Totem Poles 

While traditional totem poles tell a story of a culture and are traditionally depicted with animals, these students were tasked with transforming this linear idea to tell a stackable story of themselves. Every totem pole is created to represent the individual student's personality, preferences, memories, or values. Each totem pole has 4 individualized sculptures of objects or animals and spacers to separate them. Students had to figure out how to stack each sculpture in a way that is balanced physically and visually. While these components combine to create one sculpture, students meticulously spent time with each individual piece.  After spending a year with each student, I can say with confidence that each totem pole represents each student accurately!

For a close-up look at the art with name of artist, use the scroll buttons on the side and click on the image.

Scroll to see Details of Each Student'sTotem Pole

Madison Ley 

Grade 9

Madison creates a totem pole that reflects the beauty and grace needed to be a gymnast. 

Sofia Britton

Grade 8

Sofia created a sculpture that reflects the different cultures she has encountered while living in different places around the world. The man at the top is painted white to reflect a blank canvas and is depicted with bright colors around his eyes to represent his many ambitious dreams. 

Andrea Martinez 

Grade 9

Andrea creates a totem pole that represents her time at home with the people (or pets) she loves. 

Sophia Negron

Grade 9

Sophia Negron creates this totem pole to celebrate her Puerto Rican heritage. The castle structure at the bottom represents the Castillo San Cristóbal Fort in San Juan, the palm tree highlights the Carribean tropical climate, and the dominoes painted with a Puerto Rican flag show one of the fan-favorite pastimes amongst Puerto Ricans. Finally, the butterfly at the top represents her family's migration to Miami. 

Lauren Brandon 

Grade 8

Lauren created this totem pole to represent her fun and creative side. She is Florida-grown just like those oranges at the bottom, loves to play imaginative games and has a bright and bubbly personality just like her adorable dog sculpture. Finally, the sculpture at the top represents an anime style self portrait. 

Ryan Singer

Grade 9

Ryan created this sculpture to represent his great taste and his love for all things American. 

Mia Duran

Grade 9

Mia's dreamlike sculpture represents her love for music and nature. 

Alexandra Valvis
Grade 8

Alexa created this sculpture to show her love for exquisite, classy things and French culture. 

Life in Paris

Eric Fernandez 

Grade 10

Eric's sculpture represents his passion for baseball which is made clear by the glove catching a baseball in mid-air. The marlin and the elephant represent his two favorite teams. 

Rayna Anders

Grade 10

Rayna created this sculpture to recreate her very own winter wonderland. 

Valentina Macedo 

Grade 8

This totem pole is inspired by the beauty of life in the Amazon forest. 

Kyle Singer 

Grade 7

Kyle created this totem pole to represent his tight-knit family. The vibrant birds at the top represent his mother watching out for the family, the horse and dog represent his father and brother, and the turtle at the bottom represents Kyle and his friendly nature. 

Natalie Cortes Grade 9

Natalie created this totem pole out of self-hardening clay to represent a combination of things that she loves.