February 16, 2013

Yurok language in schools

Yurok language being revivedLast fall, Eureka High became the fifth and largest school in Northern California to offer a Yurok-language program, marking the latest victory in a Native American language-revitalization program widely lauded as the most successful in the state.

At last count, there were more than 300 basic Yurok speakers, 60 with intermediate skills, 37 who are advanced and 17 who are considered conversationally fluent.

If all goes as planned, Lewis' 20 students will move on to a second year of study, satisfying the world language requirement for admission to University of California and Cal State schools.

But the teacher and tribe have some longer-term goals: boosting Native American high school graduation rates and college admissions numbers; deepening the Yurok youths' bonds to their culture; and ensuring that their language will regain prominence after half a century of virtual silence.

February 10, 2013

Ladies Cherokee syllabary watch

Ladies Cherokee Syllabary Watch Available for Valentine's DayLooking for a “timely” gift for that special lady in your life? The Cherokee Nation has got you covered—with a stylish wristwatch that features a Cherokee syllabary motif.

“This one of a kind watch is another way we’re working to promote Cherokee culture to a modern audience,” said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker in a press release. “Continuing to use the Cherokee syllabary is an important part of preserving our history and language.”

The silver watch features the Cherokee Nation logo and seven-pointed star under the watch hands. The numbers are represented in the Cherokee language around the dial. The watch sells for $85 and is available at the Cherokee Gift Shop in Tahlequah, Oklahoma as well as in the Cherokee Art Gallery at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Tulsa, Oklahoma and online at CherokeeGiftShop.com.