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Robert Munsch books to be translated to Yukon First Nation languages

20 titles in four languages means 80 books are in the works.

Illustration from the book “Moose!” by Robert Munsch (picture: scholastic.ca).

Kids all over the Yukon will soon be able to read 20 titles by renowned children’s author Robert Munsch in Tlingit, Southern Tutchone, Kaska and Northern Tutchone.

 

Some of the books include “The Paper Bag Princess,” “Love You Forever,” “Blackflies,” and “Bear for Breakfast.”

 

The Yukon Native Language Centre is working on translating the stories with the help of fluent speakers, while providing a learning experience for trainees.

 

Carcross Tagish First Nation, Kluane First Nation, Liard First Nation and Selkirk First Nation are partners in the endeavor to bring kids books in First Nation languages.

 

The project is being funded by the Council of Yukon First Nations and the Community Development Fund.

 

Shadelle Chambers is the Executive Director of the Council of Yukon First Nations.

 

“It is important to have language recourses for children because we know that is where the intergenerational transmission of language skills happen – between parent and child, naturally at home, in a young age group. So, we really want to ensure a number of our initiatives are focused on that transmission of language learning,” says Chambers.

 

The books will keep the original illustrations. “Blackflies, and “Bear for Breakfast” feature the colourful artwork of Algonquin illustrator Jay Odjick.

 

“The Yukon Native Language Centre continues to demonstrate leadership in advancing Yukon First Nations languages through innovative projects and partnerships. Projects like this bring our languages to life in new ways and expose Yukon First Nations of all ages to the opportunity to embrace our Yukon First Nations languages,” says Council of Yukon First Nations Grand Chief Peter Johnston in a statement.

 

The story books are expected to be ready to be shipped out to Yukon First Nations by the fall.

 

Check out Hammond Dick reading the Robert Munsch story “Moose!” in Kaska.

 

Published February 4, 2022.

Written by: Dylan MacNeil

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