Not-So-Typical Classroom Assignment

What class assignment weighs more than 150 pounds and takes several middle school students to hand it in to the teacher?

A group Art class assignment, of course – but even then, it’s not a typical piece of artwork, such as a three-dimensional clay or carved stone sculpture. This assignment is a stone tile mosaic that’s more than five feet tall!

The eighth grade students in Darrin Johnson’s Art class at Ben Franklin Middle School have created four tile mosaics that have been placed in the school hallways to promote the Arts and enhance the school atmosphere.

Small groups of students employed color concepts and design principles studied as part of their Art curriculum to design their own tile murals. Individual stone, ceramic, and glass tiles, which were donated by Premier Construction and Remodeling of West Fargo, were then adhered to a plywood backing, and finally grouted together once the design was complete. The students worked on the mosaic project for about four weeks total, from start to finish. “This is a great student project. It promotes visual art and allows the students’ work to be part of the school for years to come,” said instructor Darrin Johnson. “It also pulls the creative side out of the students and gets them working together as a team.”







There are many painted murals that line the hallways on several floors of Ben Franklin Middle School that have been painted over the years; however, these are the first tile mosaics to be permanently installed at the school.  #FPSlearns


All photos courtesy Darrin Johnson.