This scene, shown during the launch of the new Cree language app Jan. 23, is designed in such in a way that shows how the language is used each day. The app was presented to those attending the Reclaiming Our Knowledge conference in Maskwacis. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Cree language app from Maskwacis making teaching it easier

App for learning Cree more about everyday life, available soon

Nearly four years of ideas and work finally culminated in a new way to teach the Cree language.

A new app, available with iOS devices, focused on demonstrating how the Cree language is used in every day life and was officially launched on Jan. 23 during the fourth annual Reclaiming Our Knowledge conference in Maskwacis.

Called Maskosis, the app is a follow-up to the original Maskwacis Cree app that was released in 2014. The new app is not yet available for download, but is expected to be ready on iTunes sometime in February.

“This app is the first of its kind, with Cree and English in the same app,” explained Brian Lightning, one of the committee members that worked on producing the app.

It provides 14 different scenes of daily life — from a school classroom to the playground to the home to name a few — which people can interact with by clicking on an object and listen to, plus see the written phrase on the screen.

“It’s fully interactive with animations that respond with both the written Cree language, the English translation and the words being vocalized,” Lightning stated.

“The various scenes and phrases show the Cree language in a storybook format, something that’s never been done before. It introduces people to our grammar and showing that the language is life.”

Both apps came about as a result wanting the Cree language to remain vibrant.

“We started on the first app because the language was in danger of dying off. It was almost to a crisis point. We have some unbelievable Cree speakers and we needed a way to tie them together with the other generations,” Lightning said.

“This app began as the first one just wasn’t reaching our young people and technology was a big part of that. So, we thought of using the technology to bring them back.”

He added it was challenging to convince people to use the first app as it was limited to just one word at a time, whereas the new app allows users to see words and phrases on a single page.

Samson Cree Nation Chief Vernon Saddleback was amazed and somewhat stunned at what the new app can do.

“Growing up, we were taught and tested on Cree at meals. Seeing this app, it’s so different and beyond all of mine and council’s expectations,” he said.

“It’s an amazing way for people to learn and the work spent gathering and saving the language is amazing and simply priceless.”

 

This scene, shown during the launch of the new Cree language app Jan. 23, is designed in such in a way that shows how the language is used each day. The app was presented to those attending the Reclaiming Our Knowledge conference in Maskwacis. Photo by Jordie Dwyer

Just Posted

WCPS uses cannabis legislation to fully review drug, alcohol and tobacco policies

Cannabis is not permitted in schools; WCPS focused on providing education and support

Puff, puff, pass: Cannabis is officially legal across Canada

Alberta readies itself for cannabis sales with 17 stores (for now) and a new provincial website

Lacombe Mayor Creasey says enforcement of cannabis bylaws dependant upon adherence

Recreational cannabis becomes legal this week in Canada

UPDATE: Lacombe Generals split weekend games after losing in Stony Plain

Lacombe shows off offensive repertoire against Ft. Sask; comes up just short against the Eagles

Darrell Paulovich remembered after accident claims his life

A tragic accident claimed the life of a rodeo advocate over the weekend

WATCH: Ground-breaking ceromony held for Charis Village Seniors Housing project

$22 million development will include 10 duplexes and 46-unit complex

Jagmeet Singh says marijuana pardons are not enough

Trudeau government will streamline pardon process for Canadians convicted of simple possession of marijuana in the past

Test case challenges a politician’s right to block people from Twitter account

3 people say Watson infringed their constitutional right to freedom of expression by blocking them

After 50 years, ‘Sesame Street’ Big Bird puppeteer retiring

The puppeteer who has played Big Bird on “Sesame Street” is retiring after nearly 50 years on the show.

Britain, EU decide to take some time in getting Brexit right

Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said “we need much time, much more time and we continue to work in the next weeks.”

Parole denied for convicted killer-rapist Paul Bernardo after 25 years in prison

Paul Bernardo plead for release on Wednesday by arguing he has done what he could to improve himself during his 25 years in prison.

B.C. Lions look to cement CFL playoff spot with victory over Eskimos

B.C. can cement a post-season berth in the wild West Division on Friday night with a home win over the Edmonton Eskimos

Canada ban on asbestos takes effect but mining residues are exempt

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna plans to announce the new regulations implementing the ban on Thursday in Ottawa

UPDATE: Aurora Rafer has been found unharmed

RCMP have a man in custody and continue to investigate

Most Read