A new language program has been getting underway in Potlotek. The Mi’kmaw Language Mentorship Program is an idea that was developed by teacher, Jasmine Johnson. “I took part in the Mentor Apprentice Program through MK and I really saw the benefit in it,” said Johnson. “I wanted to do something similar here but on a smaller scale, and something that didn’t cost a lot of money.”
Each week, there will be fluent speakers ready to work with the youth. There will be 2 “themes” that they focus on, and because Mi’kmaw is a verb-based language, they will have conversations around situations instead of learning only nouns. The program is open to anyone over the age of 13.
During the first session, the students were provided with notebooks and are encouraged to write notes and take it home to practice with others.
The program was made possible through a grant for $1500. The money is being used for a small honorarium of $25 for the mentors each week, and snacks for the students. There is a plan to purchase shirts or hats for the students at the end of the program. The doors are open each week to anyone who is interested in attending or mentors who would like to help.
This is a pilot program which will be run for 6 weeks but if there is interest, it is something that will
continue into the future.