Jaela Johnson

Jaela Johnson

Art & Art History, Robbinsville High School
15th year

What teacher had the biggest influence on you as a student & why?: My seventh grade English teacher, Eugene Dougherty, at John Witherspoon Middle School in Princeton taught me all the writing rules that I follow to this day.

Favorite book: Hmmm... It's hard to narrow it down to one. Am I allowed to offer a top 10? The Princess Bride, by William Goldman is definitely the one I've re-read the most often.

Hobbies: Mostly outdoor stuff... Camping, hiking, kayaking.

Favorite color: C'mon, that's not fair... You can't ask an art teacher to pick one favorite color.

Favorite meal: Anything that introduces me to new flavors. Most recently, a grilled veggie & cheese jumble recipe that came from Hello Fresh. 

Favorite musician or musical groups: Ask the kids in my classes... I listen to everything.

Favorite sports team: Whichever one my daughter happens to be playing on.

Favorite movie: So hard to pick... I like movies that make me laugh or show me a world different than the one we live in.

Three for dinner: My daughter, my high school best friend, & my grandfather. In my experience famous people are usually boring or really self centered. Why press my luck and discover that they'd be awful to hang out with? I'll stick with three people whose company I enjoy, who I believe would have a really good time together.

Proudest moment on the job: Any moment that I have everything done on time.

Fondest memory on the job: All the moments where I've done or said something really silly, so that my students get to see that I'm human and flawed.

What is your hidden talent: Home improvement projects... Masonry, tile installation, drywall repair. I don't like to do it... but I'm really good at it.

What inspires you: Life inspires me. I believe every day is full of new potential. So the fact that I woke up this morning is reason enough to try to make today even better than yesterday.

How do you make connections with students?: I treat students like people - they are full of their own wisdom, perceptions  and experiences, and it's really important not to undervalue that.

If you could pass on your wisdom regarding your job, what would you share: Be adaptable, there is no one right way to teach anything.

Is there a quote or saying that you live your life by: "Stuff happens... do what you can." 

What makes a good day at school?: Watching my students smile & have fun because they're actually enjoying what they're doing in class.
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