Cree Demonstrative Pronouns by Andrea Custer (y-dialect)

Andrea Custer

Sometimes Cree language complexity makes English look impoverished. Take this lesson on demonstrative pronouns, for example, that English tries to cover with merely “this/these” and “that/those.” Thanks to Andrea Custer for permission to share this really carefully crafted lesson that shows us how much information Cree can pack into these little word forms. 

[Andrea is currently teaching and studying at First Nations University. Find more of her lessons online at]

  Animate   Inanimate  
from Speaker
singular plural singular plural
Near awa ôki ôma ôhi
Medial ana anihi anima anihi
Far nâha nêki nêma nêhi

Summary of Cree Demonstrative Pronouns

Solomon Ratt provides the following adjustments (for th-dialect): 
ôki > ôko
ôhi > ôho
ê > î (nîki, nîma, nîhi) 


Posted in Audio (y-dialect), How Cree Works, Video | Leave a comment

Orange Shirt Day 2020

tahto awâsis asitakimâw

ᑕᐦᑐ ᐊᐚᓯᐢ ᐊᓯᑕᑭᒫᐤ

Every child matters

For past posts relating to Orange Shirt day, click here

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Orange Shirt Day (30 Sept), Solomon Ratt | 1 Comment

New Moccasins for School 2020

Moccasins lovingly made by Sol’s mother for his grown-up feet, and just as lovingly worn.

kâ-kî-sipwîyôtîhoyân ayamihâwi-kiskinwahamâtowikamikohk nikî-kikiskîn nipahkîkinaskisina kâ-kî-osîhtamawit nikâwîpan. ayamihâwi-kiskinwahamâtowikamikohk nikî-mîthikawin pimipâhtâwaskisina ikwa kî-wîpinamwak nipahkîkinaskisina…namwâc mâka kî-ohci-nipahtâwak okâwîmâw-sâkihitowin.

ᑳ ᑮ ᓯᐿᔫᑏᐦᐅᔮᐣ ᐊᔭᒥᐦᐋᐏ ᑭᐢᑭᓌᐦᐊᒫᑐᐏᑲᒥᑯᕽ ᓂᑮ ᑭᑭᐢᑮᐣ ᓂᐸᐦᑮᑭᓇᐢᑭᓯᓇ ᑳ ᑮ ᐅᓰᐦᑕᒪᐏᐟ ᓂᑳᐑᐸᐣ᙮ ᐊᔭᒥᐦᐋᐏ ᑭᐢᑭᓌᐦᐊᒫᑐᐏᑲᒥᑯᕽ ᓂᑮ ᒦᖨᑲᐏᐣ ᐱᒥᐹᐦᑖᐘᐢᑭᓯᓇ ᐃᑿ ᑮ ᐑᐱᓇᒷᐠ ᓂᐸᐦᑮᑭᓇᐢᑭᓯᓇ᙮..ᓇᒹᐨ ᒫᑲ ᑮ ᐅᐦᒋ ᓂᐸᐦᑖᐘᐠ ᐅᑳᐑᒫᐤ ᓵᑭᐦᐃᑐᐏᐣ᙮

Off to residential school I proudly wore my new moccasins lovingly made by my mother. At the school they gave me a pair of runners and threw away my moccasins….but they never killed a Mother’s love.

New moccasins, 2020, lovingly made by Sol’s sisters to copy the style of the worn out pair made by their mother.

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Solomon Ratt | 2 Comments

2021 Calendar: Solomon Ratt, y- and th-dialects

2021 Cree Calendar – A gift for all of us from Solomon Ratt.

Click here to download a copy you can print for yourself! Cree Language Calendar 2021

Note that the PDF pages are designed for legal size paper (8.5×14″). We like to ask the printer for 24lb paper, and add a spiral binding across the top.

Besides the PDF for download, we are also presenting the calendar as a gallery of individual pages:

  • Click on the forward and back arrows to find the month you want;
  • Right-click on the image to view it at full size.

You can also listen as Sol reads the the text shown on various calendar pages in the following audio file. Both y- and th-dialect variants are included.

If you scroll past the page images, you will also find recordings of standard calendar terms, including months, days of the week and moon phases (in y- and th-dialects).

Continue reading

Posted in Audio (th-dialect), Audio (y-dialect), Calendar, Printable | Leave a comment

New nêhiyawêwin Classroom Materials from Blue Quills

What a fabulous surprise to receive this treasure in the mail from University nuhelot’įne thaiyots’į nistameyimâkanak Blue Quills and its Cree Language Program Language Resource Developer, Tina Wellman. A tremendous amount of work has gone into creating this collection:

Cree classroom teachers will be especially pleased with the UnBQ Lesson Plan Kit ($40) that includes:

  • Flash cards (photographic, full-colour ~ 5×7″)
  • Memory game cards (that can also be used for “Go Fish”)
  • 2 Lesson Plan books (12 lessons each, including vocabulary, activities and games)
    • wâposo-tâpakwêwin (Rabbit Snaring)
    • pipon mîciwin êkwa pipon mêtawêwina (Winter Food and Winter Games)
  • USB stick loaded with
    • printable/handout material
    • 4 videos that compliment lesson plans and handouts.
  • Be sure to ask about corresponding storybooks, which are sold separately.

A complete set of the twelve newest books can also be purchased as a set for $40.

A complete catalog list (including grade level and pricing) can be found here:

Send your orders (and questions) by email to: Be sure to include your name and address!

(Note: Cree Literacy Network is not involved in sale or distribution of these materials, but sends warm congratulations to all involved in their creation.)

Posted in Books for Kids, Cree Books, Resource Catalogs | Leave a comment

A man who cooks: Wayne Jackson (y-dialect)

Some universal truths are worth re-stating in Cree. This is one Dorothy Thunder and I both happen to endorse with a big “tâpwê êêêê wâhay wâhay!”

Thank you, Wayne Jackson, for letting me share it, and adding audio. Hope it gets those irresistible men some of the attention they deserve! lol! 

nâpêw kâ-nihtâ-piminawasot ê-akâwâtiht; mâka nâpêw kâ-kâsiyâkanêt sôskwâc namoya ê-kî-nakinisohk

ᓈᐯᐤ ᑳ ᓂᐦᑖ ᐱᒥᓇᐘᓱᐟ ᐁ ᐊᑳᐚᑎᐦᐟ; ᒫᑲ ᓈᐯᐤ ᑳ ᑳᓯᔮᑲᓀᐟ ᓲᐢᒁᐨ ᓇᒧᔭ ᐁ ᑮ ᓇᑭᓂᓱᕽ

A man who cooks is attractive; A man who does the dishes is irresistible. 


Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Wayne (Goodspirit) Jackson | 1 Comment

Covid Safety Reminder: Solomon Ratt (y-dialect)


kikiskamohkan âkohkwênikanêkin: kihcêyim kiwîci-ayisiyiniw kâ-itohtêyan ayisiyinînahk.

ᑭᑭᐢᑲᒧᐦᑲᐣ ᐋᑯᐦᑵᓂᑲᓀᑭᐣ: ᑭᐦᒉᔨᒼ ᑭᐑᒋ ᐊᔨᓯᔨᓂᐤ ᑳ ᐃᑐᐦᑌᔭᐣ ᐊᔨᓯᔨᓃᓇᕽ᙮

Wear mouth covering: be considerate of people when you go out where people are. 

(Since the jury is still out on a suitable word for mouth-and-nose covering mask, Sol has gone with the verb for covering.) We all know the principle! Stay safe! 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hot off the Press: Pocket Plains Cree for Kids and Parents (Solomon Ratt: y-dialect)

The latest language preservation publication from Patricia Ningewance Nadeau’s Mazinaate Inc will soon be a must-have all across the prairies. I was proud to pick up mine straight from the publisher last night. 

Pocket Plains Cree for Kids and Parents: A Phrasebook for Nearly All Occasions, is full of useful phrases and vocabulary for parents and children talking, learning, feeling and playing together at home, on the land, at the powwow, or out in the big wide world. Filled with Plains Cree content provided by Solomon Ratt, you know it’s gonna be great! 

Not yet listed on the Mazinaate website, the book sells for $20 plus postage.

To order:
Send an Email with your name and postal address to:

They will be in touch. 

This new title is modelled closely after the popular Pocket Ojibwe for Kids and Parentswritten by Winnipeg’s Trevor Greyeyes and Maeengan Linklater, and translated into Ojibwe by Patricia Ningewance Nadeau. 


(Even more great news from Pat: The adult version Pocket Cree translated by Dorothy Thunder will be coming out by Christmas. Watch for it!) 

Posted in Uncategorized | 4 Comments

Overcoming Erasure: Wayne Jackson (y-dialect)

kêkâc ê-kî-wanihtâyahk kinêhiyawinaw mâka sohkâtisiwin ê-kî-miyikôsiyahk. kâwi ka-pasakônênaw anima kêkâc kâ-kî-kâsêhâhkik.

ᑫᑳᐨ ᐁ ᑮ ᐘᓂᐦᑖᔭᕽ ᑭᓀᐦᐃᔭᐏᓇᐤ ᒫᑲ ᓱᐦᑳᑎᓯᐏᐣ ᐁ ᑮ ᒥᔨᑰᓯᔭᕽ᙮ ᑳᐏ ᑲ ᐸᓴᑰᓀᓇᐤ ᐊᓂᒪ ᑫᑳᐨ ᑳ ᑮ ᑳᓭᐦᐋᐦᑭᐠ᙮

A powerful observation for National Indigenous People’s Day 2020. Thanks, Wayne! 

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), National Indigenous People's Day, Wayne (Goodspirit) Jackson | Leave a comment

National Indigenous People’s Day 2020 (Solomon Ratt, th-dialect)

kâwitha nakata ithiniwâtisiwin:
kapî ka-wîcîwikon;
kapî ka-wîcihikon.

tîpithahk acithaw nakata wanîwitowin:

kipihtowîwinihk ka-pihtawâwak kitâniskô-wâhkômâkaninawak


ᑳᐏᖬ ᓇᑲᑕ ᐃᖨᓂᐚᑎᓯᐏᐣ:
ᑲᐲ ᑲ ᐑᒌᐏᑯᐣ;
ᑲᐲ ᑲ ᐑᒋᐦᐃᑯᐣ᙮

ᑏᐱᖬᕽ ᐊᒋᖬᐤ ᓇᑲᑕ ᐘᓃᐏᑐᐏᐣ:

ᑭᐱᐦᑐᐑᐏᓂᕽ ᑲ ᐱᐦᑕᐚᐘᐠ ᑭᑖᓂᐢᑰ ᐚᐦᑰᒫᑲᓂᓇᐘᐠ
ᐄ ᐋᒐᖫᑳᑎᑯᔭᐦᒁᐤ᙮


Don’t leave First Nations traditions behind:
They will always accompany you;
They will always help you.

Just for a bit leave the noisy confusion behind:
Be quiet!

In the silence you will hear Our ancestors
Telling us sacred stories.

It is quiet and peaceful.

Click for past posts in honour of National Indigenous People’s Day:

Posted in Audio (th-dialect), National Indigenous People's Day, Solomon Ratt | Leave a comment