Abstract

Abstract:

In 2006 the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe took on efforts to improve Lakota/Dakota language teaching in K-12 schools. These efforts have included collaborating with the Lakota Language Consortium to create classroom materials and language-learning resources, partnering with Sitting Bull College to develop various language-teaching and language-learning programs for adults, and coordinating among the K-12 schools on the reservation to ensure students receive better Lakota/Dakota language instruction. While the efforts to improve language education in K-12 schools have not achieved the kinds of proficiency-based results originally anticipated, they have enhanced the way Lakota/Dakota is taught and have instigated significant changes in how Lakota/Dakota language learning is conceived of in the community. Based on data from participant observation and interviews with program directors and teachers, this article provides a bird's-eye view of these efforts, which have formed the beginning of Standing Rock's recent, and growing, Indigenous language revitalization movement.

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