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DOUBLE TAB TO ZOOM ON PHONE OR TABLET teachings about how the Pipe was given to various Indian Nations differ, all agree on the sacredness of the Pipe. To the Lakota people, the Chunupa (Pipe) symbolizes earth, all things that grow on earth, and all things that are on earth. This is represented on the Pipe by leather, feathers, sweet grass, and sage. Indian people consider the term “peace pipe” to be derog- atory and feel that class projects that involve the Pipe take away from its sacredness. They therefore regard such activities as highly inappropriate, in the same way that people from other religious traditions would object to children creating representations of their sacred icons. § Sun Dance Skull To many people, the term “sun dance” evokes images of an exotic Indian dance (or perhaps a particular automobile). Several activity books, includ- ing The Kids’ Multicultural Art Book (Terzian 1993, 22–25) and Multicultural Festivals (Weir 1995, 43–45), suggest having children make the buffalo skull from the Sun Dance. The buffalo skull is part of the Wi Wacipi, one of the most sacred ceremonies in the Lakota religion. Needless to say, it is held in deep respect, as are important religious icons in other faiths. Incorporating sacred items such as this into class art projects demeans them. Instead of helping children understand Native cultures, it teaches disrespect for their beliefs and traditions. § Totem Poles Many teachers introduce totem poles as individual or class sculpture projects. Global Art (Kohl 1998, 127) gives directions for making totem poles out of boxes, while More Than Moccasins (Carlson 1994, 169–171), Multicultural Festivals (Weir 1995, 15–18), and The Kids’ Multicultural Art Book (Terzian 1993, 30–33) suggest making them out of egg cartons, paper towel tubes, boxes, or paper. Totem poles are still carved by Native Nations in the Pacific Northwest to preserve important teachings, traditions, and histori- cal events and communicate them to future generations. A common phrase in the English language, “low man on the totem pole,” conveys a huge misconception. Among Indian people, the bottom of the totem pole is the most sacred place to be since the one at the bottom supports the whole world. While totem poles were never worshiped, a misconception of mis- sionaries that led to the wholesale destruction of totem poles, they are used Chapter 1: Native American Issues in Early Childhood Education § 19 COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL