Middle School Flag Project Flies High

For Frances Navin ’28, the roots of inspiration for her flag design started with a tree. “I really love music, nature and reading so I decided to combine those three things.”

Representing themes from favorite hobbies to personal causes, an array of colorful flags designed by middle school students are now on display in the Fonseca Center’s Wenberg Gallery. 

As an introduction to the principles of art and design, students in grades 5 to 8 tackled with enthusiasm the task of creating personal inspiration flags. Among the questions they explored as they created their flags were: What is the relationship between art and the real world? How does art reflect as well as shape us? 

Visual arts teacher Bruce Robbins was impressed with the young artists’ research, symbol design and hands-on creations of flags. “They had to tap into and create art based on things they personally like and feel strongly about,” he explained. “These things could include: identity, real-world issues and personal interests.” 

With a drawing of the Titanic front and center, Auden Griffiths ’28 proudly showcased his love of the sea in a piece titled “Alliance Flag.” He enjoyed this project so much he didn’t want it to end: “I wanted more time to spruce a few things up.”

Alongside the Puerto Rican and Trinidadian flags, which are symbols of her family’s cultural background, Jisella Jorsling ’28 included Stitch, her favorite cartoon character. She wanted to represent “everything in my life,” she explained. “It’s what I enjoy, and who I am.” 

Robbins observed that students explored what they stand for at this moment of their lives: “I feel this project helped to create community and understanding for our diverse and creative middle school students.”