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Teaching Family language....Sandra Sebasio | Language, Elders, Revive, Clan, Made, Conference, Always, Dialects | FATSILC, Fed. Aboriginal Torres Strait Island Languages and Culture
Teaching Family language....Sandra Sebasio PDF Print E-mail

The language is 'Injinoo Ikya' and was documented by Helen Harper who came up here in 1998 to work with all the old people and record the language. My father was one of them. His name was Silas 'Snowy' Woosup.

First they all made a word list together. Then they put all these words into a book or dictionary. The languages that went into the book come from the 4 clan groups of the tip here. But we are all under the Uhradi dialects. That's the main grouping for this top area. But everyone has their own dialects I really want to revive our language. 

FATSILC Teaching Family Language
The plan right now is to get the elders group together and go to the library with some elders like Mrs Ropeyarn and Bettina Mcdonnell and learn from them. We can pay a little on top of their pension to come and teach us. My dream is to pass it on and share our language and culture with whoever in our clan who wants to know and learn. I always use it with small talk to my own children. I want them to learn it too. Its just for us now to make it happen – who's going to do it we don't do it for ourselves.

FATSILC Teaching Family Language

When I was at the Puliima Conference recently and heard their Elders say their welcome in language it made me feel something inside - like I wanted to speak my own language for special occasions on my country too. There wasn’t a lot of language when my parents were young and they were forced by the government not to speak their language. At the old village school, if they spoke their language, they were reported to the teacher and he would flog them. But that Conference has really boost me up, given me a shake up to think ‘what are you waiting for, get on with it!’ Its always been there in our heads to revive the language because its part of us. It’s just there