Fifth grade discussed the notion of functional artwork when we studied Moroccan tile. We studied the patterns and colors and viewed many examples, and then came up with some thumbnail sketch snazzy designs (yes, snazzy) of our own. We talked about different ways to print the pattern so that many tiny prints could work together collectively. We discussed rotating, brick, half-drop, and block patterns, and many students chose rotation.
Once the design was complete, we used cubical rubber erasers to create a printing plate. We made sure any lettering would be carved backwards, and sketched our design in pencil and then Sharpie on the eraser surface. Then we got to work with printmaking tools (students mostly employed the "V"), and carved our printing blocks. Color was added with regular Crayola markers, and I stressed to students to re-ink with each printing. Final designs were printed on 1" grid paper.