The Berkeley Language Center
Cordially Invites You to the Upcoming Meeting of Its
Found in Translation (FIT) Working Group
Using Learner-Generated Work as Source Materials
for a Language Revitalization Course
Doctoral candidate, Department of Linguistics, UC Berkeley
* * *
Friday, March 8, 2019
12 – 1 p.m. in B-4 Dwinelle Hall
Over the past two years, Julia Nee has been working on language revitalization initiatives with speakers and learners of Teotitlán del Valle Zapotec (TdVZ), an indigenous language spoken by approximately 3,500 people in Oaxaca, Mexico. One of her projects focuses on the development and implementation of several two-week intensive language camps for children ages 5-12. Few resources for learning TdVZ exist, and it was necessary to create nearly all of the language camp materials from scratch. In the process, a number of questions arose, especially, those related to identity (Nee is not Zapotec) and to the wide-ranging understanding by Zapotec participants of the notions of ‘authentic’, ‘culturally appropriate’, or ‘linguistically accurate’. In this talk, Julia Nee will give an overview of the possible responses to these issues, focusing in on the place of learner-generated material as an input to language learning. Based on classroom observations, one-on-one interviews, and focus groups with learners and their parents, it appears that learner-generated material, though it may introduce some linguistic ‘inaccuracies,’ has been successful in increasing learner engagement and continued language use.
We are a growing group of U.C. Berkeley community members interested in language, culture and cross-cultural communication. We invite you to join us!