Totems Galore!

So I've been the world's worst blogger lately, but on the flip side, I've been the world's most awesome fifth grade teacher! Well, at least I'm trying to be :)

I have this year's batch of stylized totems that I wanted to share.
To create them, I ask the students these questions:
  • Have you ever felt drawn to one animal or another without being able to explain why? This could be animal, including birds and insects.
  • Does a certain kind of animal consistently appear in your life? This doesn’t necessarily have to be a physical appearance, it could be represented in other ways such as receiving card and letters with the same animal pictured over and over, unexplainable dreams of a particular animal, watching television and seeing the same animal featured time and time again, or, actually having the animal show up.
  • When you go to the zoo, a park, wildlife area, or forest, what are you most interested in seeing?
  • Are there any animals that you find to be extremely frightening or intriguing?
  • Is there a particular animal that you see frequently when you’re out in nature?
  • Have you ever been bitten or attacked by an animal?
  • Have you ever had a recurring dream about a certain animal, or a dream from childhood that you have never been able to forget?
Then it was time to create! One thing that I've learned was to organize my scraps that the students used by color. This cut down on the number of scraps in a huge, unmanageable pile.

Happy creating!


  1. Very cute. I had my kiddos roll their paper into a tube after their design was complete to make the totems 3D. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Oh my goodness. We just finished ours last week too. We are working on the writing portion now. Students had to write a 4 paragraph paper describing two characteristics they share with the animal. I also plan to build the totem poles and post them up in my classroom or hallway. Yours look amazing! Great job!


Thank you for taking the time to comment! I reply back by email, so please make sure you have that option enabled. Have a great day!