Indigenous Peoples’ Day: Learn an indigenous or endangered language with this app

Folks gathered around the globe gathered in August to reveal their assist of indigenous peoples’ rights. Pictured listed below are traditionally-dressed Bolivian dancers.

Romy Arroyo Fernandez/NurPhoto/Getty Picture

This story is part of Tech for a Better World, stories about the diverse teams creating products, apps and services to improve our lives and society.

On Indigenous Peoples’ Day, 14 states throughout the US acknowledge and have a good time the Native American populations who had been already dwelling on North American soil earlier than Italian explorer Christopher Columbus arrived. Regardless of the rising consciousness of those cultures, Indigenous languages face the hazard of extinction. In 2018, over 3,000 languages had been vulnerable to being misplaced endlessly. Final yr, the, president of the United Nations Normal Meeting mentioned that two indigenous languages are at risk of disappearing each month


To assist defend these endangered languages, apps have been stepping up over time. For instance, Duolingo affords classes in ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi (Hawaiian) and Diné (Navajo), and Drops affords Ainu, an indigenous Japanese language.

Learn extra: Best language learning apps of 2020

Another choice for studying and serving to protect an endangered language is Transparent Language Online. The language studying software program firm partnered with the nonprofit 7000 Languages to assist advocates from endangered language teams to protect their language in on-line programs. The result’s on-line classes created by the tribes and for the tribes, based on Clear Language. However with the tribal advocates’ permission, anybody should purchase them on the location or app and check out them out too.

Clear Language affords 17 courses, some in numerous dialects or packaged for kid-friendly studying. After you enroll, you’ll be able to select a language to be taught and ensure to get began. Your language choices are:

  • Balinese
  • Behdini Kurdish
  • Ojibwe, Central Ojibwe, Northwestern Ojibwe and Oji-Cree
  • Dakota and Sisseton Dakota
  • Denesuline
  • Kituba
  • Koasati
  • Koyukon
  • Holikachuk
  • Gwich’in
  • Denaakk’e
  • Benhti Kenaga’

To check the service, I explored a couple of classes in Dakota, the language spoken by the Dakota individuals of the Sioux tribe. The course was created by Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate Dakotah Language Institute


Clear Language adapts its classes to totally different audio system who may be approaching the teachings. 

Clear Language/ Screenshot by Shelby Brown/ PJDM

The lesson began on adjectives with 11 vocabulary phrases. I listened to the phrase spoken in Dakota after which noticed the phrase in English on the display. If you happen to clicked the turtle icon within the backside left nook of the display, the pronunciation could be slower. The following lesson, Acknowledge and Say It, performed the Dakota phrase and gave me a second to recollect the interpretation. Then, on the respect’s system, I needed to click on sure or no, on whether or not I guessed proper. 

From there the lesson goes over the phrases in numerous methods like pronunciation, a number of alternative, matching and writing them.

I attempted the teachings out on my desktop, however Clear Language additionally has mobile apps for studying on the go. You may obtain the app for iOS, Android or Amazon. The service additionally affords accounts for presidency employees, companies and academic establishments. Clear Language can also be out there for libraries. You may search your zip code on the web site and in case your library has license to the software program, you can also make an account and use it without spending a dime. 

You may strive Clear Language’s programs free for 14 days. After that, it prices $25 a month, or $150 for a yr. If you happen to’re particularly excited by studying an endangered or indigenous language, you’ll be able to entry them without spending a dime by means of

For extra on language studying, try the best language learning apps of 2020.


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Shelby Brown