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The student news site of Atlantic High School


The student news site of Atlantic High School



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See the Ceiling Tiles

Find out the reason and the students’ opinions behind the famous journalism ceiling tiles.
Taliya James
Rooms 408 and 410 are decorated with painted ceiling tiles. This tradition started in 2013.

Most people who attend AHS know of Allison Berryhill and her creativity in her classroom. She allows her students to feel more open toward their ideas and allows her journalists to put their creativity into painting a ceiling tile. 

Berryhill has been a journalism teacher at AHS for over 14 years, and said she took over after the previous journalism teacher, Heather Mckay, became the principal. Berryhill said, “I went to the journalism department at Pella High School where the teacher, Anne Visser, had the painted ceiling tiles in her classroom. I really liked the idea of the tiles and that the students could express themselves,” Berryhill said.

When I was a freshman, and I was in Berryhill’s reading class, I was excited to join journalism and make my own tile

— Emma Winford

AHS junior Emma Winford has been in journalism for two years.“I like the idea behind it. It gives the room creativity, and makes the classroom less boring,” Winford said. In her first year in journalism, she often found herself looking at the tiles. “When I was a freshman, and I was in Berryhill’s reading class, I was excited to join journalism and make my own tile.” Winford said, “I thought since I liked flowers I could do that with my name and the year I graduate.”

AHS senior Alyssa Neal has been a journalist at AHS for three years. Neal said, “I think it’s cool to see the old tiles from way back when they started everything.” It takes patience and time to get the tiles done and it took Neal about a week to complete hers. “I stayed after school with my friends to paint it,” Neal said. Neal intended on using a cross somewhere in her tile. “I picked out a color, and put my name on it and I had various people help me decide what else to put on it.” Neal enjoys looking at them because she’s never seen a teacher do ceiling tiles before. Neal said, “I love looking at all the new journalists’ tiles, adding to it every year adds something new.”

As for the tiles and the time it takes to get them painted and put into place. Berryhill said she would like to give a thank you to the janitors who use their time and days to help clean up all the messes these ceiling tiles make. “It makes a lot of mess to put them all together and I appreciate the janitors’ time and effort in helping clean up,” Berryhill said.

Video of 2021 journalists’ ceiling tiles available here.

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About the Contributors
Rylee Bengel, Staff Writer
Rylee Bengel is a sophomore at Atlantic High School. Bengel has taken Journalism 1 and is currently enrolled in Journalism 2. She enjoys journalism because she is with her friends. Her favorite memory in journalism so far is writing her ceiling tile story. Bengel has two sisters and a dog. In her free time, she enjoys playing with her dog, hanging out with friends and doing self care activities such as tanning and getting her hair and nails done. She is also a wrestling manager. In the warmer months, you can find Bengel working at Utterly Delicious. Bengel said “finding out someone punched a hole in the wall” is her favorite high school memory. After high school, Bengel is considering attending DMACC college to pursue a career in the medical field.  Bio by Maddy Anderson
Aunika Darrow, Staff Writer
Aunika Darrow is a sophomore at AHS and a proud JP student. This is her second semester in journalism and she is looking forward to staying involved throughout the rest of high school. Darrow’s favorite thing to do in journalism is take pictures. Her favorite journalism memory is taking pictures at a girls' wrestling meet for the yearbook. She has written an editor bio for Keeley Pedersen and two stories with Rylee Bengel. One was about the ceiling tiles in Allison Berryhill’s room and the other was about teen jobs around Atlantic. Darrow joined journalism because it’s an easy class and it has a good environment where she gets to spend time with her friends. Darrow enjoys the creative freedom she has when she writes stories and takes pictures. Outside of journalism, she spends her time managing basketball and playing softball and tennis. Some of her hobbies include working at the heritage house and spending her free time with her friends. In the future, Auni hopes to take more photographs for the yearbook and AHS Needle.  Bio by Addie Freund
Taliya James, AHS Needle Lead Editor
Taliya James is a senior at AHS. She is the lead editor of AHSNeedle. She runs, edits stories, and runs all of the social media.  James recently posted a video that is filled with emotion. James stated, “We asked students what they wish teachers knew and it has been a challenge for me to figure everything out.” The video got the best of SNO.  There is so much room for growth and improvement in journalism. “The creativity is amazing. I learn so much from my editors every day. I also love reading and writing so that’s a plus,” James said. There are so many aspects of journalism and so many new things that can be learned and a lot of new friends you can make.  Journalists have a life outside of school or their job nobody knows about. James is a cheerleader, dancer, competitive dancer, and she helps in the fall plays occasionally. Many people have many interesting things about them that nobody knows about. “I was born with gastroschisis. 98% of my intestines were outside of my body and I had to go through intense surgeries to save my life. I don’t have a belly button either,” James said.  “I love to write poetry. I also love to read and listen to the rain. I also play a lot of Hayday in my free time,” James said, “I am super open-minded, which makes me super easy to talk to.”  James looks up to English teacher Allison Berryhill. “She always pushes me to do better and inspires me to go the distance for my future,” James said. Ms. Berryhill inspired her to go to college for secondary education in English. The one person who knows James best is her sister Tayzun. “She is my other half. I can just look at her and she knows everything,” James said. Author: Mollie Gill

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    Taylee HagenNov 2, 2023 at 9:03 am

    I liked learning about the subject of the ceiling tiles.