|NWT Literacy Council||L a n g u a g e s o f t h e L a n d|
STATEMENTS BY ABORIGINAL LANGUAGE ACTIVISTS
Language - A Lost Heritage?
Sure they could talk to him about simple everyday things in their limited English, but they could not share with him the stories of his ancestors and the life they lived because he wouldn't understand it. He is missing out on learning more about himself and his people because he cannot effectively communicate with the source of this information.
I can tell him the stories in English but sometimes the richness of the history is best related in the language. Telling him about "Dene Medicine" is not the same as telling him about one explains a practice, the other defines a people's way of life. I've taken this concept away from my son by not teaching him his language.
I wish that someone had told me when my son was born to make sure I taught him his language. By not doing so, I have taken away an important part of his culture. It makes me very sad when I think about what I didn't do.
As parents, we should make every effort to teach our children their language.
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