Welcome Back! 2019-2020 School Year

Every year, as families are packing in just a little more summer fun, their hardworking teachers and staff have already turned the corner with back to school training and preparations. This year is no exception. It was exciting to see district training and kick off sessions already happening leading up to this week. Our opening session on Monday, August 19 was especially encouraging as the JPS administrators, teachers and professional support staff prepared to greet our 5,300+ students the following morning.

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The opening session was a great time to reflect on good personal news for our team members, welcome new staff, recognize the experience among us and dig deep thinking through the challenging work ahead of us. 

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The beginning dialogue for the day was based on a concept by comedian, Michael Jr.; he shares a profound but simple explanation for knowing your purpose – “Know Your Why”. What happens when the thought process changes from “What am I doing?” to “Why am I doing it?” As educators, if we understand why we are doing something – what we are doing has more impact. Our talents, resources and opportunities should always be used to move us to our ‘Why’?

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JPS Staff and Administrators take out their phones to record their WHY

These opening sessions are also when we align behind the theme for the year. As we kick off the 2019-2020 school year, I challenged each person in the room to “Be Relentless”. Let’s be all in – let’s do everything we can to believe in ourselves and our students, providing them love that is reminiscent of a family, interacting with them in a purposeful way. Let’s be a constant source of inspiration for this generation of students. I, for one, do not want to look back on this school year and wonder what if? 

I’m so encouraged with the participation from the day and the takeaways from some of our building leaders. I am confident we have the right people in place to get the job done. 

STAFFPOSTERCrystal Morse, principal of Bauerwood feels that the focus to “Be Relentless” means “Every student will feel they have value and a place to belong. That they are not defined by the things that get in their way, and there is an adult that believes this for them – even when they can’t believe it about themselves….yet.” 

Rachael Postle-Brown, principal of Pinewood Elementary, reflected on our kick off day and said: “Our teachers at Pinewood, treat every single child at our building like they are their own and do everything they can to help and support them. For me, this “Be Relentless” theme illustrates our efforts and dedication to meet the needs of every child and help them grow, feel valued, and feel connected to our community.”

Brent Huck, principal of Bursley Elementary, feels the overwhelming call to “do everything possible to ensure that all students are able to experience individual success.  I want our students to feel connected, valued, appreciated, and loved. We want to Be Relentless in our pursuit of excellence!”

I am all in this year and I bring this challenge to the community members as well. I am committed to being relentless in supporting and walking alongside of JPS staff as they meet the intellectual, emotional, and social needs of our students. It’s a great day to be a Wildcat!! #JPSBeRelentless

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Terry Dykstra, Guidance Counselor at the high school recently received some well deserved and timely attention this week. He is the picture of what ‘Relentless’ looks like at JPS. Tuesday was his 52nd year starting back to school and still going strong! Watch this video and hear Terry’s heart for impacting the lives of young people.

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During the opening session with staff and administrators, we discussed the importance of simple, conscientious efforts like meeting students at the door to give them an individual, heartfelt greeting. This is something Bauerwood teachers have been doing but this year they will be at the student’s level – such a simple shift. Here, Mrs. Finses welcomes her students at the door, on their level to their first day of their best year yet!

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A Bauerwood 1st grader showed up early on Tuesday to make sure her Kindergarten friend had the best first day ever!

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Getting crafty on the first day at Pinewood

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A successful kick off to the new year at JHS.

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JHS teachers participating in a professional development session

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Jenison Junior High administrators & teachers experiencing a ‘Trauma Informed Educators’ workshop. We are all in for all kids! Being a Trauma Informed Educator prepares us to understand & meet the needs of students who need us the most!

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JPS K-2 teachers spend time getting ready to welcome our youngest Wildcats!

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Professional staff members new to JPS this year: we’re so thankful to have such talented, caring and dedicated educators who have “big hearts” joining the Jenison family!

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JPS employees invested 2 days of their summer in a life changing training called Capturing Kids’ Hearts.

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How will you show your relentless Wildcat spirit this year?

 

 

The Wildcat Reborn

For many years, high schools across our nation adopted school fight songs from universities as well as copying their mascot logos. In the 1970s, Jenison High School adopted a paw print mark and Wisconsin’s fight song, with words adjusted to fit our high school. In recent years, these university logos (including the University of Clemson’s Paw Print) have become trademarked and lawsuits have even been threatened against K-12 school districts for illegal use of copyrighted logos. With this in mind, we found it necessary to create a new logo and move away from the customary Jenison Paw Print.

As the new school year is days away, I am very proud to be able to officially introduce our fierce new look!

Much work has been done with a national branding company to design strong elements that are unique to our district. In the last few weeks, you may have noticed them appearing on school communications and on some of our social media channels.

While a complete transition to the new branding will happen over a period of time, the high school apparel store, “Cat’s Corner” will soon have merchandise available with the new logos. Necessary team uniform replacements will incorporate these into their design and district building markings will begin to be switched from the Paw Print to the new Wildcat Head.

It’s an exciting time to be a Wildcat!

 
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JENISON HIGH SCHOOL FIGHT SONG

“ONWARD WILDCATS”

(To the tune of “On Wisconsin”)

Onward Wildcats, ever onward, fight to victory! 

Green & White, forever fighting, here’s our cheer for thee! Rah! Rah! Rah!

Fighting Wildcats, loyal boosters, here’s to do or die. 

All for the fame of our school, Jenison High.

J – E – N – I – S – O – N, go Jenison

Go, Fight, Win!

On you Wildcats, on you Wildcats, On to Victory. 

Come on, Team; we’ll win tonight with loyalty to thee! Rah! Rah! Rah!

On you Wildcats, on you Wildcats, wave the Green & White. 

Come on, Team; we’ll win tonight so Fight! Fight! Fight!

ArtMoves Summer Series: Levi Beadenkopf

IMG_5896This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


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ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Levi Beadenkopf

  • Grade: just completed 1st grade
  • Favorite Color: Green
  • Favorite Food: Pizza
  • Favorite Book: Green Eggs and Ham
  • Favorite Movie: The Greatest Showman
  • Favorite class (besides art): Gym
  • A smell he really doesn’t like: Farts
  • Plans for the Summer: Camping, trip to the Poconos, swimming, playing with friends. 
  • Something he wants to get better at: Wrestling 
  • Something he is really good at: Baseball
  • Musical instrument? No
  • Pets? No
  • Age when he will feel grown up? 14
  • ‘Happy Place’? Family Chuck E. Cheese

“Sunset”

Artist Statement: Levi’s favorite part of this project was adding paint because it was “really fun and it turned out really nice”.  When Levi is not at school he makes stuff at home out of paper and paint, he does art every day! When Levi grows up he wants to be a wrestler, an artist, and basketball player.

Levi Beadenkopf


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Levi’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Remax of Grand Rapids. Thank you Wyoming Remax team for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!


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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves Summer Series: Julia Carney

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This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Julia Carney

  • Grade: just completed 4th grade
  • Favorite Color: Teal
  • Favorite Food: Pizza
  • Favorite Book: The One and Only Ivan
  • Favorite Movie: End Game
  • Favorite class (besides art): Writing
  • A smell she really doesn’t like: Her Brother
  • Plans for the Summer: Camping
  • Something she wants to get better at: Gymnastics
  • Something she is really good at: Gymnastics
  • Musical instrument? Not yet
  • Pets? Dog named Zella
  • Age when she will feel grown up? She’s not planning to grow up!
  • ‘Happy Place’? Family Campground14114742bd9c26c7aa162cb80d8724a868eeba22

“Zella”

Artist Statement: I like this artwork because it has a lot of patterns. I do a lot of patterns when I create my art. My Dad does a lot of art.  I think that is why I make art at home. I do it a lot when I am bored.

Julia Carney

 


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Julia’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at First United Credit Union in Grandville. Thank you Mark Richter and team for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!


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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves Summer Series: Kamy Sytsma

20190110_175919This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 

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ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Kamy Sytsma

  • Grade: Just completed 3rd grade at Pinewood Elementary
  • Favorite Color: Gold
  • Favorite Food: Watermelon
  • Favorite Book: The Stolen Girl
  • Favorite Movie: The Parent Trap
  • Favorite class – besides art: Gym
  • A smell she really doesn’t like: Rotten Milk
  • Plans for the Summer: Boating
  • Something she wants to get better at: Math
  • Something she is really good at: Gymnastics
  • Musical instrument? Recorder
  • Pets? Diesel – 5 yo German Shorthaired Pointer and Delta – 4 month old German Shorthaired Pointer
  • Age when she will feel grown up? 16
  • ‘Happy Place’?  Boating near River Ridge (On the Muskegon River)

“Abstract Chalk Portrait”

Artist Statement: I enjoyed blending the chalk pastels for my portrait. I also enjoyed tracing the pencil lines with black glue. At the end we had to spray hairspray on are artwork to keep the chalk pastels from rubbing off.

Kamy Sytsma


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Kamy’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Chemical Bank on Baldwin in Jenison. Thank you Chemical Bank for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!

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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves Summer Series: Allison Kachel

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This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Allison Kachel

  • Grade: just completed 11th grade
  • Favorite Color: Forest Green
  • Favorite Food: Pad Thai
  • Favorite Book: Banana Fish (manga)
  • Favorite Movie: Kill Bill
  • Favorite class (besides art): World Religions or Sociology
  • A smell she really doesn’t like: Gasoline
  • Plans for the Summer: I am attending an Interfaith camp over the summer.
  • Something she wants to get better at: Drawing…
  • Something she is really good at: Procrastinating 
  • Musical instrument? – No
  • Pets? If so, what are they and the pet’s name – I have a cat named Whiskers
  • Age when she will feel grown up? – 27
  • ‘Happy Place’? – In my dreams
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JHS Art Teacher Sara Buzzitta and Allison

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“Double Gourds”

Artist Statement: What I learned while making this project is that you shouldn’t blend oil pastels with a blending stump! I also learned that I need to use oil pastels lightly and gently. Another thing I learned is how fun drawing gourds is! I also think I could have contrasted the gourds a bit more with different colors. I think it would be fun to come back to this piece some time in the future and redraw it.

Allison Kachel


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Alison’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Hughes Management. Thank you Hughes Management for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!


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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves Summer Series: Trisha Shuck

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Trisha and her parents, Lindsey and Jeff Shuck at the ArtMoves Gala

This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Trisha Shuck

  • Grade: just completed the 6th grade at Bauerwood Elementary
  • Favorite Color: Magenta 
  • Favorite Food: Dessert 
  • Favorite Book: Land of Stories 
  • Favorite Movie: The Goofy Movie 
  • Favorite class – besides art: Gym
  • A smell she really doesn’t like: Onions 
  • Plans for the Summer: Hang with friends 
  • Something she wants to get better at: Painting 
  • Something she is really good at: Singing
  • Musical instrument: No
  • Pets: 2 cats, Jack and Ollie and a dog named Nala 
  • Age when she will feel grown up? 18
  • ‘Happy Place’? With my friends 
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Trisha and her art teacher, Ashley Hankamp


“Mixed Media Landscape”

Artist Statement: I like how I can express myself in art and how it takes me away from everything else and I can put my thoughts on paper!  My favorite part of this project was my crazy creative dots because they represent me!

Trisha Shuck


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Trisha’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Remax of Grand Rapids. Thank you Wyoming Remax team for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!


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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

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ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

ArtMoves Summer Series: Seth TerHaar

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This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Seth TerHaar

  • Favorite Color: Dark green 
  • Favorite Food: Tacos 
  • Favorite Book: Of Mice and Men 
  • Favorite Movie: The Sound of Music
  • Favorite class – besides art: English Literature 
  • A smell he really doesn’t like: The Sweet Pea Bath and Body Works scent!
  • Plans for the Summer: Curating for an art gallery and hopefully road tripping with friends! 
  • Something he wants to get better at: Oil painting and cooking 
  • Something he is really good at: Posting my artwork on social media FB:@sethhaarter, IG:@sethhaarter or Twitter: @sethhaarter
  • Musical instrument? I’ve been playing the cello for eight years 
  • Pets? A black cat named Pirate
  • How old will you be when you think you will feel grown up? I feel like a grown up in my artistic/business life but when it comes to doing things like getting ready to go to college I feel like a small child.
  • Where is your ‘happy place’? Anytime I am driving in my car for a longer period of time where I can roll down the windows and blast music through the speakers!

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    Seth with JHS Art Teachers Sara Buzzitta (L) and Melissa Griffore (R)


“Big Red”

Artist Statement: This piece was created for my AP Art portfolio. The goal of this piece was to really just experiment and practice using watercolors. I chose this landscape because I really wanted to use something that was easily recognizable like the Holland lighthouse.

Seth TerHaar

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Seth’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at the world headquarters of City2Shore. Thank you Steve and Shelley Frody for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!


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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves Summer Series: Shelby Orlik

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This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Shelby Orlik

  • Grade: just completed the 3rd grade at Rosewood Elementary
  • Favorite Color: Teal
  • Favorite Food: Chicken Stir Fry
  • Favorite Book: The Cupcake Club Series
  • Favorite Movie: Parent Trap & Freaky Friday
  • Favorite class – besides art: Math or Gym
  • A smell she really doesn’t like: puke and stinky feet.
  • Plans for the Summer: To have Fun!!
  • Something she wants to get better at: Rip Sticking
  • Something she is really good at: Gymnastics
  • Musical instrument: Ukulele
  • Pets: My dog, Mia
  • Age when she will feel grown up? Somewhere between 9 and 20
  • ‘Happy Place’? Sitting in my Big Joe

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“Sun/Moon Painting”

Artist Statement: Shelby’s favorite part of this project was painting with the bright neon colors. When Shelby isn’t at school she enjoys playing with her friends and reading. She would like to be a teacher when she grows up.

Shelby Orlik


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Shelby’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Tarry Hall Roller Rink. Thank you Tarry Hall for investing in our students and blessing your clients with this fun piece of art!

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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home.

Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

ArtMoves Summer Series: Quinn Terpstra

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This summer, we will highlight the Jenison ArtMoves program. Each week, we will feature one of the talented student artists and local businesses that have supported the Jenison Visual Arts Department.

Please join us in celebrating our students and thanking these local partners by visiting their businesses. ArtMoves Gala photography by Damion Van Slyke Photography.

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ArtMoves is an annual art leasing program created by the Jenison Visual Arts Department. The goal is to connect our talented students with local businesses, and to promote the outstanding work of our student artists.

Business owners in and around the community attend the annual gala and have the opportunity to lease their favorite artwork for a year. The artwork remains on display and at the end of the lease, the student receives their artwork back to proudly display at home. 

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Many hands go into making this program a reality! A heartfelt thank you goes out to…

  • Our amazing staff of Jenison art teachers fostering creativity in all students
  • Our high school art teachers and students who help mat the artwork
  • Mr. Albert’s high school wood shop class for making the custom frames
  • Norbert’s Glass for the donation of the glass for the frames
  • The many business partners who invest in our students and value the community we live in!

 


ArtMoves Featured Artist:

Quinn Terpstra

  • Grade: just completed the 3rd grade at El Puente
  • Favorite Color: Green
  • Favorite Food: Hamburgers
  • Favorite Book: Dog Man
  • Favorite Movie: Spiderman: Into the Spiderverse
  • Favorite class – besides art: Gym
  • A smell he really doesn’t like: Farts
  • Plans for the Summer: Summer camp
  • Something he wants to get better at: Math
  • Something he is really good at: Soccer
  • Musical instrument: No
  • Pets: 2 Fish (Stripe and Gill), and a hermit crab (Pinchy)
  • Age when he will feel grown up: 18
  • ‘Happy place’: Home
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Quinn with his art teacher Mrs. Rachel Kunnen

“Vase of Flowers”

Artist Statement: Quinn’s favorite part of this project was drawing the flowers and adding color using paint and oil pastel. When Quinn isn’t at school he enjoys watching tv and playing the Wii. He also likes to play on the swingset. Quinn is a fantastic artist and works hard at each and every project!

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Quinn’s artwork has been leased for 1 year and is on display at Hawthorne Collection in their Hudsonville location. Thank you Hawthorne Collection for investing in our students  and blessing your shoppers with this beautiful piece of art!