Stay home: Learn Cree – 9. A story about social isolation

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from Sol’s existing teaching library, and the teaching libraries of some of his friends. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Social isolation has its pros and cons as we see in today’s story, previously published in Solomon Ratt’s book “Woods Cree Stories” published by University of Regina Press in 2014). This is the original version (the one in the book is somewhat expanded). Text and artwork by Sol, except for screens, 2, 9, 10 and 11 which were done by Sol’s son, Jesse Carpenter.


 

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | Leave a comment

Stay home: Learn Cree – 8. Sing with Art Napoleon

While we’re all in isolation, we’re trying to try to post one video a day from Sol and his fellow Cree teachers. Some from his existing teaching library – and some brand new. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Today, Art Napoleon shares this upbeat greeting tune from his môcikan nêhiyawewin album of Cree-teaching songs for kids (of all ages). This one models basic greetings beautifully, and it’s fun to sing. (You can find the whole album at CD Baby: https://store.cdbaby.com/cd/artnapoleon). 

tânisi mâka: Art Napoleon (northern y-dialect)

 

tânisi mâka kiya anohc
tânisi mâka kiya anohc
moy nânitaw pêyakwân niya
moy nânitaw pêyakwân niya
miywâsin (miywâsin) ôma (ôma)
miywâsin ôma kîsikaw.

Roughly translated:

How are you today?
Nothing new – same as always, me.
This is a beautiful day.

Dialect notes:
For th-dialect, replace every bolded y with th. Replace every ê with î
For n-dialect, replace every bolded y with n

Fund a bunch more Cree-teaching songs here:  “Songs for Kids

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | Leave a comment

Covid-19 Info in Cree and English from Simon Bird (th-dialect)

Thanks to Simon Bird (#creesimonsays) for preparing this video aimed at fluent speakers, but including good English content as well. As a former chief, Simon has direct information from Lac La Ronge Indian Band (LLRIB) emergency response team. As a born teacher, he presents it compellingly, and with a bit of laughter.

[Auntie Helen is here with us in isolation. She’s making 10 pahkwêsikanak right now so she can measure her social distancing!]

Stay tuned right to the end for bonus material: How to use rat root and make cedar tea!

Follow Simon’s 7am daily video updates on FaceBook in the group #CreeSimonSays https://www.facebook.com/groups/380099328844547/ (It’s a private group, so you’ll need to ask for membership first.)

Posted in Audio (th-dialect), Indigenous Knowledge (Science), Plants and Medicine, Simon Bird (#CreeSimonSays), Video | Leave a comment

Stay home: Learn Cree – 7. Kinship Terms

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from Sol’s existing teaching library. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Today we’ve got two videos about kinship terms. The first, from Sol’s friend Grace Ithiniw Iskwêw, is child-friendly. In the second, Sol himself gives a much bigger picture of kinship terms. 

Grace is a speaker of Woodland Cree (th-dialect) from Barren Lands FN: Brochet, Manitoba. She is a mother of six, a Cree teacher with Brandon School Division, and she’s working on her MA at Brandon University. Her family continues to live off the land up north, along Reindeer Lake.  Her students – currently her captive audience – are her children. You can find more of her videos on Youtube.

Sol’s video gives us a much longer list of kinship terms, presenting each form with different possessors (mine, yours, his/hers) and a view into some of the amazing complexity of the Cree kinship system.  (Scroll down to see the complete chart – you might like to print one out to follow along!) 

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Kinship, Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | 2 Comments

Stay home: Learn Cree – 6. A Prayer to the Four Directions (th, y-dialects)

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from Sol’s existing teaching library. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Responding to a comment from a reader, today we’ve got a prayer to the four directions, previously posted in August 2018.  Just audio, today, but with the text providing for printing to read along. 

th-dialect:

kisîmanitow, kinanâskomitin kotak kîsikâw î-mithiyan

mâci-kîsikanohk isi nimawimôstamowâw mikisiw-ahcahk kita-nâkatawîthimât oskawâsisa ikwa kita-mîthit sîpîthihtamowin. nipakitinâw cistîmâw;

sâwanohk isi nimawimôstamowâw âpakosîs-ahcahk kita-nâkatawîthimât oskâya ikwa kita-mîthit kisîwâtisowin. nipakitinîn paskwâwihkaskwa;

pahkisimonihk isi nimawimôstamowâw paskwâwimostos-ahcahk kita-nâkatawîthimât okîsohpikiwa ikwa kita-mîthit sîpiyawîsiwin. nipakitinîn wîhkaskwa;

kîwîtinohk isi nimawimôstamowâw maskwa-ahcahk kita-nâkatawîthimât kîhtiyaya ikwa kita-mîthit sâkihitowin. nipakitinîn mâsikîsk.

sawîthimik kahkithaw niwâhkômâkanak, hay-hay.

ᑭᓰᒪᓂᑐᐤ, ᑭᓇᓈᐢᑯᒥᑎᐣ ᑯᑕᐠ ᑮᓯᑳᐤ ᐄᒥᐟᐦᐃᔭᐣ

ᒫᒋᑮᓯᑲᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᒥᑭᓯᐘᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐑᐟᐦᐃᒫᐟ ᐅᐢᑲᐚᓯᓴ ᐃᑿ ᑭᑕᒦᐟᐦᐃᐟ ᓰᐲᐟᐦᐃᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ. ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓈᐤ ᒋᐢᑏᒫᐤ;

ᓵᐘᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᐋᐸᑯᓰᓴᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐑᐟᐦᐃᒫᐟ ᐅᐢᑳᔭ ᐃᑿ ᑭᑕᒦᐟᐦᐃᐟ ᑭᓰᐚᑎᓱᐏᐣ. ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓃᐣ ᐸᐢᒁᐏᐦᑲᐢᑿ;

ᐸᐦᑭᓯᒧᓂᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᐸᐢᒁᐏᒧᐢᑐᓴᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐑᐟᐦᐃᒫᐟ ᐅᑮᓱᐦᐱᑭᐘ ᐃᑿ ᑭᑕᒦᐟᐦᐃᐟ ᓰᐱᔭᐑᓯᐏᐣ. ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓃᐣ ᐑᐦᑲᐢᑿ;

ᑮᐑᑎᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᒪᐢᑿᐊᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐑᐟᐦᐃᒫᐟ ᑮᐦᑎᔭᔭ ᐃᑿ ᑭᑕᒦᐟᐦᐃᐟ ᓵᑭᐦᐃᑐᐏᐣ. ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓃᐣ ᒫᓯᑮᐢᐠ.

ᓴᐑᐟᐦᐃᒥᐠ ᑲᐦᑭᐟᐦᐊᐤ ᓂᐚᐦᑰᒫᑲᓇᐠ, ᐊᕀᐦᐊᕀ.

Creator, I thank you for another day.

To the East I pray to the Eagle Spirit to take care of the newborns and to give me patience.
I set down tobacco;
To the South I pray to the Mouse Spirit to take care of the youth and to give me kindness.
I set down sage;
To the West I pray to the Buffalo Spirit to take care of the adults and to give me tolerance.
I set down sweet grass;
To the North I pray to the Bear Spirit to take care of the Elders and to give me love.
I set down cedar.
Bless all my relatives, hay-hay.

[y-dialect:] 

kisêmanitow, kinanâskomitin kotak kîsikâw ê-miyiyan 

sâkâstênohk isi nimawimôstamowâw mikisiw-ahcahk kita-nâkatawêyimât oskawâsisa êkwa kita-miyit sîpêyihtamowin.
nipakitinâw cistêmâw;

sâwanohk
 isi nimawimôstamowâw âpakosîs-ahcahk kita-nâkatawêyimât oskâya êkwa kita-miyit kisêwâtisiwin.
nipakitinên paskwâwihkaskwa;

pahkisimotâhk
 isi nimawimôstamowâw paskwâwimostos-ahcahk kita-nâkatawêyimât okîsohpikiwa êkwa kita-miyit sîpiyawêsiwin.
nipakitinên wîhkaskwa;

kîwêtinohk
 isi nimawimôstamowâw maskwa-ahcahk kita-nâkatawêyimât kêhtê-aya êkwa kita-miyit sâkihitowin.
nipakitinên mâsikîsk.

sawêyimik kahkiyaw niwâhkômâkanak, hay-hay.

ᑭᓭᒪᓂᑐᐤ, ᑭᓇᓈᐢᑯᒥᑎᐣ ᑯᑕᐠ ᑮᓯᑳᐤ ᐁᒥᔨᔭᐣ

ᓵᑳᐢᑌᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᒥᑭᓯᐘᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐍᔨᒫᐟ ᐅᐢᑲᐚᓯᓴ ᐁᑿ ᑭᑕᒥᔨᐟ ᓰᐯᔨᐦᑕᒧᐏᐣ.
ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓈᐤ ᒋᐢᑌᒫᐤ;

ᓵᐘᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᐋᐸᑯᓰᓴᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐍᔨᒫᐟ ᐅᐢᑳᔭ ᐁᑿ ᑭᑕᒥᔨᐟ ᑭᓭᐚᑎᓯᐏᐣ.
ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓀᐣ ᐸᐢᒁᐏᐦᑲᐢᑿ;

ᐸᐦᑭᓯᒧᑖᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᐸᐢᒁᐏᒧᐢᑐᓴᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐍᔨᒫᐟ ᐅᑮᓱᐦᐱᑭᐘ ᐁᑿ ᑭᑕᒥᔨᐟ ᓰᐱᔭᐍᓯᐏᐣ.
ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓀᐣ ᐑᐦᑲᐢᑿ;

ᑮᐍᑎᓄᕽ ᐃᓯ ᓂᒪᐏᒨᐢᑕᒧᐚᐤ ᒪᐢᑿᐊᐦᒐᕽ ᑭᑕᓈᑲᑕᐍᔨᒫᐟ ᑫᐦᑌᐊᔭ ᐁᑿ ᑭᑕᒥᔨᐟ ᓵᑭᐦᐃᑐᐏᐣ.
ᓂᐸᑭᑎᓀᐣ ᒫᓯᑮᐢᐠ.

ᓴᐍᔨᒥᐠ ᑲᐦᑭᔭᐤ ᓂᐚᐦᑰᒫᑲᓇᐠ, ᐦᐊᕀᐦᐊᕀ.

Creator, I thank you for another day.

To the East I pray to the Eagle Spirit to take care of the newborns and to give me patience. I set down tobacco;
To the South I pray to the Mouse Spirit to take care of the youth and to give me kindness.
I set down sage;
To the West I pray to the Buffalo Spirit to take care of the adults and to give me tolerance.
I set down sweet grass;
To the North I pray to the Bear Spirit to take care of the Elders and to give me love.
I set down cedar.
Bless all my relatives, hay-hay.

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (th-dialect), Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree | 1 Comment

Wîsahkêcahk self-medicates for Coronavirus (Solomon Ratt: th-dialect)

Sol is not actually dressed for coronavirus quarantine in this photo, but he could be

[An entirely made-up legend, but – like all legends – it offers an important lesson!]

kîtahtawî îsa wîsahkîcâhk kî-wâpahtam mihkwâkanasinahikanihk î-âsôskamâkâniwik ohpanahpinîwin ikwa mihcît athisitiniwa î-nanâtawihisocik nîhithaw-maskihkiya ohci. wîsta papâmi-môsahkinam nîhithaw-maskihkiya, athisk î-tâpwîhtahk kahkithaw nanâtohk kîkway kayâs ohci î-mithwâsinithik. ikwâni pakahtâw kahkithaw maskihkiyaw piyakwanita askihkohk.

“kîspin piyak maskihkiy kita-nanâtawihikoyân nawac îtokî kita-sôhkana maskihkiya mâwasakonamâna,” î-itîthihtahk. ikwâni maskihkîwâpôstamâkîmisow. îkatînam iskotihk ohci ispî kâ-kîsi-maskihkîwâpohkît, kita-tahkikamithik. ispî kâ-tahkikamithik ati-minihkwîw. wahwâ! kakwâtaki âhkôtîwanithiw omaskihkîwâpoy. mâka kiyâm ikosi kitâw.

“namôtha nika-âhkosin,” î-itîthimisot. hay, kîtahtawî kâ-ati-kisiwaskatîskâkot omaskihkîwâpoy. nâcipahîw onanâtawîhiyiniwa. kaciskaw kaskîtâthiw kita-nanâtawihikot.

ᑮᑕᐦᑕᐑ ᐄᓴ ᐑᓴᐦᑮᒑᕽ ᑮ ᐚᐸᐦᑕᒼ ᒥᐦᒁᑲᓇᓯᓇᐦᐃᑲᓂᕽ ᐄ ᐋᓲᐢᑲᒫᑳᓂᐏᐠ ᐅᐦᐸᓇᐦᐱᓃᐏᐣ ᐃᑿ ᒥᐦᒌᐟ ᐊᖨᓯᑎᓂᐘ ᐄ ᓇᓈᑕᐏᐦᐃᓱᒋᐠ ᓃᐦᐃᖬᐤ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑭᔭ ᐅᐦᒋ᙮ ᐑᐢᑕ ᐸᐹᒥ ᒨᓴᐦᑭᓇᒼ ᓃᐦᐃᖬᐤ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑭᔭ, ᐊᖨᐢᐠ ᐄ ᑖᐿᐦᑕᕽ ᑲᐦᑭᖬᐤ ᓇᓈᑐᕽ ᑮᑿᕀ ᑲᔮᐢ ᐅᐦᒋ ᐄ ᒥᙽᓯᓂᖨᐠ᙮ ᐃᒁᓂ ᐸᑲᐦᑖᐤ ᑲᐦᑭᖬᐤ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑭᔭᐤ ᐱᔭᑿᓂᑕ ᐊᐢᑭᐦᑯᕽ᙮

“ᑮᐢᐱᐣ ᐱᔭᐠ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑭᕀ ᑭᑕ ᓇᓈᑕᐏᐦᐃᑯᔮᐣ ᓇᐘᐨ ᐄᑐᑮ ᑭᑕ ᓲᐦᑲᓇ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑭᔭ ᒫᐘᓴᑯᓇᒫᓇ,” ᐄ ᐃᑏᖨᐦᑕᕽ᙮ ᐃᒁᓂ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑮᐚᐴᐢᑕᒫᑮᒥᓱᐤ᙮ ᐄᑲᑏᓇᒼ ᐃᐢᑯᑎᕽ ᐅᐦᒋ ᐃᐢᐲ ᑳ ᑮᓯ ᒪᐢᑭᐦᑮᐚᐳᐦᑮᐟ, ᑭᑕ ᑕᐦᑭᑲᒥᖨᐠ᙮ ᐃᐢᐲ ᑳ ᑕᐦᑭᑲᒥᖨᐠ ᐊᑎ ᒥᓂᐦᑹᐤ᙮ ᐘᐦᐚ! ᑲᒁᑕᑭ ᐋᐦᑰᑏᐘᓂᖨᐤ ᐅᒪᐢᑭᐦᑮᐚᐳᕀ᙮ ᒫᑲ ᑭᔮᒼ ᐃᑯᓯ ᑭᑖᐤ᙮

“ᓇᒨᖬ ᓂᑲ ᐋᐦᑯᓯᐣ,” ᐄ ᐃᑏᖨᒥᓱᐟ᙮ ᐦᐊᕀ, ᑮᑕᐦᑕᐑ ᑳ ᐊᑎ ᑭᓯᐘᐢᑲᑏᐢᑳᑯᐟ ᐅᒪᐢᑭᐦᑮᐚᐳᕀ᙮ ᓈᒋᐸᐦᐄᐤ ᐅᓇᓈᑕᐑᐦᐃᔨᓂᐘ᙮ ᑲᒋᐢᑲᐤ ᑲᐢᑮᑖᖨᐤ ᑭᑕ ᓇᓈᑕᐏᐦᐃᑯᐟ᙮

As it happened wîsahkîcâhk saw on Facebook things about the Coronavirus that many people were self-medicating with Cree medicine. He too went about gathering all the Cree medicine he could because he believed that all kinds of the old medicines were good. Then he boiled all the medicines together in one pot.

“If one medicine is good for curing me then maybe these medicines put together will be more powerful,” he thinks. He makes medicine tea for himself. He removes it from the fire when he finishes making it and sets it aside to cool. When it cooled down he took a drink! Holy! It was pungent! But he drank it all anyway.
“I will not be sick,” he thinks to himself. All of a sudden the medicine began to give him an upset stomach. He ran to the doctor. The doctor was barely able to cure him.

Posted in Audio (th-dialect), Plants and Medicine, Solomon Ratt | Leave a comment

Stay home: Learn Cree – 5. Dorothy Thunder Introduces herself

While we’re all in isolation, we’re trying to try to post one video a day from Sol and his fellow Cree teachers. Some from his existing teaching library – and some brand new. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Today, Dorothy Thunder ê-wâpamâyâhk (we see her) in a FaceBook Live video. Listen as she introduces herself in Cree (then patiently explains in English). Her repetitions are particularly helpful for learners. 

Dorothy is from Little Pine in Saskatchewan. She speaks Cree as her first language, and is the principal Cree teacher at the University of Alberta, and she hangs out with all the coolest (Cree-teaching) kids. Look for more of Dorothy’s videos on FaceBook, in the group. Nehiyawewin ohpinetan.

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | Leave a comment

Stay home: Learn Cree – 4. Essential Phrases at Home

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from the existing teaching libraries of Sol and some of his Creecher friends. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Today (day four) we’ve got some really useful – maybe even essential – phrases for families at home. Our inspiration came from Charlie Venne’s  “Simple Commands in Woodlands Cree” (Charlie has also agreed to let us share some of his videos). As the original webmaster for Gift of Language and Culture, Charlie is an experienced presenter of online teaching resources (and a fluent th-dialect speaker). Find more of Charlie’s work at FirstNationsStories.com

Sol and I expanded his list to include: 

  • What we say to children (or anyone, really) 
  • What parents (or caregivers) say to children 
  • What children say (Things kids are gonna be saying anyway, so they may as well learn to say them in Cree)
  • Click the link to download a pdf version of these EssentialPhrases – you might like to have it as you read along! 

Of course, the list is endless, and Sol no sooner got the list recorded than somebody thought of more. Like this really important one (that we all need from time to time): namôya niya! It wasn’t me!

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | 6 Comments

Stay home: Learn Cree – 3. My Body

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from Sol’s existing teaching library. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

Today we’ve got two videos about the body. The first is from Sol’s friend Grace Ithiniw Iskwêw, the second from Sol himself.

Grace is a speaker of Woodland Cree (th-dialect) from Barren Lands FN: Brochet, Manitoba. She is a mother of six, a Cree teacher with Brandon School Division, and she’s working on her MA at Brandon University. Her family continues to live off the land up north, along Reindeer Lake.  Her students – currently her captive audience – are her children. You can find more of her videos on Youtube.

Sol’s video gives us a longer list of body parts, and gives each one them in two forms.

  • First (on the left) he gives the “unpossessed form” – the word you use for “a nose” or “an eye.” These forms – like English words – are for body parts that don’t belong to anybody. Most of them start with m-. 
  • Next (on the right) he gives the “possessed form” – “my nose” or “your eye” – because in Cree, body parts normally belong to somebody. (We might jokingly say that body parts are attached to their owners. Or vice versa. I’m certainly attached to mine!) 

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | Leave a comment

Stay home: Learn Cree – 2. How about you?

While we’re all in isolation, we’re going to try to post one video a day from Sol’s existing teaching library. Like Sasquatch himself, Solomon Ratt has experience with self isolation. Who better to help out with online Cree lessons for remote learning?  

In this video, Sol presents introductions in a dialogue, with questions built on “kiya mâka” – How about you? 

(About Sol’s shirt: https://creeliteracy.org/2020/03/17/awas-go-away-most-dialects/)

 

 

Posted in Audio (y-dialect), Conversations, Language Lessons, Solomon Ratt, Stay Home: Learn Cree, Video | 2 Comments