Native Language Lesson Booklets and Tapes or CDs

Each set in the Language Lessons series produced by Yukon Native Language Centre consists of a booklet and one or two cassette tapes or audio CDs. As the Centre recognizes the importance of local ways of speaking, the series now covers most dialects of Yukon languages. Of the twenty-four versions listed in the YNLC Publications Catalog, twenty represent Yukon dialects, two are versions of Gwich'in from the Northwest Territorries, and there are Alaskan versions of Hän and Tanacross. Each booklet contains more than 50 pages of basic sentences. The entire text, both English and native language, is recorded on the matching tape or CD.

The best way to get an idea of the range and depth of the material covered in these sets is to examine an Audio Lesson set on this web site. The online lessons are based on the cassette and booklet sets, and follow the same format. Some Language Lessons are also available on a computer CD which mirrors the Audio Lessons found on this website. The CD uses the computer's Browser to display the pictures and text, with a fluent speaker reading the acccompanying sentences.

Partly intended for classroom use, the lessons are organized according to months, from September to June. Within each month the lessons follow topics. For instance, the September lessons are entitled Greetings, Weather, People, Fish, Berries, and Activities. The organization follows that used in the curriculum guide, Teaching Yukon Native Languages, developed by the Centre. At the end of each booklet/tape there are two pages of Useful Classroom Expressions. Black and white illustrations are used throughout the booklets. (Sample page)

The recording, transcribing, editing and page layout, are all done at the Yukon Native Language Centre. Generally, the English text is read by one person and the native language is then given by the fluent speaker. After the recording is complete, the tape is transcribed by a linguist who often needs to consult again with the speaker over difficult parts. The transcription is then laid out and the pages are sent to the printer to be copied and bound. Inside the front cover there is a photograph of the speaker and a brief biography. The tapes are copied in the Centre. The cardboard inserts in the cassette boxes match the booklet covers. The Centre is gradually switching to CDs instead of cassettes.

An important aim of the series is to provide learning materials for younger parents whose children are attending Native Language classes at school. The lessons are also used by language teachers and the general public.

In early 2003 the Centre began posting lessons on the web, complete with audio. Please consult our online Audio Language Lessons area for more information.