Bubble Policy: How Can Immersion Bubbles Help an Indigenous Language Community?

In my last blog, I wrote about the obstacles to maintaining an immersion bubble. In this blog, I ask how the immersion bubble, as a kind of “language policy”, can further the interests of an Indigenous language community. There are two related benefits to immersion bubbles, as I see it. One benefit is that they… Read more »

Bubble Policy: Why Do People Break or Keep Up Immersion?

The idea of creating an “immersion bubble” is probably nothing new in language learning. Nor is it new within the field of language revitalization in the 20th and 21st centuries; creating immersion bubbles has been a goal of many revitalization movements at least since the kōhanga reo pre-school immersion initiatives in Aotearoa (New Zealand) in the… Read more »

How to Use a Hunting Book

Take notes like a pro, or like a 5th grader, so long as you do it! In 2015, during my first summer with WAYK, Evan and Susanna gave me a hunting book to use for tracking the chinuk wawa I was learning. I’ll be honest: I didn’t really like or use it. I found it… Read more »

Keep Calm and Calendar On

Summer Language Intensives have a lot going on. All the time. Whether it’s lesson prep, an important conversation to be had, hunting language from elders over tea, or even just keeping the coffee station running, there’s always something that needs to be done. How does one keep everything going smoothly, especially with a larger team?… Read more »

WAYK Workshop versus Summer Language Intensive

I first met Evan and Susanna at a handful of WAYK workshops, which were each about two to five days long: three workshops at the Alaska Native Heritage Center in Anchorage and one at the Songhees Wellness Center in Victoria, BC. Because of my attendance at these workshops, I was lucky enough to find out… Read more »

Technique: Angel

Learning a language is exciting, but it can also be scary. I get nervous when I stumble over new sounds, hoping no one nearby noticed. My cheeks feel hot every time I ask someone to pronounce a word so that I can understand and copy the sounds correctly. Suddenly it feels as if my ability… Read more »

Linguistic Terminology Part 2

Read Myles’ first post about linguistic terminology here. Working in the field of linguistics over the last few years, I have noticed some divisions in terminology that I would like to highlight in this blog. As North American linguistics begins to turns away from its roots in “salvage linguistics” and more towards collaborative community-based research,… Read more »

5 Group Immersion Activities

Before I arrived at the St. Paul Unangam Tunuu Summer Language Intensive, I wondered what we would do on a typical day. I knew that there would be no teacher standing at the front of the room, no textbooks. How would we fill our time from nine to five? I discovered here a variety of… Read more »

Relaxing in Immersion

Picture this: I grab a beautiful blue egg shell, a white feather, and two model birds, and join my group at a table in the back room for immersion time. Without any discussion or planning, we five young women blow up an imaginary immersion bubble to bid farewell to English – from here on out,… Read more »

Master Teachers and Techniques

Have you ever watched a master teacher at work? As a student teacher walking into a master teacher’s classroom for the first time, it is easy to have the misconception that the students are magically doing what they are supposed to be doing. The truth is that the teacher is using techniques to seamlessly facilitate… Read more »

Latest
  • WAYK Squamish #5: “Craig’s List”, “No, not, don’t”

    [vodpod id=Video.3289465&w=425&h=350&fv=] In this video Squamish nation WAYK instructor Dustin continues leading Chinook Nation WAYK instructor Justin in a game of Squamish language WAYK. Dustin has now begun to add to the complexity of the language structure, by moving to using negation with “No, not, don’t”, as in “No, that is not a snake, that… Read more »

  • WAYK Squamish #4: “Is that your…?”, “Start at the Beginning”, “Contract Sign”

    [vodpod id=Video.3288955&w=425&h=350&fv=] In this video Squamish nation WAYK instructor Dustin continues leading Chinook Nation WAYK instructor Justin in a game of Squamish language WAYK. Dustin has now begun to add to the complexity of the language structure, by moving to the question “Is that your [object]…? Is that my [object]?”, using techniques “Contract Sign” and… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 7: Technique “Money Talks”

    WAYK Episode 7: Technique “Money Talks”. 58 minutes and 28 seconds. [direct download here] It’s tempting to dismiss the more mundane reasons for using, learning, and teaching language, but at the heart of language acquisition, you’ll find the hunger to grow up, to get the necessities of life, and start a family. [UPDATE: Here’s a… Read more »

  • WAYK Instructor Vetting: Use of the WAYK Name/Logo

    When can you use the WAYK name and logo? What do we think about you accepting money for running games of WAYK? We encourage everyone to organize free community games and play WAYK as often as possible, using the WAYK logo and name. We encourage you to organize these kinds of events in a “feast-style”,… Read more »

  • WAYK Squamish, Video #3: “Slow/Fast”, “Craig’s List: Positives”

    [vodpod id=Video.3285762&w=425&h=350&fv=] In this video Squamish nation WAYK instructor Dustin continues leading Chinook Nation WAYK instructor Justin in a game of Squamish language WAYK. To accelerate the acquisition of fluency, before making their conversation more complex, Dustin begins throwing more “techniques”, what we consider “the rules of the game”; in this case, techniques “Slow/Fast” and… Read more »

  • WAYK Squamish, Video #2: “Pull me through it!”

    [vodpod id=Video.3286281&w=425&h=350&fv=] In this video Squamish nation WAYK instructor Dustin continues leading Chinook Nation WAYK instructor Justin in a game of Squamish language WAYK. To accelerate the acquisition of fluency, before making their conversation more complex, Dustin begins throwing more “techniques”, what we consider “the rules of the game”; in this case, techniques “Pull me… Read more »

  • WAYK Squamish language: “What’s that?”

    [vodpod id=Video.3278615&w=425&h=350&fv=] more about “WAYK Squamish language: “What’s that?””, posted with vodpod   Squamish language is a very endangered indigenous language, native to Vancouver, B.C., with about only 10 fluent speakers left, all over the age of 65. “Where Are Your Keys?” is a community language revitalization method, that uses a viral, collaborative game for… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 6: Dustin Starts the Squamish Language Night

    WAYK Podcast, Episode 6: Dustin Starts the Squamish Language Night. 52 minutes and 25 seconds. [direct download here] Dustin Rivers (@dustinrivers) talks about the first WAYK Squamish language night that he hosted at his house, following up from our visit there in North Vancouver, B.C. a week ago. This night is the first of a… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 5: Revitalizing Chinuk Wawa, Part 2

    WAYK Podcast, Episode 5: Revitalizing Chinuk Wawa, Part 2. 32 minutes and 18 seconds. [direct download] [Note: Chinuk Wawa is a very endangered indigenous language native to the Pacific Northwest. Please keep in mind that we make no attempt to teach anyone to speak Chinuk Wawa by podcasting about our Chinuk nights, and during the… Read more »

  • Conversations with Remarkable Grandmothers: Want/Have/Give/Take in Arabic

    More amazing work from Jay and his grandmother, a speaker of a Palestinian dialect of arabic. If you haven’t yet, please start with his 1st video, “What is that?”, and his second video, “Craigs List Me/Mine You/Yours”. [vodpod id=Video.3264055&w=425&h=350&fv=%26rel%3D0%26border%3D0%26]

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 4: Revitalizing Chinuk Wawa

    WAYK Podcast, Episode 4: Revitalizing Chinuk Wawa. 39 minutes and 41 seconds. [direct download] [Note: Chinuk Wawa is a very endangered indigenous language native to the Pacific Northwest. Please keep in mind that we make no attempt to teach anyone to speak Chinuk Wawa by podcasting about our Chinuk nights, and during the podcast we… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 3: Debriefing the Game, Part II

    WAYK Podcast, Episode 3: Debriefing the Game, Part II. 40 minutes and 37 seconds. [direct download] As we mentioned for Episode 2, this continues a series of debriefs podcasted to give folks insight into how the game works, and how we improve the game. Big issues covered in this podcast: – Technique: “Mumble“ (where Evan… Read more »

  • Conversations with Remarkable Grandmothers

    Jay returns with his second video on “Me/mine, You/yours” with his Grandmother who speaks his heritage language, a dialect of Palestinian Arabic. Jay would love to learn it and has begun learning it using the WAYK method. Check out his first video if you haven’t already: “What is that?”. We really can’t say enough how… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 2: Debriefing the Game

    WAYK Podcast, Episode 2: Debriefing the Game. 32 minutes and 10 seconds. [direct download] We’ve decided to start sharing the debriefs of games we run with all of you in the WAYK community. This podcast really counts as Part I of a lengthy debrief we did, of our community game night at Kent’s, a WAYK… Read more »

  • Squamish Language and Holding a Regular Space for Conversation

    As we’ve mentioned before, you take the first, most critical step in revitalizing a language (or achieving any goal) by holding a regular space for conversation. The first night of the Squamish Language Team Orientation went so well that they immediately decided on a weekly night to meet. This was incredibly important. See video from… Read more »

  • WAYK Podcast, Episode 1: the Squamish Language Team Orientation

    WAYK Podcast Episode 1 “the Squamish Language Team” [direct download here] Squamish Nation member Dustin Rivers hosted us recently in Vancouver, B.C., where we helped him share the WAYK game with his community during the Squamish Language Team Orientation night. The Squamish Language team is composed of community members committed to using the WAYK game… Read more »

  • WAYK game in Sḵwxwú7mesh snichim (Squamish Language)

    [vodpod id=Video.3217710&w=425&h=350&fv=] I’ve made a short video excerpt of the game night footage I took at Dustin Rivers’ March 10th language team orientation. We’ve been working with Dustin to train him to teach his community this method of language revitalization. For you WAYK game players out there, you have the skills to easily follow along… Read more »

  • The WAYK/Squamish Language Team Project

    Evan Gardner and I recently returned to Portland, OR after being hosted in Vancouver, B.C. for three nights by Dustin Rivers, a Squamish Nation member, traditional artist, and community organizer who is passionate about the revitalization of his extremely endangered language, a language with 10-13 fluent speakers left, all over the age of 65. On… Read more »

  • WAYK is looking for a Documentary Filmmaker to Record a Revolution

    We are looking for a documentary filmmaker to help turn around the global crisis of endangered languages, by filming something truly incredible – a “Where Are Your Keys?’/Squamish Language Team partnership, that will turn around the destiny of the moribund and endangered Squamish Language (only 10-13 speakers left) in 12 weeks. This project starts April… Read more »

  • Registration now open for San Francisco WAYK April 12,13

    Last time we did a workshop in San Francisco (actually in Pleasanton, a nearby suburb) we had a fantastic time being hosted by Elisabeth Hendrickson’s Agilistry Studio team. So much so that we agreed to come back as soon as we could. Please check out her website for more info. Every time we run a… Read more »