August is a time when many faculty in the U.S. are working on their syllabi. Do you teach field methods or language documentation at the undergraduate level? Do you think there should be separate courses for those topics, or just one course? What are the basic topics you cover and what assignments do you give? Do you have syllabi to share?
The LSA’s Ethics Committee and CELP are jointly reviewing nominations for the first Community Linguist Award, to be given at the LSA Annual Meeting in January, 2014. The award recognizes the outstanding contributions of community members toward language documentation and revitalizationi. For more information, see the LSA’s call for nominations.
The 2014 Institute on Collaborative Language Research (InField/CoLang) will take place in Summer 2014 at UT Arlington. The 2014 Institute will be oriented around Native American languages, but there will be considerable international participation. The Institute takes place over a six-week period in the summer. It offers an opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students, practicing linguists, and indigenous community members to develop and refine skills and approaches to language documentation and revitalization.
The Canadian Indigenous Languages and Literacy Development Institute (CILLDI) at the University of Alberta invites you to our 14th Annual Summer School, July 8-26 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. This summer we are offering a total of 20 University-accredited courses in the areas of language documentation, education and revitalization. Credit is available at both the graduate and undergraduate level, and bursaries/scholarships are available for both Canadian and International students.
For the first time this year, we are offering a full three weeks of intensive Cree and Michif language courses. In addition, we are proud to offer two brand new courses this summer:
LING 311 Online Tools for language Revitalization
This course provides an introduction to the use of new technologies to aid in language revitalization in both home communities and urban settings. Topics will include computer-based learning tools, online language courses, and the innovative use of social media sites. Students will examine how these new technologies are being used in indigenous language communities around the world, and will design a language technology plan appropriate for their own community.
ANTH 485 Landscape, Meaning and Culture: The Social Meaning of Place
This course explores how and why particular places are invested with social meaning by different cultural and linguistic groups. Students will analyze place-naming practices in their own and other Indigenous languages, and examine the ways in which people talk about place in both conversation and narrative. Students will also investigate various perspectives on map-making, and the ways in which Indigenous cultural and worldview can be incorporated into community mapping projects.
The full listing of our Summer School courses is shown below. Courses marked (CLC) are part of our Provincially-recognized Community Linguist Certificate program, now in its seventh year.
Block 1 Courses: July 8-17
LING 111 Introduction to Linguistic Analysis for Indigenous Language Revitalization (CLC)
LING 212 Morphosyntax of Indigenous Languages (CLC)
LING 311 Online Tools for Language Revitalization
INTD 318 Techniques for Endangered Language Documentation (CLC)
EDEL 306 Introduction to Language and Literacy Development
EDEL 463/595 Assessment in Indigenous Language Classrooms
EDEL 496/595 Using Literacy and Drama in Indigenous Languages Education
NS 103 Cree Immersion for Adult Beginners
NS 103 Michif Immersion for Adult Beginners
Block 2 Courses: July 18-26
ANTH 485 Landscape, Meaning and Culture: The Social Meaning of Place
LING 211 Phonetics of Indigenous Languages (CLC)
LING 213 Sentence and Discourse Patterns of Indigenous Languages (CLC)
LING 311 Community Language Archiving
INTD 311 Language Policy and Planning for Indigenous Language Communities (CLC)
EDEL 461/595 Second Language Acquisition: Teaching Indigenous Languages in an Immersion Context
EDEL 462/595 Developing Classroom Materials and Curriculum for Indigenous Languages
EDEL 496/595 Teaching Indigenous Languages Through Cultural Arts
NS 104 The Structure of Cree Through Immersion
NS 104 The Structure of Michif Through Immersion
Special Session: June 4-21
EDEL 496/595 Indigenous Language and Cultural Renewal, The Maori Model
Full information on courses, bursaries and more is available on our website: www.cilldi.ualberta.ca
We look forward to having you with us in Edmonton this summer!
Protect, Preserve, Promote, Practice and Pass On Your Language!
~~ The CILLDI Team
NIEA needs your urgent attention this week to ensure Native culture and languages are protected and preserved for our next generations.
The Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act (S. 3546), which authorizes and awards grants to support and strengthen Native American language immersion programs – including language nests, survival schools, and restoration programs – is currently up for reauthorization. With your help, we have the opportunity now to get the bill passed through.
TAKE ACTION NOW. Call Senate Committee on Indian Affairs Chairman Akaka (D-HI) at (202) 224-2251 today, and urge him to use the “clearance” process for a quick passage of Esther Martinez.
In your message, tell Sen. Akaka that:
- The Esther Martinez Native American Languages Preservation Act strengthens tribal language, culture, and identity.
- The survival of American Indian and Alaska Native languages is essential to the success of tribal communities and Native ways of life.
- The Esther Martinez Native American Languages Act provides tribes with critical support to establish and maintain immersion programs that revitalize Native languages.
- Oklahoma Schools Push to Keep Native Languages Alive (newamericamedia.org)
- Gmail to Support Its First Native American Language (chiefwritingwolf.com)
From Elizabeth Lowman with the Seminole Tribe of Florida:
I am in a BIG search for a couple of good interns or volunteers in South Florida. I currently manage two divisions at the Museum, Education and Oral History. We are re-signing a 3 year contract with Randforce and Associates for the digital indexing of the Oral History Collection. Over the last three years we indexed all of the audio interviews and had all of the video digitized with MediaPreserve. (Both companies are phenomenal, by the way)
Over the next three years, we will be adding the videos to the index. While Randforce will be taking care of most of the digital indexing and database management for the project, I need help adding the remaining audio to the index, conducting oral history interviews, accessioning and cataloguing the backlogged interviews, writing abstracts for the interviews, adding the interviewees to our “people biographies” database in PastPerfect, and potentially assisting with education-related projects.
Margaret Florey, with the Resource Network for Linguistic Diversity, has passed along this encouraging message:
Yesterday, in a blog post on Crikey Ngurrju!Manymak! Pupuni! NT drops First Four Hours in English policy, Greg Dickson broke the news that the NT Department of Education and Training has finally reversed its policy of Compulsory Teaching in English for the First Four Hours of Each School Day.
Communities, linguists and educators have lobbied long and hard for more than three years for the reversal of this retrogressive and damaging policy. Greg Dickson, Piers Kelly, Jane Simpson and other linguist commentators have written on numerous occasions about this topic on Crikey (e.g. 4/5/12, 4/11/10) and the Endangered Languages and Cultures Blog (e.g. 2/11/12, 31/8/11). AuSIL wrote many letters and media releases, held public forums, and produced the “Indigenous Languages in Education: What the Research Actually Shows” booklet. Opposition to the policy was a strong theme in submissions to the House of Representatives Inquiry into languagelearning in Indigenous communities.
In place of the 4 hours policy, NT Ed has released a Framework for Learning English as an Additional Language. The second policy point is entitled “Home/local languages are valued”. It notes that “Programs designed to deliver English literacy outcomes are inclusive of the student’s home/local language and culture as agreed with parents and communities. Home/local languages can and should be used where appropriate to support the learning and acquisition of concepts. There will be times, particularly in the early years, when it may be better to introduce concepts using the home/local language. This is good teaching practice and is to be encouraged. This is the Department’s approach for English as an additional language learning and one that is used across Australia and internationally.”
Point V continues “Some communities will identify a desire to have their children learn to read and write in their home/local language as well as read and write in English. The Department of Education and Training values home languages and culture and will support communities in this endeavor through the use of school facilities after hours for cultural and language activities and within the curriculum through language and culture programs.”
The Guidelines documents offers the advice that “Learning English as an additional language is complex and multifaceted as different first languages may present different challenges for teaching. The complexity of the EAL process means that schools must choose instructional approaches appropriate to the linguistic and cultural backgrounds of the learners.” Further, “Instructional programs must promote positive and accurate representations of children’s (and families’) first language and cultural heritage”.
These points must offer encouragement to NT communities who have keenly felt the destruction of language programs in their schools, and the concomitant impact of the detrimental 4 hours policy on school attendance and wellbeing within the community.
Congratulations to all who have fought so hard for this outcome! Much work now lies ahead to rebuild programs and we wish strength to al through the coming months.