November 30, 2012

Navajo Keyboard app

Navajo Keyboard App Now Available for Apple iPhone and iPad

By Levi RickertThanks to the groundbreaking efforts of Native Innovation, Inc., an American Indian owned and veteran small business from Arizona, Apple users can now download the Navajo Keyboard app for their iPhones and iPads through iTunes.

The application became available earlier this month and is free.

The Navajo Keyboard makes it possible for users to type in and removes many of the frustrations that users have with typing the Navajo language using the default iPhone and iPad keyboard.

This application places an extra row of keys on its keyboard, allowing you access to specific Navajo characters without depressing the letter. A slide bar is included that you can turn on and off to transition between your Navajo keyboard and the default iPhone and iPad keyboard.

November 22, 2012

Lakota Language Revitalization Initiative

Native Sun News: New Oglala leader announces language plan

By Brandon EcoffeyThe newly elected Oglala Sioux tribal president is calling his new policy the “Presidential Lakota Language Revitalization Initiative.”

In a statement released just prior to the formal Nov. 15 address, Brewer said: “I believe that the continued survival of the Lakota people—spiritually, culturally and politically is contingent on the survival of our language. As the incoming President of the Oglala Sioux Tribe I will not waste time debating the need. We will move with purpose and conviction and all of our resources to address this challenge.”

The initiative identified by Brewer will focus on four elements that his administration has identified as necessary for success if the initiative is going to be sustainable. The first being involvement by the tribe in the mobilization and coordination of existing resources, leading to the development of new resources to help revitalize the language.

Secondly, the initiative calls for the identification of fluent Lakota language speakers. Brewer hopes to involve them in the process of language revitalization as well as provide compensation for their efforts.

Thirdly, that the Oglala Sioux Tribe advocate at the federal, state and executive—meaning the White House—levels on behalf of Lakota language.

The final element of Brewer’s plan is the involvement of educational institutions across the reservation in the process. The extremely progressive plan by Brewer is the first of its kind in the region.
Below:  "The Oglala Sioux Tribe’s president-elect, first-time politician Bryan Brewer, speaks Nov. 15 during the opening of the fifth annual Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Language Summit in Rapid City. Brewer unveiled a monumental—and unprecedented—policy that seeks to address renewal of the Lakota language on the Pine Ridge Reservation." (Ardis McRae)

November 16, 2012

5th annual Lakota Language Summit

Fight to save tribal languages topic of summitCarlow and his group’s annual Lakota, Dakota, Nakota Language Summit brings together hundreds of tribal members and tribal educators from all over the U.S. to share best practices and techniques for improving language fluency. The summit is expected to draw as many as 800 people this year.

This is the fifth year for the event. Participants include Sioux tribes from North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Nebraska, Montana and Canada, as well as tribes from other parts of the country.

The effort expands beyond the Oglala Sioux. More than 20 tribes are represented, including the Standing Rock Sioux, the Winnebago, the Cree and the Dine Nation.

“It’s not to push one way or one method or one orthography or one curriculum. (It’s) to bring everyone together to share so that we can all be exposed to what’s out there—what strategies, what methods, what resources, technologies are out there,” Carlow said.

Tribal members can take the different approaches back home and add to what they are already doing successfully, he added.
Brewer pledges to preserve Lakota language

By Andrea J. CookA retired educator, Brewer, 65, addressed the fifth annual Lakota Language Summit, being held in Rapid City at Best Western Ramkota Hotel. Representatives of 23 Lakota-, Dakota- and Nakota-speaking tribes from 11 states and three Canadian provinces are at the summit.

This is a turning point in history for the Seven Council Fires, Brewer said, referring to the seven major divisions of the Sioux Nation.

One year ago, the state and national alliances to save Native languages declared the Lakota language in a state of emergency. An action plan was suggested to the Oglala Sioux Tribe, Brewer said.

“The OST tribal council executive committee did absolutely nothing to address this growing emergency. They wasted an entire year,” Brewer said.

The tribe has pushed off the urgency to preserve the language for a long time, Brewer said. It has been talked about and then ignored, he said.

As tribal president, Brewer intends to lead a Lakota Language Revitalization Initiative that will focus on the creation and operation of Lakota language immersion schools and identifying all fluent Lakota speakers.
Below:  "Fred Stands, left, talks with Bryan Brewer, president-elect of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, on Thursday before the Lakota Language Summit at the Ramkota Best Western Hotel. Stands and Brewer lived in a dormitory together at Holy Rosary Mission on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation." (Benjamin Brayfield/Rapid City Journal)