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The Danger of Putting Endangered Languages on a “Shelf”

What does it mean to revitalize a language? What does it mean to secure its existence for the next generation of speakers? What does this look like and why is it important? As a Native person who is deeply concerned about the future of my heritage language, Tewa, these are the types of questions I… Read more »

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WAYK proves I’m not a language-learning dud!

When the community we planned to start working with in late May 2014 had its funding temporarily delayed, Evan and I decided to make the most of our free time and the +1500-km drive I had made from Edmonton to the Pacific Northwest. I met him in his hometown in rural Oregon, and we spent the next 10 days using Where Are Your Keys? Techniques to… Read more »

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What it’s like to be a WAYK Intern

Interning: do anything and everything #forthelanguage! Explaining what it’s like to be a WAYK intern is no easy task. To be perfectly honest, I really had no idea what I was in for when I boarded the plane that would take me to St. Paul Island, Alaska. Even once I figured out what I was… Read more »

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Call for WAYK Summer 2016 Interns!

This summer, we are very lucky to again be able to offer three WAYK internship opportunities.  These positions are sponsored by our host community (Atka, Alaska) in partnership with APIA and a number of other regional organizations. Participating in a WAYK summer project is one of the best ways to be fully immersed in another… Read more »

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Report from the Road: Port Graham (Spring 2015)

The WAYK team made our first trip to Port Graham, Alaska in May of 2015. During a five-day workshop we introduced Port Graham’s Sugt’stun speakers, learners, and teachers to Where Are Your Keys? techniques. At the time, the community of Port Graham was in their second year of a three-year project funded by an ANA… Read more »

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Report from the Road: Alaska Native Heritage Center

The WAYK team returned to the Alaska Native Heritage Center in late April for a week-long workshop. The ANHC has hosted WAYK on several occasions over the past four years, and this time the workshop was for speakers and learners of Yup’ik and Inupiaq as they embark on a three-year language project funded by the… Read more »

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Pedagogy Rusticatio with WAYK

We are pleased to share a gorgeous new video by Sky Hopinka, WAYK team member and a truly stellar filmmaker. Sky’s film is about how classroom teachers can strengthen one of the most misunderstood endangered languages…Latin. In July 2014, Sky traveled with WAYK to West Virginia to document the second annual Pedagogy Rusticatio, a program… Read more »

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It Takes Two to Tango

(by WAYK intern David Edwards) I had an epiphany yesterday. This Saturday, Sky and I are flying to China to help an NGO in Beijing run a summer WAYK training for local migrant English teachers. It’s been just over a year since I got back from China, and I’ve been absolutely giddy to get back… Read more »

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Squamish Language Revitalization

About a year ago we partnered with Dustin Rivers, to train him and his community in WAYK and support the revitalization of the Squamish Language. Squamish Nation is located in British Columbia, Canada. A few months ago Dustin began spear-heading weekly WAYK Squamish language classes. Dustin adapted the Zero to Intermediate scale to the Squamish… Read more »

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Learning a Language vs. Creating a Language Community

    There are a lot of people doing good work in language education; and you can find many talented language learners and polyglots. There are countless resources to learn a language out there, whether immersion programs, classes, software, CD sets, podcasts, online language mentoring forums, and on and on. We respect and value all these… Read more »

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Language Hunting in Latin

[vimeo http://vimeo.com/15491950] In this video you’ll see footage of the September 2010 Latin WAYK Weekend Workshop at Wyoming Catholic College in Lander, WY. Towards the end of the weekend at a typical WAYK workshop, the steadily improving language hunters participate in the “Tea with Grandma” scenario, where attendees hunt language from fluent elders with no… Read more »

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Can WAYK Revitalize Latin Too?

This September 23, 24, and 25, Evan Gardner and Willem Larsen will be holding a WAYK workshop at Wyoming Catholic College in Lander, Wyoming. Believe it or not, Latin still has a living tradition of daily conversational vitality, as carried through the centuries in the church and monasteries. Latin is the official language of the… Read more »

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Help “Where Are Your Keys?” Help the World

Thank you to everyone playing WAYK, and for getting the word out about the Fluency Revolution. Please keep it up – we’re making progress, but aren’t quite there yet. We’re realizing that the greatest obstacle to our mission at this time is funding. We believe that once we’re fully funded, we can help communities turn… Read more »

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Deep Breaths. And a Long View.

I’d like to say I’ve gotten better at not panicking when I hear of a language struggling. While mostly true, I still have a reaction – it now just feels like a dull ache in my gut, and a fluttering of my heart. It’s an odd feeling we have here, on the WAYK team, especially… Read more »

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“Save Your Language” WAYK conference in Vancouver B.C., June 5th and 6th

Evan Gardner and Willem Larsen will be traveling to Vancouver, B.C., this June 5th and 6th, for a WAYK language revitalization training weekend amongst  a diverse community of B.C. First Nations. If you’ve wanted to learn the “Where Are Your Keys?” method of community mentoring, then this is your chance. Registration for this 2 day… Read more »

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Revitalizing Language With Young Children

[vodpod id=Video.3385353&w=425&h=350&fv=] What does it take to involve young children in the community-wide game of WAYK language revitalization? Well, it can be as simple as allowing them to watch the game out of the corner of their eye, while doing their own thing, and intermittently joining in. If you can commit to holding a regular… Read more »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »

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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 »