By Justin Neely, CPN Language Director

In these trying times, our language department has definitely been affected. We went into quarantine due to contact with a person who had firsthand contact with COVID-19, but we are back in the office and have been busy in the language department. We have been posting lessons online. We have done a number of online classes as well as participating in our virtual Family Reunion Festival and virtual Potawatomi Gathering.

I have had a number of people ask about when we would resume on-site classes. Right now, I would like to be cautious. I do not want to get any of our precious elders or others sick. So for now, we do have a number of online options for learning.

Check out our online dictionary that contains over 9,000 words. We have an online, self-paced Potawatomi language course available on Moodle. If you have access to Facebook, we have a Facebook page called Potawatomi Language where we post updates, classes, videos and talk about all things Potawatomi language. We also have two YouTube channels with hundreds of videos — one for kids and another for adults. Our Memrise website has three different courses that you can study from, as well. Lastly, we have two Quizlet tools filled with many vocabulary study sets.

If you have not checked it out already, we also have Gulliver’s Travels, the hour-long cartoon version you can watch all in Potawatomi with subtitles on YouTube:

The Pokagon Potawatomi have a course available on Mango for learning our language. They also have an app on the Google Play store called Bodwèwadmimwen for learning basic Potawatomi words/phrases in categories.

Mango Potawatomi course:

We have been working on some new videos as well. We plan on having another fun movie all in the language ready by Halloween. We have also began working again on our Mtek Wigwam kids show; so we hope to have some of those out in the next couple of months.

Our online high school course has really grown this year. We are currently offering a high school course anywhere in Oklahoma for world language credit used towards graduation. Maud, Tecumseh, Shawnee and Wanette Public Schools are currently offering it. One student at Arizona State University is taking our collegiate course.

Our staff recently had the opportunity to participate in an online grammar course taught by Lindsay Marean (CPN member) and offered by the Prairie Band Language Department. Igwien (heartfelt thanks) to both Lindsay and the Prairie Band Language Department for allowing us to participate.