What‘s Happening at Johnson

Screenshot of Cville Parks & Rec Summer Camp flyer

Summer camp registration now open!

Screenshot of Cville Parks & Rec Summer Camp flyer
Click to view and download full flyer PDF

Charlottesville Parks & Recreation will be operating Camp Shenandoah for rising grades 1-4 at all city elementary schools this summer.

Students may sign up for full-day camp and/or wrap-around camp for students participating in summer school. Since summer school invitations won’t be finalized until April, it is advised that you go ahead and register for the full day of camp now to reserve your spot. Financial assistance is available for camps and applications are available at any Parks & Recreation center in the city.

Rising 5th graders should register for Camp Blue Ridge at Carver Recreation Center.

Flyers will be sent home in backpacks. You can also access the digital flyer and PDF by clicking on the above picture. Parents can also use this link to register your child.

Registration is now open!

Energy and Water Management Program: Spring Quarter Poster image discusses reducing water and energy waste

City and Schools promote energy and water conservation-Spring Quarter Update

Energy and Water Management Program Spring Quarter Update reminding people to reduce energy and water waste.Charlottesville City Schools and the City’s Energy and Water Management Team are working together to reduce the energy and water footprint of all City schools. On April 11th, 2019 the School Board approved an Energy and Water Performance resolution, showing a commitment to achieving and maintaining high performing school facilities. 

Continuing on past efforts, the City’s maintenance and development teams are specifying high efficiency building equipment, such as high-efficiency chillers and LED lighting, and are enhancing operational control through advanced building automation systems. Charlottesville Schools and the City’s Energy and Water Management Team continue to investigate ways to accelerate the installation of high performance equipment throughout our schools.

The City is also working with each school to raise awareness about energy and water saving practices through education and outreach efforts that include distributing educational materials and providing tips and strategies that students and faculty can use to reduce the energy and water impact at our schools. 

Each quarter a different theme emphasizes aspects of energy and water efficiency/conservation. The 2019-2020 themes are:

  • Fall (September – November): The Value of Energy and Water
  • Winter (December – February): Understanding Our Energy and Water Use
  • Spring (March – May): Smart Energy and Water Use
  • Summer (June – August): Keep Going! Summertime Savings

Have questions about this program? Contact the City’s Energy and Water Management Team at EnergyWaterTeam@charlottesville.org.

Learn more about other green initiatives at Charlottesville City Schools here.

2019-20 Education and Outreach

Energy and Water Management Program: Spring Quarter Poster image discusses reducing water and energy wasteSpring Quarter: Reducing our Energy and Water Waste

This spring the Energy and Water Management Team is back with more reminders to help us trim up our energy and water use!

Help our school reduce energy waste! Make sure outside doors close behind you and tell an adult if propped open. This will help keep our cooled and heated air inside our school rather than letting it escape through open doors to the outside!

Don’t forget to bring your reusable water bottle along with you wherever you go! Fill it up from tap water, which comes from our rivers and is cleaned to make it safe and taste good. Before dumping out any left over water, think reusable by giving it to some plants that would happily enjoy that water.

Spring Quarter Tips:
1. Keep outside doors closed
2. Fill up your reusable water bottle with tap water
3. If you see a water leak or an open outside door, report it!

If we each reduce our energy and water waste at school and at home by focusing on these easy habits,together we can have a real impact.

Energy and Water Management Program Winter Quarter posterWinter Quarter: Understanding our Energy and Water Use

Did you know that the greenhouse gases produced from energy used at all 10 Charlottesville City Schools is equal to the greenhouse gases produced by 500 homes? We know our schools need resources to operate but what exactly uses energy and water in our schools every day?

We are asking students and faculty to try to identify what uses energy and water when you walk into your classroom each day. For energy, think about the overhead lighting, computers, electronics, and air conditioning/heating. For water, think about the water fountain in the hallway and sink in your classroom. What about at home?

There are also the items that aren’t as noticeable such as leaving your phone plugged in even when it’s fully charged or not paying attention to that dripping faucet. Even when a phone is plugged in and is fully charged, it still uses 2.24 watts of energy, and that slow drip…drip…drip of a faucet can waste 3,000 gallons of water a year!

Let’s reduce our energy and water impact at school and at home by focusing on these easy habits we can do each day.

Winter Quarter Tips:

  • Turn the lights off when you leave a room.
  • Make an effort to unplug personal electronics.
  • Turn the water off when not in use.
  • If you see a water leak or hear a running toilet, report it!

 

water and energy management posterFall Quarter: The Value of Energy and Water

The energy and water that we use at home and in our school are typically provided using finite resources. In Virginia, fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas) are used to produce over 60% of the electricity that we use, with nuclear and renewables making up the rest. We also use natural gas directly to heat our school and to heat our water. The water we use is pumped from reservoirs fed by rivers and is treated before coming to our homes and school as clean, potable water.  Simply put, our demand for electricity, natural gas, and water (the amount we use) has a direct impact on these resources. We have a responsibility to manage what we use but we’re also empowered with the ability to make lasting change.

In many cases we use more than we need, so we already have simple opportunities to reduce our impact. The best place to start is just becoming aware of when and how we use energy and water throughout our typical day. As you do your normal activities, think about how long you leave your lights on, leave your phone plugged in, and leave the water running. Now think about how you can adjust your behaviors to trim that up a bit.  It’s a game of inches, not miles, and small changes add up to big savings.

Fall Quarter Tips:

  • Last one out? Flip the switch!
  • Turn the water off when not in use.

 

Rising fourth graders visit Walker School 2019

Walker school counselors to visit current fourth graders in coming weeks

The Walker Upper Elementary School school counselors are busy planning their annual visits to all city elementary schools to provide information and guidance to rising fifth graders. For a full calendar of related-events, see important dates below.

“We want to make the transition to a new school as seamless as possible for our current city fourth graders,” said Walker School Counselor John Kronstain. “By visiting these students in the coming weeks, we hope to make connections and put them at ease by providing useful information and answering questions they may have.”

Rising fourth graders visit Walker School 2019
Walker students lead visiting rising fifth grade students on tours to show them their future school.

After visiting each of the six elementary schools, Walker Upper Elementary School will invite all city fourth graders to visit the upper elementary school in the spring for Rising Fifth Grade Visit and Tour Day. This will be followed by a Rising Fifth Grade Parent Night that will include dinner, tours, and an information session for families to ask questions.

The school counselors will introduce the rising fifth graders to a variety of information including choosing electives for the 2020-21 school year.  Fifth and sixth grade students at Walker can choose two electives. The first selection must be a fine arts option–band, orchestra, music and chorus, or visual arts–and the second choice can be Spanish, Pre-Engineering, or an additional fine arts option (students may not choose both band and orchestra in the same year).

For more details on elective options, view this video:

Upcoming Important Dates

  • January 28 Buford Curriculum Expo (for rising 7th- and 8th-graders), 5pm
  • January 31  School counselor visits at Jackson-Via and Greenbrier
  • February 4  School counselor visits at Burnley-Moran and Clark
  • February 5  School counselor visits at Johnson and Venable
  • February 10-17  Elective forms sent home with students–please discuss and make selections with your student
  • February 28  Completed elective forms due back to school
  • March 31 and April 2: Instrument Selection Nights, 5-7pm
  • April 14  Rising Fifth Grade Visit and Tour Day at Walker Upper Elementary (students will be brought to Walker during the school day via school buses)
  • April 14  Rising Fifth Grade Parent Night at Walker, 5:30-7:30pm (parents and their rising fifth grade student are invited to join us for dinner and information session)

 

 

 

 

graphic 2019-20 surveys

Surveys

graphic 2019-20 surveys

Survey about Chromebook Computers and WiFi Hotspots

Encuesta sobre computadoras Chromebook y puntos de acceso WiFi

Please help us plan for distributing Chromebooks and WiFi hotspots to families who need them during our extended school closure. Thank you!

Ayúdenos a planificar la distribución de Chromebooks y puntos de acceso WiFi a las familias que los necesitan durante el cierre de nuestra escuela extendida. ¡Gracias!

Johnson students in library.

Johnson Specials Monthly Digest November 2019 is now available

Students holding "Bring Your Parents to Special" flyers.The Specials teachers and your child are excited to share their amazing experiences in our classes!  We would like to welcome you to join us on November 18 to 22 for “Bring a Grown-up to Specials Week.”  Drop in to see what we are doing in Art, Music, PE, Library and/or Spanish!  Please return RSVP forms or call the school if you would like to visit.

Here’s a look at what our Specials classes have been up to recently:

Art

by Jocelyn Johnson

 johnsoj2@charlottesvilleschools.org

Johnson student showing self-portrait.Art students have been busy acting like artists—looking at art, discussing design, creating their own work and reflecting on it.  Four-year-olds used thin and thick lines to describe autumn trees, inspired by Gustav Klimt’s Tree of Life. Kinders drew and painted Frida Kahlo-inspired self-portraits using a VARIETY of lines. 1st graders strived for BALANCE through symmetry in their cut-paper collages, inspired by the glass sculptures of Chihuly.  2nd graders drew elaborate cylindrical birthday cakes, adorned with PATTERN after artist Wayne Thiebaud.  3rd graders aimed for UNITY between painted leaves and backgrounds in work inspired by Georgia O’Keeffe. And 4th graders considered proportion as completed pastel self-portraits set in landscapes, after Vincent VanGogh. I am enjoying seeing every student grow and create!

GOT GOURDS? We could use about 15 small colorful gourds for our K-4 still life project. If you would like to donate a few, please drop them off anytime before Thanksgiving break!   Finally thanks to all the parents who have volunteered to help hang work this quarter!  I will have more opportunities to help after Winter break!

Music

by Sydney Boggs

boggsS1@charlottesvilleschools.org

Pre-K has been exploring the bars of xylophones and what it means to create sound effects for a story! They also have been learning new songs about love and friendship as well as movement games that promote sharing and teamwork, like “Here Comes a Bluebird Through My Window.” Pre-K will have a Winter Concert during the school day on Friday, December 13th at 11:15am!

Student showing sign that says "I am thankful for my brother."

Kindergarten has been learning new songs about friendship, love, and about how to make each day special like the song, “Roses and Thorns.” They have been using the numbers one through ten to organize patterns in songs and poems. They have been continuing to practice their steady beat on several percussion instruments, including the hand drums!

1st Grade & 2nd Grade is getting ready for their concert! They have been learning about many different winter holidays including Kwanzaa, Hanukkah, and Christmas. In addition, they have been practicing gratitude by sharing what in life makes them feel thankful. 1st grade has some fun and beautiful songs up their sleeves for their concert- and they can’t wait to share their talents with you on Monday, December 9th at 6pm!

3rd Grade & 4th Grade recorders are in full swing!!! The students have been very excited to earn their recorder belts!! Ask your child what Recorder Karate is all about if you haven’t already! They have been bringing home music and also have access to practice mp3 files here: Recorder Karate Songs.

*3rd and 4th grade will be beginning Ukuleles very soon!! Stay tuned for more updates on this!*

Library

by Ms. Rebecca Flowers

flowerr1@charlottesvilleschools.org

Johnson students in library.October in the library means it’s time to get creepy! We had a lot of fun reading our favorite slightly spooky Fall and Halloween stories last month. One of our favorite authors, Aaron Reynolds, and illustrator, Peter Brown were featured during our readings of Creepy Carrots and Creepy Pair of Underwear. Kindergarten and 1st-grade students made their own creepy carrot to take home and share with their families. Other students may have chosen to make creepy carrots and glow-in-the-dark creepy pairs of (paper) underwear during Tinker Time this month. Hopefully, you weren’t too scared!

Some of our other favorite Fall reads have been, “The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything” by Linda Williams,” If You’re a Monster and You Know It” by Rebecca Emberly, “Halloween Pie” by Michael O. Tunnell, “The Scarecrow” by Beth Ferry and the Fan brothers, “The Hallo-wiener” by Dav Pilkey, “The Runaway Pumpkin” by Kevin Lewis, “I Just Ate My Friend” by Heidi McKinnon, and “Hey, That’s My Monster” by Amanda Noll.

Therapy dog visits Johnson.

3rd and 4th graders have been learning to use the library catalog and where fiction and non-fiction books are located in the Johnson Library. We will start practicing our alphabetizing and Dewey Decimal skills soon and perfecting them throughout the year, so students can find books in our school library and also at their local public library.

We welcomed therapy dogs to the library this month and are excited that we will have a regular therapy dog visiting Johnson on Mondays starting soon. Stay tuned to hear all about Ms. Trisha and her dog Tank!

Discover new books with your kids by reading their library books with them every night. If they need more, they can always return their books and get new books during morning checkout from 7:40 a.m.-8:00 a,m.

Physical Education

by Kelly Walters

walterk1@charlottesvilleschools.org

Johnson PE Class plays with parachute and ball.Temperatures are dropping outside but students in the Johnson gym are cranking up the heat! We learned what maintaining an elevated heart rate feels like by doing step aerobics and a Tabata scarf workout. We played with a 5-foot beach ball to strengthen our cooperation skills and practiced giving constructive feedback for basketball skills. All 2-4th-grade students practiced or performed the 5 fitnessgram tests and showed awesome effort! In health, we learned how to wash our hands and how to use cold-prevention strategies.

Physical Education is all about growing. We learn valuable cognitive, physical, and social skills through games and activities. Thank you for encouraging and supporting your children as they continue to develop into the healthiest and happiest version of their amazing self. If you have any questions, comments, or ideas you’d like to share please email, call, or come see me.

Spanish

by Sra. Smith

Spanish students at Johnson show their Calaveras masks.Kindergarten and First grades: Students have been learning about colors, numbers, weather and seasons. We are now focusing on family members and holidays celebrated in Spanish Speaking Countries. We discussed how families celebrate certain holidays and compared it to how we may view and celebrate here in the United States. In lieu of El dia de los muertos, students decorated masks called Calaveras.

Second Grade: Students created a Calavera Flip Book and wrote about how and why El dia de los muertos is celebrated in Mexico and other Spanish Speaking Countries.  We focused on family members and how this holiday compares to Halloween. We discussed how families get together and prepare for this important day. They are also learning family vocabulary and how to describe members of their family.

Student-made sugar skull.

Third Grade: We completed our Me gusta and No me gusta unit and activities and are focusing on family members and descriptive adjectives.  Students learned about El dia de los muertos which is celebrated in Mexico on November 1st & 2nd. They created Ofrendas and were displayed on international day.

Fourth Grade: My students are working on descriptive adjectives and family vocabulary. In lieu of El dia de los muertos, students enjoyed making Calaveras which are Sugar Skulls. These are an important part of the holiday that children from Mexico look forward to.

Minds in Motion kids performing at MLK PAC

4th graders present annual Minds in Motion performance at MLK PAC

Minds in Motion kids performing at MLK PAC
Photo Credit: Aaron Eichorst

Our fourth graders amazed us this week with their Minds in Motion performances at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Performing Arts Center!

Through a unique partnership with Richmond Ballet, each year city fourth graders are introduced to creative expression and live performance through movement and dance at their schools. This year, Minds in Motion teaching artists from Richmond Ballet visited each elementary school for two-week residencies which culminated in two live performances of “Journey of the Monarch.”

More photos from the performances can be found on our Facebook page.

In addition, a video of the performance will be broadcast on Charlottesville’s public acess channel for education, Comcast Channel 14. It can also be found online using this link. 

 

Johnson plaque

City, City Schools install historic marker at Johnson Elementary School

Eugene Williams, wife, and daughters stand at newly-installed plaque at Johnson Elementary.
The Williams family, along with Mayor Nikuyah Walker, Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins, and School Board Chair Jennifer McKeever, observe the newly-installed historical marker at Johnson Elementary (from left: Eugene Williams, Lorraine Williams, Karol Williams, and Scheryl Williams Glanton).

On Wednesday, October 23, the City of Charlottesville and Charlottesville City Schools dedicated a new historic marker focused on the desegregation of Johnson Elementary School in October 1962.

Honoring the trailblazers who were part of the school’s desegregation, the City of Charlottesville and Charlottesville City Schools unveiled a new marker near the school’s entrance on Cherry Avenue, followed by a ceremony in the school auditorium,

Historical marker at Johnson Elementary
Standing in front of Johnson Elementary School on Cherry Avenue, the marker recognizes the third school in Charlottesville and Albemarle County to integrate after Massive Resistance.

The sign continues the story of Charlottesville City Schools’ desegregation as detailed on a historic marker in front of Venable Elementary School (with a duplicate sign near the Albemarle County Office Building, the former site of Lane High School). The original sign speaks to the initial desegregation of Venable and Lane in September 1959.

The new sign installed at Johnson School primarily addresses the period from 1959-1962, during which the City Schools minimized additional integration of the schools. Court cases led by the NAACP challenged discriminatory practices in the schools, and in 1962, the schools were compelled to expand desegregation, including allowing black students into all-white Johnson School. Johnson became the third public school in Charlottesville to integrate.

Williams family at plaque dedication.This effort was led in part by then-NAACP President Eugene Williams and his wife Lorraine, at that time a teacher in the City Schools. Their daughters, Karol and Scheryl, were among the 17 named plaintiffs seeking entrance to Johnson, Venable, or Lane. They, along with Michael Lewis and Rosalind Whitlock (whose parents had separately requested a transfer to Johnson), were the four to desegregate the school in 1962.

“The installation of this marker becomes another opportunity for community members, especially our school children, to learn the truth about Charlottesville’s history,” said the City’s Charlene Green of the Office of Human Rights. “We are telling more of those stories that have shaped Charlottesville’s narrative. It’s critical that we tell everyone’s story, no matter how uncomfortable it makes us.”

“We are pleased to honor these trailblazers — the parents and children of yesterday who have made gains and opportunities for all of us,” noted Charlottesville City Schools Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins. “The best way for us to honor them is to continually open up doors and improve outcomes for all students.”

To view video of the event, visit C’ville Quick Takes: Desegregation Trailblazers from Charlottesville TV10 on Vimeo.

For more photos from the dedication ceremony, visit Facebook.com/cvilleschools.

Related Links

 

 

Johnson students in garden

Mud and imagination in the Johnson garden

2019 marks my eighth year in the Johnson Garden. One of the things that makes both Johnson and the garden program here so special is the sense of ownership that teachers and students have taken. Over the years, as the Garden has grown so has the overall participation across the school, and in turn, the opportunities for learning have similarly expanded. This year, every teacher at Johnson, across all grades (even the 3 year old pre-K class) scheduled weekly or biweekly garden time before the school year had even started!

Each year, teachers bring both their students and their ideas, thereby making the Garden better for themselves as well as the next class and the next generation of students who come into this space. Our new and growing Science Center and Mud Kitchen, the idea for which came from a former Johnson teacher, is one such project. The Center continues to be a work in progress and has already been well-used. The roof is finished and we have a running sink which will soon use rain collected from the roof. Additionally, we have an erosion table, a word puzzle and a spinner for games and random selection.

photo collage of kids in Johnson garden

This fall also saw the addition of a water feature with Cat Tails and a sarracenia, a carnivorous pitcher plant. The sarracenia has been a particular point of fascination for our students who like to peer down into the pitchers and catch sight of captured flies and other flying insects. We are looking to add some small fish to eat mosquito larvae.

We are growing a variety of greens (lettuce, kale, collards, spinach, red cabbage, sorrel) as well as broccoli, carrots, radishes, beets, beans, squash, tomatoes. In addition to the vegetables, we are currently rich in herbs and have basil, oregano, parsley, cilantro, rosemary, mint, stevia, lemongrass, lemon thyme, lemon balm, sage and lavender! Students love to explore the sheer variety of tastes and smells.

Over the course of this year, we are planning to continue to transform our upper bed area into a Pollinator Garden with wildflowers, bulbs, butterfly bushes and clover trail.

Excerpt from City Schoolyard Garden September 2019 Newsletter
Written by Rick Harden