Preserving Lakota Way of Life Through Our Youth

2012 5th Annual Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit

Thank you to all the 2012 Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit Staff, Sponsors, Participants, Presenters, and Vendors for making our 5th annual gathering such a huge success. Lila Wopila Tanka!



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The 2012 Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit was held November 15, 16, 17 at the Ramkota Hotel and Convention Center in Rapid City, SD. This year we had a total of 442 registered participants representing 27 tribes as well as several non-Natives from across the United States and Canada. The tribes represented were:
1.     Oglala Sioux Tribe
2.     Standing Rock Sioux Tribe
3.     Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe
4.     Rosebud Sioux Tribe
5.     Winnebago Tribe
6.     Cree
7.     Santee Sioux Tribe of Nebraska
8.     Yankton Sioux Tribe
9.     Upper Sioux Community
10.   Lower Sioux Community
11.   Canupawakpa Dakota Nation
12.   Standing Buffalo Dakota Nation
13.   Three Affiliated Tribes
14.   Dine Nation
15.   Pomo Tribe
16.   Spirit Lake Dakota Nation
17.   Crow Creek Sioux Tribe
18.   Northern Cheyenne
19.   Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate
20.   White Cap Dakota First Nation
21.   Nisqually Indian Tribe
22.   Wahpeton Dakota First Nation
23.   Menominee Nation
24.   Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe
25.   Northern Arapaho
26.   Assiniboine
27.   Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation
28. Seminole
Participants of the 2012 Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit came from areas across the United States and Canada including:
1. South Dakota, USA
2. North Dakota, USA
3. Colorado, USA
4. Vermont, USA
5. Ontario, CAN
6. New Mexico, USA
7. Minnesota, USA
8. Saskatchewan, CAN
9. Nebraska, USA
10. Montana, USA
11. Manitoba, CAN
12. Maryland, USA
13. Arizona, USA
14. Washington, USA
15. Alberta, CAN
16. Idaho, USA
Onsite registration for the summit was opened at 6pm on November 14th at the Ramkota Hotel and Convention Center and continued throughout the summit. Opening ceremonies were started at 1pm with a prayer and the entrance of the staffs. The general assembly was entertained and informed by our Master of Ceremonies Mr. Chris Eagle Hawk. Mr. Michael Carlow, Jr. the founder and Director of Tusweca Tiospaye and the Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit gave opening remarks and was followed by a keynote address by Mr. Earl Bull Head a respected language instructor and traditional singer.
Oglala Lakota spiritual leader and educator, Mr. Wilmer Mesteth then gave a presentation of traditional Lakota songs explaining their meaning and use. Newly elected Oglala Sioux Tribal President, Mr. Bryan Brewer gave his first public address as president elect where he vowed to make the saving of our language a priority of his administration. Mr. Peter Hill, a fluent Lakota speaking second language learner delivered the final keynote address of the day.
Besides the keynote addresses there were many breakout sessions facilitated by language educators, learners and activists where summit participants could choose which presentation they wanted to attend. The breakout sessions are designed to allow the presenters to share with their audience traditional knowledge; language teaching/learning strategies, methods, resources, and technologies that can be used to successfully create new generations of Lakota Dakota Nakota language speakers.
The final day, November 17th consisted of the presentation of a play by Ben Black Bear, Jr. and Sandra Black Bear. The play was done entirely in the Lakota/Dakota language and was a portrayal of traditional Iktomi Stories. After the play, the actors each took time to talk to the crowd about the experience of putting the play together and performing it.  A group of high school students from St. Francis Indian School closed out the presentations with a puppet show done in the Lakota language. Michael Carlow then gave closing remarks, a closing prayer was said by Mr. Wilmer Mesteth, the staffs were exited out to the Crazy Horse Singers and the summit was brought to a close.
Presenters and presentations included:
-Keynote - Earl Bull Head
-Keynote - Wilmer Mesteth
-Keynote - Peter Hill
Breakout Sessions
-Marilyn Circle Eagle - "Teaching Lakhota to Community Members
-Ben Black Bear Jr. - "Wichoiye Lechala Kagapi (Neologisms and coining new words)
-Ivan Starr - "Effects of Trauma, Historical and Otherwise"
-Peter Hill - "Childhood Immersion, What it IS and What it ISN'T
-Lakota Woglaka Wounspe - "100% Lakota Language Immersion Experience"
-Kimberlee Campbell, Ph.D. - Reading in Lakota: Why? Why Not?
-Albert White Hat - "Philosophy of the Lakota Language"
-Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Education Department - "Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Language Revitalization Program"
-Joseph Lafferty - "Lakota Immersion Discussion"
-Peter Hill - "This is Harder Than I Expected! Raising a Lakota Speaking Child"
-Noella Eagle - "Understanding Language Development is Key to Attaining Fluency"
-Diane Merrick/Kipp Spotted Eagle - "Dakota/Nakota Language Program Utilizing Technology"
-Alvin Slow Bear- "The Road of Life Through the Medicine wheel"
-Dakota Wicohan - "Dakotiyapi kin Unspeunkic'iciyapi, A Discussion for Second Language Learners"
-Robert Two Crow - "Lakota Language Immersion Round Table"
-Dewey Bad Warrior - "Seven W's, Lakota Way of Life, Values"
-Chief Cameron Alexis - "History of Migration of the Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation"
-Delphine Red Shirt - "Na', in the Language of Oral Tradition"
-Jim Green/Rosalie Little Thunder - "Do We Need to Know How the Maoris Actually Made it Work? Hau!"
-Edward Starr - "Ceji Wakan"
-Peter Hill - "Extremely Common Learner Mistakes"
-Lakota Language Education Action Program
-Helene Circle Eagle - "Living and Knowing Our True Ancestry"
-Oceti Wakan - "A Call to Action"
-Faith Spotted Eagle -"Bridging the Generation Divide of language Loss"
-Harold Charging Hawk/St. Francis Students - "Lakota Puppet Show"
-Ben Black Bear/Sandra Black Bear - "Iktomi Stories"
Evening entertainment included traditional hand-games on Thursday night, November 15th and the Oceti Sakowin Wacipi (powwow) on Friday night, November 16th. The powwow brought in many members of the surrounding communities as well the summit participants. Many dancers in all dance categories from the very young to elders took part and thirteen drum groups came to provide the heartbeat and the music for the powwow.
2012 Tusweca Tiospaye 
Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit
November 15, 16, 17
Best Western Ramkota Hotel & Convention Center
Rapid City, SD
The Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit was created by Tusweca Tiospaye in 2008 in an effort to unite the Oceti Sakowin, Seven Council Fires of the Lakota DakotaNakota Oyate, also known as the Great Sioux Nation, in efforts to keep the Lakota, Dakota, Nakota languages alive. Today it has become an international Native language summit with tribes from across the United States and Canada taking part as participants working to revitalize their own tribal languages and as presenters sharing how they have been successful in their work to keep their language strong and flourishing.
Some Questions and Answers:
Who should attend?
Educators, School Administrators, School Board Members, Parents, Students, Community Members, Tribal Councils, Elders, Anyone working to teach or learn a Native language.
Is the Lakota Dakota Nakota Language Summit for the Sioux people only?
No. All tribes should attend. This is an international language revitalization convention. The teaching/learning methods, strategies, models, resources, and technology that will be shared can be adapted to make a successful program for any Native language.
What topics will be covered?