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Why Non-Indigenous Alaskans Need to Care about Indigenous Languages

Note from Myles: This post is directed towards Alaskan readers of the WAYK blog.  In 2014, 20 Indigenous languages were made official languages of the State of Alaska. For many Indigenous speakers and learners, this was an important shift in Alaska’s history. This act is just a small piece of a larger movement that is… Read more »

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Technique: Lie to Me

Imagine you are doing a lesson that might only be true for some people in your group. For example, if you are leading a lesson on brothers and sisters, and several of your learners are only children, how do you include them into the activity? Although it might not be true that they have “one… Read more »

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Blending WAYK and Tandem Language Learning

This post explores how blending Where Are Your Keys techniques into a tandem language learning model could support and improve learning. Due to the number of WAYK Techniques I will reference, I will assume you have some familiarity or can access the technique glossary and other blog posts on the website. In tandem language learning,… Read more »

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Technique: Mumble

Technique: Mumble In the movie Finding Nemo an adventurous young fish wishes to break free from the strict world his father constructed under the reef. During a school field trip, he escapes and swims into the open ocean. Nemo eventually gets lost and finds himself in Australia. Without the support of adults, Nemo has to rely… Read more »

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Robbie’s 2018 Update from Trevelin, Esquel, & Bariloche

Here’s Robbie Penman’s update from the spring of 2018, several months after his summer with WAYK on St. Paul Island, Alaska. Thanks for the update, Robbie! In April, me and Caoife left Melipüllü, a.k.a. Puerto Montt (I’d been there for about three months, helping the local language revitalization team) for Argentina. We took a bit… Read more »

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The Best Part of Myles’ Summer 2017

My favorite part of the WAYK Summer Language Intensive on St. Paul Island has been getting to witness an amazing team of young people who are taking language revitalization into their own hands. I feel very lucky to have been able to learn from the Unangam Tunuu language team and to witness their many years… Read more »

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Mary’s Favorite Thing from the 2017 Summer Language Intensive

My favorite thing from the 2017 Summer Language Intensive on St. Paul Island was becoming more comfortable learning and teaching language in immersion, by which I mean staying in the target language and avoiding English. In the past, I tended to divide language learning and language use. There is an essay by Greg Thomson, “Leave… Read more »

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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 »

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Introducing the WAYKcast!

We are happy to share the first episode of season one of the WAYKcast, a new podcast from WAYK about language revitalization, language learning, and Where Are Your Keys. In each episode, Sky Hopinka will talk with members of the WAYK team and the wider WAYK community. Episodes will focus on broad and focused questions… Read more »

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Birds of St. Paul Island

This year the WAYK Summer Language Intensive is taking place on St. Paul Island, Alaska (Tanax̂ Amix̂ in Unangam Tunuu), nicknamed the “Galapagos of the North”, a name true to the beauty and diversity of the flora and fauna here. St. Paul Island is a small island in the Bering Sea off the western coast… Read more »

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Learning a Language While “Low on Spoons”

If you read many of the WAYK blog posts, you may notice that language learning is a dynamic process that includes dozens of learning techniques, process tools, and juggling short-term and long-term planning. A day in the life of a summer language intensive is packed with scheduling, language hunting, taking care of administrative tasks, cleaning… Read more »

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Layering WAYK with Other Immersion Methods

I was first acquainted with WAYK in 2015, attending a Lingít language circle put on at the University of Alaska Anchorage. I really liked the technique as a way to make language learning fun and to facilitate immersion in a language circle setting. After being introduced to WAYK, I worked at the Alaska Native Heritage… Read more »

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There Is No Why

David Edwards has worked with WAYK at several summer revitalization programs. He works as a software engineer in New York City and spends most of his time pulling language from unsuspecting passersby. Last year, I spent a few months working in Washington D.C. with a coworker who spoke fluent French. I spoke no French at… Read more »

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VIDEO: Irish Language (Gaeilge) 1

[vimeo=19896067] For anyone who has either been to a WAYK workshop, language night, or mastered the WAYK tutorial, you can copy-cat along with this video and learn some Irish language, known in America as Irish Gaelic, and in Ireland as Irish or Gaeilge.   You may note that we haven’t completely made up our mind… Read more »