The Project serves the Acoma Tribal community, both speakers and non-speakers of the Keres language. The oldest continuously inhabited community in the US, the Pueblo of Acoma (“Haak’u” in Keres) is a National Trust for Historic Preservation Historic Site. But while the physical infrastructure of Pueblo of Acoma Nation has been safeguarded, its linguistic heritage is in critical danger of being irrevocably lost. The tribe estimates that today, only 30 fluent speakers of Keres remain. To save the Keres language the Pueblo of Acoma has partnered with The Language Conservancy (TLC) for the Keres Language Recovery project. This multi-year project will create the linguistic infrastructure needed to safeguard the Keres language for future generations.
Currently, TLC and the Pueblo of Acoma are working on a beginner, Level 1, Keres language textbook and accompanying Audio CDs. This textbook will be used to teach the Keres language in the Sky City school district reaching over 600 Acoma children. The textbook and Audio CDs will follow TLC’s proven work strategy for developing linguistic infrastructure. TLC has used this strategy to develop effective materials for the Lakota, Crow, Hidatsa, and other tribes. This textbook will be a major step in preserving the Keres language and safeguarding a cornerstone of the Acoma culture for future generations.
The Language Conservancy (TLC) is an organization dedicated to preserving and teaching endangered native languages. When Native American students are able to learn their native languages, they experience an improvement in self-esteem and academic achievement. This is borne out by higher test scores for students who participate in our programs. Preserving native languages saves more than just a way to communicate, it saves an irreplaceable part of a culture. Languages are subtle records of a people, carrying within them their history and way of viewing the world. TLC believes that education is the key to revitalizing languages. By providing rigorous, world-class materials to underserved areas we provide a firm foundation on which to build a stronger community. Through strengthening languages, we strengthen communities.
TLC supports the survival of endangered languages through technical assistance to grassroots-level language preservation and education efforts such as teacher training, textbooks, audio CDs and App development. TLC currently works with over a dozen different Native American language groups and plans to expand as our help is requested.2620 North Walnut Suite 810