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Youngsters Learn Some Hul’qumi’num, Choctaw

This year, Beecher Bay (a.k.a. Scia’new) First Nation great grandmother Lee Charles started teaching Hul’qumi’num (a Coast Salish language) to 4th and 5th graders at Hans Helgesen Elementary School in British Columbia to non-Native and Native students alike (including her granddaughter, Danielle Charles-Horne). Charles was first asked to teach by Principal Julia Sahota. Though non-Native, vice principal Sue Tonnesen learned the value of teaching Native languages and cultures by raising her son in a Native reserve, where he learned Gitxsanimaax (a Tsimshianic language) at a French immersion school.

Choctaw storyteller, Greg Rodgers, recited and acted out American Indian themed stories to youngsters yesterday at Edmond Library in Oklahoma, to help kick off the Metropolitan Library System’s summer reading program. Rodgers often draws influence from oral and written stories of Choctaw elders and members of other tribes such as the Lakota.

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