Elders and Educators Learn About Master-Apprentice Approach

Leanne Hinton, Professor emerita at the University of California at Berkeley, presented to Educators and Elders at a Mi’kmaw Workshop on the Master-Apprentice Language Learning Program in Membertou on February 25th and 26th, 2015.

Master-Apprentice is a one on one approach geared toward motivated learners. The goal of the approach is to help facilitate the development of fluent Mi’kmaw speakers by partnering committed learners and fluent speakers in an immersion environment.

“Apprentices have a very active role in the process and must learn to ask questions,” Hinton told the group. “They are language hunters and will guide their own learning of the language.”

The challenge with this technique is that it does not create an abundant number of speakers and it is not intended for a classroom teaching technique. The strength of this technique is that it creates a fluent speaker with an ancestral language from an Elder/Mentor. The role of the participants in this training is to be trained by Hinton herself and to act as trainers at their communities request.