Advancing Revitalization: Audio Transcription, Recorded Vocabulary, Language Fair, and Multimedia Ojibwe Productions-The Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Recipient Type
Tribal Government
Start Date
January 2014
End Date
June 2015
Project Overview

There are many goals in this project, each building on the Ojibwe language program already established on the Fond du Lac Reservation. The first being, to train thirty students in transcription methods and techniques and complete follow-up transcription projects. This will be done by conducting transcription training weekends for Ojibwemotaaidaa students to learn accepted methods and techniques for transforming audio recordings into written texts. Through transcription training and follow-up practice, students will advance more rapidly in language proficiency. The second goal is to identify and train three language specialists to work with elders in developing and recording audio vocabulary for existing Ojibwemotaadidaa immersion curriculum. Thirdly, an Ojibwe language fair will be offered for two years. These fairs will provide an opportunity for teachers and members of the greater Fond du Lac community to increase their awareness of language learning tools and resources. The fourth goal is to produce a play script and audio- animated video in Ojibwe based on a traditional story and publish a collection of Ojibwe stories reflecting diverse cultural activities with photographs and audio CD.

Legal Citation / Subdivision
M.L. 2013, Chp. 137, Art. 4, Sec. 2, Sub. 10 (b)
2015 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Measurable Outcome(s)

The 2015 Transcriptioni Workshop was hosted a the Cloquet Forestry Center on April 10-12 for thirteen students. Dr John Nicols facilitated the event withi help from language specialist Alex Kmett. The language specialist team worked with elder speakers to create and record audio lists. They continue to receive training in language acquisition and Ojibwe grammar and structure, to continually improve the quality of their work. The community event titled, Nagaajiwanaang Waakanawendangig Anishinaabemowin Maawanji'idiwin (the gathering of the ones who are caring for the language at Fond du Lac) was held on the FDL reservation on March 7th, 2015. This all-day event featured a talk by the new Ojibwe language co-ordinator for the FDL reservation, Dr. Janis A Fairbanks, and an introduction by elder Waasobiik Anna Gibbs of our video completed with the support of this MIAC grant. The animated film, how the Bear Lost It's Tail is complete and the play is fully scripted. We have shown the film on two reservations and in urban areas as well as released to the public. Goal 1 Outcome: Students were able to network with each other and with Dr. John Nichols abou thte on-going need for community contributions to the Ojibwe People's Dictionary as well as other communtiy language projects inlcuding the Algonquin Atlas. Dr Nichols trained students in methods of eliciting language and recording techniques to be able to make contributions to both these online resources. As a result of the training he has received to work as a Language Specialist in Goal 2, Alex Kmett was asked to help co-facilitate the transcrition workshop by Dr. Nichols. Dr. Nichols has also recently hired Mr. Kmett through the University of Minnesota to work on the Ojibwe People's Dictioniary after working with him on our projects. The facility of our Language Specialists has improved at an impressive rate. Not only will recipients of the audioi lists be able to improve their language, but the process of creating the audio lists is improving the language specialists' skills as well. They are learning how to become effective immersion instructors. In addition to producing audio lists with the elders, the language specialists are also working with the program director and elders to facilitate language games in an immersion environment. They learned how to translate the vocabulary required to communicate successfully the object and rules of games to the students. They record and transcribe the elder's translation to study the grammar and practice thier own pronunciation. The result has been impressive as their language skills have improved immensley. The thirteen students who received training in the transcription workshop were served directly. In addition to the students themselves, their skills and knowledge will impact other with whom they work or students who study with them.

Project Manager
First Name
Dr. Robert
Last Name
Organization Name
Fond du Lac Tribal College
Street Address
1720 Big Lake Road
Zip Code
Administered By
Administered by

161 Saint Anthony Ave
Suite 919
St. Paul, MN 55103