NORTH DAKOTA (KXNET) — When it comes to saving our indigenous languages, the Administration for Native Americans believes two steps are needed to preserve and save a language.
One is revitalization and the other is continuation. Right now, there is a large push in North Dakota and beyond to save and spread our native languages.
To revitalize a language, you need to put it in your schools or community, and you should try your best to write it down. This is an easier way to lay down the foundation in your region and spread the word, literally.
When it comes to continuation, language experts say to read the language as much as possible and speak it out loud as often as you can. Create language meetings and clubs in your community to keep the oral and written tradition alive.
“We are setting the stage to then do more, and what we hope to do with native languages is to work in the tribes and figure out how we can work directly with the tribes,” said Libby Washburn, the Special Assistant to the President for Native Affairs.
The federal government provides resources to our tribes, both financially and with content, thanks to a memorandum from our federal agencies.
In North Dakota, all of our tribal lands have opportunities to learn our state’s native languages.
To learn MHA Nation languages, click here.
To learn Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa languages, click here.
To learn Standing Rock languages, click here.