Charlotte Charles


Bilingualism means being able to speak both languages. I'm bilingual because I grew up speaking Yup'ik with my parents and family. I also grew up speaking in English while I had school from four years old. I'm going to talk about losing our language, teaching our kids how to be bilingual, speaking and writing both languages, translating words and sentences to our Elders, and last of all keeping our culture alive.

Some Elders say we are starting to lose our language because little kids are starting to speak in English only. Once we lose our Yup'ik language we can't get it back. We might become like non natives, that means non Yup'ik speakers anymore. We might not lose our English language because most of the people in the world know how to speak English. English is still important to us because we have to know how to speak and write in English so we can read the words or understand sentences. We need to teach our children how to be bilingual. We also need to teach our children how to speak and write both languages. Some of the kids might grow up speaking both languages. If we are bilingual we could translate words and sentences to our Elders who don't know how to speak one of the languages

I wish we can keep our culture alive so our children can see how it is to speak in Yup'ik and English. We also make and try to understand things at our ancestors time. We need more Education from both languages. Only if I knew English I can be part of an English community. I need more information about the past so I can read and write to remember. We need to keep our culture alive in both Yup'ik and English.

Akula Logo Back to Akula's Main Page

To send questions or comments, please contact Akula Elitnaurvik