January 13, 2009

When It's Gone It's Gone recognized

Norman students hope film helps rescue native tongues

Norman club interviewed tribal elders for award-winning language documentaryA documentary about the dying languages of American Indian tribes has received state honors for a group of Norman students, and is being used in classrooms as a teaching tool.

Students in Norman High School’s Native American Club were recognized recently by state Education Department officials for their documentary, titled "When It’s Gone, It’s Gone.”

The students interviewed tribal elders representing American Indian tribes in Oklahoma and asked them about their native languages and the struggle to keep their languages and cultures alive.

Most of the elders on the video are in their 80s and have witnessed the languages of their tribes dying out as the younger generations were raised in an English-speaking society.

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