Did you know that 2019 is the International Year of Indigenous Languages?
Language and the crucial role it plays in our lives is often overlooked. It’s used to communicate, educate, share and develop as human beings, but also within culture, tradition, and memory. It’s easy to understand how valuable language is to our species, but languages, specifically Indigenous languages, are still disappearing. The United Nations created this observance for 2019 to raise awareness about the endangerment of the world’s Indigenous languages, and to establish a link between language, development, peace, and reconciliation. Language contributes to our world’s rich cultural diversity, and our cultural history would be lost without it.
June 21st is National Indigenous Peoples Day and to celebrate, The Exploration Place is hosting free activities that blend Indigenous languages with computational thinking skills and coding. Noelle Pepin, Indigenous educator from School District 57’s Aboriginal Educations department, will lead us through learning various words in local Indigenous dialects, and then work with us to code these words into binary to create binary beaded bracelets and keychains.
In 2017 The Exploration Place signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Lheidli T’enneh Nation and we are thankful for this partnership as we are also located on the traditional and unceded territory of the Lheidli T’enneh Nation. Hodul’eh-a: A Place of Learning is a permanent exhibit developed in partnership with the Lheidli T’enneh in dedication to the rich Indigenous culture and history of our region. Come and learn more about local Indigenous languages using the Lheidli Carrier dictionary!
There will also be free rides on the Little Prince Steam Engine from 12-4pm during National Indigenous Peoples Day.