As part of our Ocean Food Seasonal Round project in both Skidegate and Old Massett Haida Language, here is the first Words/Phrases of the week to accompany the Ocean Food Seasonal Round Poster and upcoming book. The images are from the book, drawn by Dejah-Lee Busch. The project is a collaborative project between SD #50, SHIP, and the Xaad Kil Nee Haida Language office with support from CHN Communications. – Jaskwaan Bedard
Xaad Kihlgaa Hl Suu.u Society is the umbrella Haida language organization for the northern Haida dialect. The Society strives to preserve and honour the Haida language. The Society assists the Xaad Kil Gwaaygangee (language nest), the school programs, the Simon Fraser University Haida language proficiency program and other programs. XKHS enjoys working with the Skidegate and Alaska language groups as well.
The Haida language is a Language Isolate unique to the people of Haida Gwaii and southern Alaska. The Haida language, like most other Aboriginal languages of British Columbia is in a difficult state.
Xaadee Gyaahlaangaay – Haida Legends Project
In Old Massett, there are less than a dozen fluent speakers, all of whom are in their 70s and 80s. Many of these elders are passionately working to preserve their mother tongue. The last fluent elders go between the schools, recording room, language nest and adult classes because of their love of Xaad Kil. We give thanks to the fluent Haida language teachers of today: Primrose Adams, Stephen Brown, Emily Geortzen, Claude Jones, Mary Swanson, and Nina Williams and we give thanks to the elders who have passed on but had the foresight to record their stories.
This project is one way for us to keep our storytelling tradition and Xaad Kil, the Old Massett dialect alive.