Stories told in the classroom at the First Nations University are now part of a book series aimed at preserving Canada’s Aboriginal languages.
Solomon Ratt is a Woods Cree speaker and educator from Stanley Mission.
He is also an associate professor of languages at FNU.
At the book launch for Wood Cree Stories, he talked about the importance of story telling and humour in Aboriginal culture.
“Humour is a very important part of my culture and there is lots of humour in our traditional stories so I try to carry that humour out in the stories that I create,” he says.
The First Nations Language Reader series is being published by University of Regina Press.
Publisher Bruce Walsh says the goal is to expand the series to include every First Nation language in Canada.
“We are told time and again in terms of reconciliation and what First Nations people need, it’s their languages back and so we want to be part of the solution,” he says.
There are more than 60 Aboriginal languages spoken in Canada and some are on the verge of being lost forever.
The books will be used in classrooms and available in libraries.
The official book launch took place at the First Nations University of Canada.