Language revival and education

One of the topics that really grabbed my attention this semester is that of language revival and education of indigenous languages in Australia.

This topic is of extreme relevance to the unit because it has given me a greater understanding as to the measures that have been taken to revive the remaining Aboriginal languages. There are approximately between 250 and 270 Aboriginal languages in use across Australia. However, less than 70 languages are spoken daily.

The following links that I have found on YouTube below demonstrate the measures that have been implemented to revive indigenous languages in Australia.

Reawakening Australia’s Aboriginal languages

This video is about the Wiradjuri language revival. Here, students at St John’s Park High School in Western Sydney are learning the basics of the Wiradjuri language such as animal names as well as how to talk about family members.

This video is relevant to this unit because it emphasises how important it is for students to use Aboriginal language to get a better understanding about Australia’s first people by learning language and culture at the same time. It is also relevant to the unit as the video shows how communities have a profound impact on language revitalisation.

From an educational perspective, this video is relevant because it shows the challenges that schools are presented with. An example of these challenges is that of a lack of resources such as textbooks, dictionaries and teachers.

Aboriginal language alive in school

This is a story from 7 News in Queensland where students from Pulteney Grammar School are learning the Kaurna language. The teacher introduced the Kaurna language to her students. The video also points out that the reason a language such as Kaurna is being revived is because the future generation of children will have much more respect and awareness of both language as well as its history.

The video concludes by saying that it is hoped that teachers will follow Pulteney Grammar School’s lead and therefore keep Aboriginal language alive for generations to come.

Lastly, this video is relevant to the unit because it shows how a school such as Pulteney Grammar is undertaking measures to revive a language such as Kaurna and therefore stop it from being extinct.

Miguel Munoz




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