April 20, 2007

I heart language revitalisation

Today we recorded my little banji reading a Marra story that goes like this:


Nana ninya manabarru.
Wagmin nana manabarru.
Wiji gana wa-jinja nana ninya.
Gana nyardin-gugi, wagmin.
Nana ninya manabarru, marluy gana ngalgi-wugi. Marluy. Guda.

These words were spoken by FR and we turned it into a little storybook that we have been using in the school program. A translation of the story is:


This is a buffalo.
The buffalo is black.
It eats grass.
It's skin is black.
The buffalo doesn't have a skin name (subsection). Nothing. That's all.

My little banji, JF, is about 12 and he read the story pretty well. It's pretty special for a 12 year old kid to be able to read that story in a language which is only spoken by a few old people.

Lots of credit to the Marra team here at Ngukurr who do a wonderful job. I heart language revitalisation.


Sophie said...

I heart that Olgaman for her tireless thirty years of teaching students and linguists alike. And I heart the Ngukurr Language Centre too.

Anonymous said...

That's great!