Escher Would be Proud: Exploring Culture and Design with Tessellations

Curriculum Published 6/8/14 Last updated on 3/1/20

This is a print and digital resource for a unit on the exploring the work of M.C. Escher, a tessellation design challenge, and an exploration of cultural symbols.

This unit was designed with these goals in mind:

Have students learn about the graphic design work of M.C Escher.

Encourage students to look beyond the facts and pictures or even the stories of an artwork and seek to understand it's cultural, symbolic, and social meaning across cultures.

to have students select one of a number of approaches to create a repeat pattern design in the form of a tessellation.

This package contains instructions, student samples, downloadable and editable worksheets, reference links and a rubric.

  • Photoshop

    Editing and compositing for photos, web and mobile app designs, 3D artwork, videos, and more.

  • Photoshop Elements

    Organize, edit, create, and share your photos.

  • Illustrator

    Create beautiful vector art and illustrations.

Age Levels
1+ Week
Custom Standards
Ontario Curriculum
ISTE Standards
Students: Innovative Designer

Students should know Adobe Illustrator or Photoshop Basics.

CC License
5 / 5 • 6 Ratings

Resources (1)

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Comments (6)

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David Conover

Posted on 2/1/15 5:15:12 PM Permalink

This is a great creative and innovative example of math meeting art as well as art history. Great material.

Vicki Stephens

Posted on 9/16/14 9:28:02 AM Permalink

A very good project. Thanks for sharing.

Lee Richards

Posted on 8/16/14 5:57:15 PM Permalink

Superb resource, thank you, Katherine! FYI, typo in your description - 4th paragraph - "it's" for "its", 5th paragraph starts with lowercase letter, and your name in author is lower case :)

Happy teaching, learning, and collaborating!

Your friend,


Lorraine Buchan

Posted on 8/6/14 7:05:58 AM Permalink

Thanks, great resource!

Jennifer Herrell

Posted on 7/22/14 5:57:09 PM Permalink

Thank you so much for including a rubric!

Janette Wotherspoon

Posted on 7/13/14 7:21:38 AM Permalink

I love MC Escher and the logic behind tessellated patterns. Great resource