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The preservation of Canadian indigenous language and culture through educational technology

Andrew Kitchenham

Abstract


This study was a preliminary investigation into the preservation of Indigenous language and culture through educational technology. Using the research methods of an online questionnaire, on-site visits, semi-structured interviews and reflective journals, I examined current methods adopted by Aboriginal Language and Culture (ALC) teachers in British Columbia. This article provides the summary of the online questionnaire. The results indicate that teachers are using a mix of outdated non-technological second-language methods such as flashcards and worksheets with more-recent methods such as Elders and experiential learning. The results also indicate that there is a mismatch between what teachers report as the methods they use and the effectiveness of those methods. The teachers are using technological tools such as interactive whiteboards, digital video cameras and the Internet, but they do not appear to be accessing online resources that are either targeted for Indigenous language use or could be easily adapted for language preservation. The extant literature on Indigenous learning styles and on the use of technology in Indigenous language and culture classrooms supports my findings.

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Print ISSN 1177-1801 Online ISSN 1174-1740