“I think it brings together our sense of family,” said Lakeshore art teacher Troy Wells, who has been working on the mural since May.
Wells drew up a sketch of the mural last spring. Based on the sketch, he rolled out clay slabs in his classroom and had students cut out shapes “however they wanted,” he said.
“Every kid in the building is a part of this,” Wells said.
Students and staff stamped their names in the tiles, before they were glazed and sent to the kiln.
Wells then placed the tile pieces on three 12-by-12-inch papers before gluing them on and mounting three large pieces of plywood on the wall.
Wells worked on the mural throughout the summer. He put on the finishing touches of the mural’s border just as school began this morning.
Students this morning stood and looked at the mural — as they looked for their lockers and entered their classrooms — some even searching for their own tile.
Lakeshore Middle School staff tiles are scattered throughout the lighthouse in the mural, Wells said.
Eighth-grader Erin “Pixie” Bitner said she remembers working on her tile last school year and how students were crunched for time to finish their tiles. This morning, she scoured the mural for her tile stamped “Pixie,” but was unable to find it.
“I love it,” she said, as she stood back and looked at the mural. “It’s really cool. And the entire school was involved, so it’s even cooler.”
As the first day of the 2011-12 school year began, Lakeshore sixth-graders were welcomed by eighth-grade “Web Leaders” in florescent yellow shirts to help them get through first-day jitters.
“We are just helping them find their lockers and their classes,” said Web Leader Lindsey Dewitt.
To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.
To see more photos of the first day of school, click here.