Totem Poles

Totem Poles

TOTEM POLES Period 8 Computers WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO? In this project you will interview your family members about your family's history, find symbols that represent different parts of your family history, and build a totem pole in

Publisher that you explain in a Microsoft Office Powerpoint. You will also include specific colors and animals that represent yourself, to place on the totem pole. STUDENT OUTCOMES Students will visit web sites related to animals, animal totems and totem

poles. Students will create personal totems that reflect their own characteristics and spirituality. Students will create a multi-media presentation explaining their personal totems Students will develop a "family" or WHERE TO START Step 1 Answer the questions on the data sheet before creating your own totem pole. Use Only the websites given to you to find answers to the questions. NEXT..

Step 2 Talk with your parents, and find out as much as you can about your family history. Ask lots of questions. Take notes on interesting elements of your family history. Decide which symbols you are going to use to represent the different elements of your family history. Think about including totems other than people and animals (for example, a type of food or a national flag). Select four to five symbols. How does each of your symbols represent your family? Is there anything important about your family that is not represented by the symbols you have chosen? If so, find another symbol to represent it. LASTLY.. Step 3 Create your totem pole in publisher and then put it in an Office PowerPoint 2007 presentation with the

symbols you have collected. Experiment with stacking the pictures in different ways to form a totem pole that tells the story of your family in the way and the order you want to tell it. Show the completed totem pole on the first slide of the presentation, along with your name. Create a slide for each of the images on your totem pole that shows the symbol and explains what it means. HELPFUL TIPS/HINTS Design your presentation by choosing a theme, font, and more. You may want

to add audio clips ( point/HP030528551033.aspx ), too. Save your presentation. Practice talking about your slide show so that you can share it with your classmates and your family. PICTURES OF TOTEM POLES http:// 6totems.htm

http:// allery.html TOTEM POLE HANDOUT http:// y/documents/NW_Indian_Totem _Poles.pdf This handout includes:

The meaning of the colors Some animals and what they represent Several interesting facts about totem TOTEM POLE SITES AND FACTS http:// hibian.htm - Animal cut outs http:// wk.htm - Animals and characteristics MORE SAFE SITES An Exploration: / A Brief Introduction: http:// m

Totem Poles of the North American Northwest Coast Indians: http:// 6.01.x.html Types of Totem Designs: http:// MYTHS ABOUT TOTEM POLES Myth: Totem poles are a recent introduction to the Northwest Coast. Fact: Native Northwest Coast oral histories tell us that tall carved poles have been made on the Northwest Coast since ancient times. The earliest European explorer's drawing of a Northwest Coast house frontal pole was made at Dadens village on Haida Gwaii (the Queen Charlotte Islands) in 1791. The size and number of totem poles did grow during the 1800s. Myth: Totem poles can be read just like a book.

Fact: While it is sometimes possible to identify different animals, such as bears, ravens, eagles, it is not possible to interpret what the pole really means without knowing the history of the pole and the family that owns it. Myth: The "low man on the totem pole" has the lowest status. Fact: There is no universal significance to the order in which figures are placed on poles. Occasionally "ridicule" figures were carved to shame or embarrass a rival. TOTEM POLE FACTS History The phrase "totem pole" comes from a "totem," or symbol, of a northwest Native American tribe. Early missionaries believed that the poles were false deities or objects of worship and told their followers to burn the totem poles. However, totem poles are not religious artifacts, but more like tombstone markers or signs. They are built to tell stories through the totems carved upon them and to honor those who have passed.

Geography Southwest Alaska has a high concentration of totem poles, but the majority are found in Sitka National Park, in the southeast panhandle of Alaska, Saxman Native Village, located in Ketchikan, Alaska, and Totem Bight State Historical Park, also located in Ketchikan. You also can find authentic totem poles in such museums as the Smithsonian or in artifact collections in Seattle, Washington, and Portland, Oregon. TOTEM POLE FACTS. Function The northwest Native American tribes raised totem poles for various reasons. Modern totem pole carvers writing at Native-Online explain that some poles were built to honor a deceased elder who was of great importance to the tribe, while others were erected to display the various

names and titles a person earned during his life. Totem poles also were used to record important occurrences, such as communication with a god or supernatural being. They were carved and raised during Potlatch ceremonies, important spiritual family gatherings held during the winter months by northwest native tribes. Features Totem poles are carved with various depictions of supernatural beings and important animals. Each figure represents something for the clan: It either means "this animal/being represents who we are" or it depicts an important encounter with that animal or being, often spiritual. Some common totem pole figures include the following: the wolf, who can heal human beings at a price; the brave Sea Serpent, a strong warrior who protects the families that follow him during war; and the Thunderbird,

FACTS CONTINUED Size Totem poles come in a range of shapes and sizes. After contact with Europe, the Native Americans had access to better tools, and these monuments were built even higher. Totem poles range from the size of a walking stick, 5 feet high and a few inches wide, to well over 10 feet high and several feet wide. Totem poles traditionally were carved from a single tree trunk by an expert carver and his apprentices; the expert carved the first 10 feet of the pole, because he knew this was the part his viewers could examine closely, and the apprentices were allowed to carve the higher figures at the top. Misconceptions A number of myths exist concerning totem poles. For example,

some people claim that totem poles were used as talismans to ward off evil spirits or that the construction of totem poles was once a magical practice. This is not true; the carving of a totem pole is a logical process, one that has evolved mostly over the

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