Archive for the ‘Dakota (dak)’ Category

Job offer: curriculum and resource developer in Manitoba, Canada

21 May 2011

The Frontier School Division covers 41 schools in northern Manitoba, Canada, some accessible only by boat or plane. Their mission statement includes the statement: “Language and culture celebrated in the community and school builds identity.”

Within the FSD is the Social Studies/Native Studies Department, whose mission statement includes the belief that, “…students will learn best and experience success when the language and culture of the community influences programs in schools.”

The FSD is currently seeking a full-time curriculum and resource developer for Ojibway at the divisional level. The job is permanent and will begin this September. The deadline for application is May 27.

Education requirements are:

  • Bachelor of Education degree
  • Masters Degree (completed or in progress)
  • Valid Manitoba Teaching Certificate

Other requirements include at least five years of instruction and fluency in Ojibway are required. Ojibway probably refers to Northwestern Ojibwa (ojb).

Unfortunately, the Aboriginal Education page with language information is under construction, but according to the Ethnologue, Assiniboine (asb), Chipewyan (chp), Dakota (dak), Northwestern Ojibwa (ojb), Plains Cree (crk) and Woods Cree (cwd) are spoken in Manitoba, along with English, French and Plautdietsch (pdt).

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US Conference May 16-17

6 May 2011

In cooperation with the Grotto Foundation, the Eni–gikendaasoyang (Center for Indigenous Knowledge and Language Revitalization) at the University of Minnesota Duluth is holding Minnesota Indigenous Language Symposium VI on May 16 and 17.

Topics on the provisional agenda include:

  • Skits based on the popular Ojibwemodaa immersion software for learning Ojibwe (oji)
  • Teaching Dakota (dak) without using English
  • The importance of morphology in learning Ojibwe (the “sound-based method”)
  • Technology and learning
  • Inter-generational learning

Theme: Weaving Indigenous Language Through Family, Education & Community
Dates: September 16-17, 2011
Location: Black Bear Resort & Casino, Carlton, Minnesota
Fees: USD 175, 140 elders, 100 higher education students; USD 200 after May 11

This post was inspired by “Language Symposium in Minnesota to take place May 16th & 17th” on the Spoken First website.

Indian Affairs Council of Minnesota Releases Report

6 April 2011

Serving as a liaison between the State of Minnesota and Native American tribes located there, the Indian Affairs Council of the State of Minnesota was established in 1963 and is the oldest such council in the US.

In 2009, the Minnesota legislature authorized a feasibility study on Dakota (dak) and Ojibwe (oji) revitalization. Last month, the volunteer working group issued the report, titled “Dakota and Ojibwe Language Revitalization In Minnesota.”

The contents of the report are:

  • Executive Summary
  • Introduction: Language Loss
  • Volunteer Work Group on Ojibwe and Dakota Language Revitalization
  • Context: Language Immersion and the State of Language Revitalization
  • Working Group Responses to Issues Identified in Enabling Legislation
    • Directive 1: Existing Language Programs
    • Directive 2: Inventory of Resources
    • Directive 3: Curriculum Needs / Barriers to Teacher Training
    • Directive 4: Curriculum Needs for Teaching Students
    • Directive 5: Meeting Curriculum Needs
    • Directive 6: Creating a Repository of Resources
    • Directive 7: State Technical Assistance
    • Directive 8: Funding
    • Directive 9: Laws, Rules, Regulations and Policies
    • Directive 10: Community Interest
  • Conclusion
  • Appendices
  1. Volunteer Working Group Membership
  2. Surveys
  3. Models for Language Material Repositories
  4. Research Bibliography

A summary of the report is available on the index page of the MIAC, but the first half will likely be removed, so it is provided below. The second part is at “Minnesota’s Lakota & Ojibwe Language Report.”

  • Dakota and Ojibwe languages are in critical conditions.
  • The population of fluent and first speakers of these languages is small, and only a few first speakers live in Minnesota.
  • Virtually nobody who speaks Ojibwe or Dakota as a first language has standard teaching credentials.
  • Successful models do exist for bringing Indigenous languages from the brink of extinction.
  • More than 100 programs and activities in Minnesota provide exposure to and/or instruction in Dakota and Ojibwe languages, reflecting the importance placed on this effort by language activists, educators, tribal governments and the Minnesota   Department of Education. Few of these programs, however, recognize the essential pedagogic requirements for language   revitalization, which include a role for strong immersion programming and the leadership roles for fluent speakers.  Language immersion programs are crippled by a lack of trained teachers; a dearth of curriculum materials; policies that   adversely affect the licensure, training and availability of required personnel; and limited funding. Currently, only the University of Minnesota campuses in the Twin Cities and Duluth offer preparation for licensure for teaching across the curriculum in Ojibwe and Dakota languages; neither of these operates for teachers in grades 9-12 and subsequently languages are seldom taught formally at that level.

This post was inspired by “Minnesota: Dakota And Ojibwe Language Revitalization in Minnesota” on the Indian Peoples Issues and Resources page.

News in Brief: Dakota/Ojibwe Preschool Immersion, Conference at Capacity, $781K for Publications

26 February 2011

With the aim of rebuilding the Dakota- and Objiwe-speaking populations in the state of Minnesota, US, the Alliance of Early Childhood Professionals provides preschool immersion. With classes at four schools in Minneapolis, children have been benefiting from this instruction since 2006. Read more in the article Revitalizing state heritage or visit the Alliance of Early Childhood Professionals site. According to the Ethnologue, there are 15,400 Dakota (dak) speakers in the US (as of 1990) and 3,880 in Canada. The Ethnologue gives a total of 79,360 speakers of Ojibwe (oji), a macrolanguage comprising Chippewa, five “Ojibwa” languages and Ottawa.

On March 25, the 1st Cambridge International Conference on Language Endangerment will be held in the UK. Sponsored by the Centre for Research in the Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities, or CRASSH, the conference is filled to capacity, though a waiting list is available. With the themes of language documentation, pedagogy and revitalization, the conference will include talks by plenary speakers Peter K. Austin and Nikolaus Himmelmann. For more details, see the article at SOROSORO.

The University of Nebraska Press has received a grant for USD 781,900 for three years. The money is for the Recovering Languages and Literacies in the Americas initiative and will be shared with two other presses. Each press will produce nine books on endangered languages to help with language revitalization. Read more at UNL earns three humanities grants.

News bits

21 May 2007

Indian language preserved on CD (July 1, 2000): The National Indian Telecommunications Institute uses a grant from the Fund for Four Directions to record Comanche.

American Indian/Alaska Native Education: An Overview (May 21, 2007): Article by Jon Reyhner summarizing the history, current situation and issues of Native education in the US.

Language Activists Panel Summary (1996): Article by Jon Reyhner summarizing opinions on Native education policy in the US.

Oneida Indian Nation Works to Recover its Language (November 21, 2006): NPR broadcast by David Chanatry.

Language Preservation/Retention (2003): Article on Dakotah revitalization efforts including a Scrabble effort. Links to “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” and “Mary Had a Little Lamb”.

Turtle Island Storytellers Network: Pacific Northwest and Northern Plains storytellers hold festivals and other events to maintain the time-honored crafts of storytelling and singing.