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

Wetaskiwin liquor store robbed Feb. 21

Two suspects arrested after store employee threatened with bear spray

Vehicle and oversize load collide near South Cooking Lake turnoff

Strathcona County RCMP respond to serious injury collision on Hwy#14

Questionable reffing is becoming the NHL norm

Perhaps mandatory eye tests would help boost officials’ capabilities

Wetaskiwin Friendship Center gains momentum

Wetaskiwin city council reinforces its support behind Friendship Center

Just stop the political correctness stupidity

Seriously, stop ‘peoplekind,’ leave the anthem alone

WATCH: Red Deer celebrates one year out from 2019 Canada Games

Community gathers at Great Chief Park to commemorate Games milestone

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Man accused in death of Winnipeg teen Tina Fontaine not guilty

Raymond Cormier was accused of killing Indigenous 15-year-old and dumping her body in the Red River

Canadian support split on Trans Mountain pipeline debate: Poll

Angus Reid poll surveying Canadians on pipeline stance finds no clear winner

Student protest outside White House a snapshot of American gun debate

Demonstrators take part in a student protest for gun control legislation in front of the White House

Feds can’t do much to fight fake news in Canada

Federal government can’t do much to fight fake news: Canadian Heritage documents

Canada’s Boutin wins silver in women’s 1,000 short track

Women’s 1,000-metre short-track speedskater Kim Boutin wins silver the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics Thursday

Alberta takes out full-page ads in B.C. over strained relationship

It’s the latest move between the two provinces over progress on Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

Toddler swept away in Ontario floods

Toddler missing as flooding forces thousands from their homes in Ontario

Most Read