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Saulteaux Language Stressed

SASKATCHEWAN INDIAN      MAY 1976      v06 n05 p23  
At a recent Parent-Teacher Meeting at the St. Philip's School, the parents expressed a desire to continue to expand on Indian orientation in the school curriculum.

The Division I students meaning Grade 1, 2, and 3 levels are presently taking Social Studies designed by the Indian Cultural College. It was the general understanding that books are being made as a follow-up from Division 1. These new texts will be included in the Division II levels (grades 4, 5, and 6).

School Principal Lipka has only great praise for Mrs. Madeleine Whitehawk in her work as teacher for the Grade 3 students. Mr. Lipka says, "She's top notch."

Mrs. Whitehawk from the Cote Band is a graduate of the Indian Teachers Education Program and was hired on the teaching staff at the St. Philip's Indian Day School last summer. Since she became a staff member, the other teachers became more aware of the Indian Orientation.

Seeing that the Saulteaux Language textbooks are still being devised a knowledgeable and fluent speaker of the Saulteaux language has been hired. The person is Jean Keshane of the Keeseekoose Band.

Mrs. Keshane spends all her time going from the Nursery right up to the Grade 6 classrooms teachings the Basics of the Saulteaux languages at the St. Philip's School.

A lot of thanks should be given to the Keeseekoose and Cote School Committees for being aware of reviving the Saulteaux language The young Indian generation have lost the use of their native tongue due to the over-emphasis of European influence, such as the English language. The school committees were able to pressure the Indian Affairs Department to squeeze the Saulteaux language into the school curriculum rather than learn something that is completely foreign to them.

At the Cote Nursery and Kindergarten classrooms, these little tots are also learning the Basics of the Saulteaux language. Their eagerness to learn their own language is written on their faces as they have a much easier time to learn this language in the age group.

The older students seem to have a tougher time in punctuations and the adjusting of their tongues and lips to the Saulteaux words and syllables.

The parents requested that the Saulteaux language have more time in the young age group rather than the 15 minutes per class that is presently being employed.

St Philip's Level I teachers
St Philip's Level I teachers explaining the Indian Social Studies program designed by the Cultural College. [L-R]: Mrs. Eleanor Morquardt, Rose Lozinski, and Mrs Madeline Whitehawk.
Grade 2 students from St. Philip's
The Grade 2 students from St. Philip's singing the Canadian national anthem.