FERNANDEÑO TATAVIAM TRIBE PUBLISHES FIRST FERNANDEÑO TATAVIAM LANGUAGE WORKBOOK
San Fernando, Ca. – The Fernandeño Tataviam Band of Mission Indians’ (FTBMI) Education and Cultural Learning Department (ECLD) is thrilled to announce the launch of the first ever Vüravk (Talk) Fernandeño Tataviam language workbook! Learn how to say greetings, colors, animals, plants, seasons, body parts, numbers, and family relations in Volume 1: The Story of Fast Runner, now available for sale at https://www.tataviam-nsn.us/store/books/vuravk-talk-workbook/.
“We’ve always known that pieces of our language are still alive within our community members to this day. We, learning from our parents and grandparents, use words that we had believed to be Spanish in origin, but upon further research, have discovered are fragments of our aboriginal tongue,” says Tribal President Rudy J. Ortega Jr.. “We hope that this Workbook uplifts our people and gives them the confidence to know that the language has always been within us. We are also proud to share this workbook with the greater community so that our neighbors can better understand who we are as Native people and help break barriers of racism that we are exposed to daily.”
The Workbook includes the wonderful family story of Puchuk Ya’ia’c (Fast Runner), written by FTBMI Elder and Storyteller Alan Salazar, and consists of a blend of the English and Fernandeño Tataviam languages. The story tells the journey of a young Tataviam boy who learns life skills from his village. In addition to the story, readers can participate in learning activities for an introductory lesson of the Fernandeño Tataviam language. The content blends skills practice with puzzles which makes learning enjoyable and fun and includes a bonus five pages of Fernandeño Tataviam words. This is the first Tribally approved and overseen Fernandeño Tataviam Language Workbook of its kind.
This project is completed almost 100 years after the FTBMI’s ancestors were interviewed by salvage Anthropologists in the 20th century. “The ancestors left us the invaluable gift of our language and stories coded in their comments, so we have processed those messages so that our people can reclaim our language, which is a crucial part of our cultural heritage,” says ECLD Program Director Jenée Ornelas.
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