PORTLAND - Middle school students in Tigard-Tualatin are using paint to take on the pain left by the school shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

They re creating a huge wall hanging which will go on display in the community.

Art can heal because it can soothe, said Tamara Hufford-Wong a parent who went to the principal with the idea.

The students at Twality Middle School voted on the theme of fish and flowers. Each is painting a 12X12 inch fabric square.

I m painting a flower because it stands for peace and they make me smile when I see them, explained student Heidi Husband.

Their teacher says the students were extremely quiet in the days following the shooting.

They had just dealt with the shooting a Clackamas Town Center and then the shootings in Newtown happened. It was a terrible week, remembered Jeannine Miller.

Link:Healing Newtown

The painting gave them an outlet said Miller and they began to express some of their concerns.

School used to be a safe place, but now we all have worries, said one eighth grader.

The wall hanging made up of 60 squares will be displayed in Newtown once a cultural commission decides on a location.

They re going to see the finished product and the people back there will know even though we re here in Portland, Oregon we really care, concluded Hufford-Wong.

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