every grade!

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Kindergarten students are learning to take their time as they look at an artwork, and it's amazing what all they see! Students have explored different drawing and painting materials, and most recently have been experimenting with blending oil pastels. After looking at Johannes Vermeer's artworks, we considered objects from inside and outside to include in our artworks. Students even recognized how the artist Vermeer showed light coming through a window in his paintings. After looking at Jasper Johns' artwork, Three Flags, we discussed how we can draw objects in our art many different sizes - small, medium, and large, and we can fill the page with our ideas.

When asked, "What does it mean to be inspired?" A Kindergartener responded, "It means when you see something, it gives you an idea." EXACTLY! What an inquisitive, thoughtful bunch of kindergarteners we have here at Johnson. What inspires you?

Jennifer Flynn

K-5 Visual Art Educator

2nd grade Art Class Quote:

Mrs. Flynn: "Why is it important to have art in our community?"

Boomer: "Because it helps us learn about our world."

1st Grade Guidance with Ms. McKay

This month in Guidance, I visit each first grade class to teach and reinforce listening and focus skills, as well as how to be assertive. First grade students will learn about whole body listening. They will realize that true listening involves the entire body. When we listen with our eyes, we LOOK at the speaker. When we listen with our brain, we THINK about what the speaker is saying. When we listen with our hearts we CARE what the speaker is saying. And when we listen with our mouths, we ASK QUESTIONS to learn more about what they are talking about.
Color Your World With Kindness

JOhnson is a CARING school

The entire school is focused on the character trait of CARING this month. Students watched the video above during the morning announcements which demonstrated how caring can be contagious!

Here is the definition of caring that we use at Johnson:

“Caring means showing kindness and concern for others. Together with compassion and empathy, it is the foundation for positive relationships with others. This month we ask that you identify caring behaviors that you see in your child/student and reinforce them. Johnson is a CARING school.”


One thing parents should know that IS NEW to our guidance program is our CHARACTER CHAINS. This year, each student at Johnson has received either a 24 inch necklace (K-5) or an 8-inch bracelet (Preschool) with “starter charms.” All students start the year with a Johnson Jaguar “paw,” and a Tablet charm that looks a LOT like our current iPads. As the year progresses, Johnson students have the opportunity to earn more charms if they demonstrate excellence in an academic subject or excellence in their character. If they are recognized in our character program, children will receive a character charm…..but teachers (including our specials teachers) have been given academic charms as well. Students have the opportunity to earn charms in art, music, reading, library, science, math, citizenship, world language, physical education…and of course….in guidance as well. Mrs. McKay expects that each child will earn at least one more charm this year, and perhaps more!

Whitney McKay

Guidance Counselor

2nd Grade Library with Mrs. Zimmerman

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Students in 2nd grade have been learning about the Super 3 Research method by completing a STEM challenge. They researched how to make an object that could float in water, and then used MakerSpace materials to create the object.

Marie Zimmerman

Library Media Specialist

5th Grade - AUTHOR VISIT

5th grade students will be meeting with author D.J. MacHale on September 28th to discuss his latest book, Curse of the Boggin.

3rd Grade Music with Ms. Vanderpool

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You can write your own lyrics!

3rd graders are hard at work writing lyrics to create their own song book for Halloween!

Books will be published and printed the week before Halloween.

Alyssa Vanderpool

K-5 Music Educator

4th Grade Physical Education with Mr. B

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4th grade has been working on a Cooperative Games Unit.

The game pictured is "Scooter Soccer."

Cooperative activities are an integral component of quality physical education. Physical education is a unique discipline, where young people are expected to move rigorously, work often in pairs and groups, and improve their physical skills and fitness levels. To accomplish these goals, students must learn to trust one another, communicate effectively, develop positive relationships, and work together to solve problems and achieve common goals.

Nick Behymer

K-5 Physical Education

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4th & 5th Grade Spanish with Señora Dashley

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In fourth and fifth grade we having been practicing describing our hair and eye color in Spanish. In the examples, we made a pic collage and wrote about our eye color and hair color. Next, we will add audio and make a class book!

Julie Dashley

K-5 Spanish Educator

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Online Art Exhibits

Coming soon! We will soon be adding to our digital portfolios on Artsonia. Visit Johnson's Gallery to see artworks.

ART ROOM Donations

We appreciate your donation of any of the materials below.

  • Paper Plates (used as palettes for paint mixing)
  • Patterned/Decorative Paper (for collages)

Thank you for supporting our student art studio!


Cincinnati Art Museum Family Painting Event

Art in the Making: Landscape Painting

October 15, 1–3 p.m.
Families will journey through the woods to explore the special exhibition, Van Gogh: Into the Undergrowth, before creating a landscape painting with the help of a special guest artist. Designed for children ages 6–12 accompanied by an adult. Members: $5 per person, General public: $10 per person. Reservations required. Visit the Cincinnati Art Museum website for more information.

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Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra - NOV 19

Introduce the whole family to this charming musical story, Peter and the Wolf, on

Sat. November 19, 2016 | 10:30 AM

Every part of our orchestra helps bring this adventure to life, from the friendly bird, cat and duck (flute, clarinet and oboe), to the big, bad wolf (French horns)!

Visit the Family Fun Zone to try orchestra instruments, make a craft and more! Open pre-concert starting at 9:30 am and immediately following the concert.

Visit the CSO website for tickets and information.

Cincinnati Art Museum - REC

Rosenthal Education Center: Open Tues – Sun, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

The Rosenthal Education Center (REC) is the new art education space inside the museum. Through dedicated interactive exhibition and studio space the collection of the Cincinnati Art Museum is brought to life for children of all ages. The REC encourages families to discover the Art Museum’s collection in a fun, immersive, hands-on and safe manner through a variety of experiences.

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Cincinnati Children's Museum

Mini Makers programs are a chance to do new, fun and creative things when you visit the Duke Energy Children’s Museum! These interactive family workshops are designed for 5-10 year olds and provide an enriching experience for the whole family. Visit website for info.


Members: $8 per child, per session*
Non-Members: $10 per child, per session*

Space is limited. Register online or call (513) 287-7001.


Gourd Lamps
Create a lamp out of a gourd by designing a pattern, cutting holes and decorating.
October 15

Pumpkin Pin Art
Using a pumpkin as our canvas, we will create wonderful works of art with pins, string and a variety of other materials.
October 22

Jedi Academy
Create a working light saber and practice your Jedi moves as you apprentice with Obi Wan Kenobi.
$18 Member; $20 non-Member
October 29