Training in Aboriginal
Languages Newsletter (Feb 1997)
PO Box 5264
Cable Beach, WA 6726
Skills Maintenance Workshop was held 20-21 November 1996 at the
KLRC [Kimberley Language Resource Centre] in Halls Creek. For some
time now there has been concern about follow-up support for accredited
interpreters so this workshop was organised for the six graduates
from Fitzroy Crossing and the seven from Halls Creek and Balgo courses.
[See PACE Newsletter 6.] … Margaret Sefton and Eirlys
Richards led the sessions. The agenda included sharing interpreting
experiences and a review of ethics issues arising from the discussion.
The main focus was on medical situations, focussing on eyes and
diabetes. Time was spent on reviewing information, terminology and
equivalents in Kriol and Jaru followed by relevant role play…”
PO Box 89
Katherine, NT 0851
FAX: (08) 8971 0561
is the newsletter of the Katherine Regional Aboriginal Language
Centre, which has recently been renamed the Diwurruwurru-jaru Aboriginal
Corporation. It contains a lot of news about the many recent developments
in interpreting in Aboriginal languages, including Kriol. One development
was the making of a video called “Nomo Humbug”, showing
people and organizations how to use the interpreting service.
issue of the newsletter also contains a report and an article by
Barbara Raymond, a language worker and interpreter, which are both
written in Kriol with an English translation.
News (Sept 1997)
PO Box 1451
Broome, WA 6725
FAX: (08) 9192 2559
issue starts off with a brief review of the FELIKS approach which
is “NOT about teaching Kriol or Aboriginal English (AE) in
schools but uses the home language as a jumping off point for teaching
SAE [Standard Australian English] more effectively. It emphasizes
the following (p.1):
accepting and validating the students’ home languages whether
they are Kriol, Aboriginal English or one of the traditional Aboriginal
• making explicit to students that their English-based home
language (whether Kriol or AE) and Standard Australian English
are different; discovering differences with them
• increasing the teachers’ knowledge of the differences
between SAE and Kriol or AE so they can identify potential area
of difficulty for their students
• providing specific strategies for teaching Standard English
as a second dialect
is also an emphasis on appropriate code choice and and the need
for code-switching in real life.
article headed “Growing interest in teaching standard English
as a second dialect” reports on packages (video and text)
produced by education departments in two states to provide teachers
with useful information onAboriginal English: Deadly Eh, Cuz! in
Victoria and A Place of Belonging: Working with Aboriginal English
in New South Wales. A similar package will be released by the Queensland
Education Department later this year. Also, reported (p.2):
unit of the Department of Social Security in Canberra is planning
a video called Talkin Our Way about Aboriginal English,
aimed at increasing the awareness of staff in government departments
working with Aboriginal clients.
article also notes one reaction to the packages for teachers:
was an article printed in the Brisbane Courier Mail headlined
‘How to pick a ninny’ which said the idea behind the
package was ‘just a lazy way of perpetuating a second-rate
pidgin language that will be about as useful as spear throwing
in modern society’! OF course there were a number of indignant
letters to the editor in rebuttal but we need to realise that
attitudes to bidialectal education are not necessarily positive.
And we need to counter such arguments, citing the work of linguists,
educators and personal knowledge and experience.
issue contains several articles on games and “awareness”
and “separation” activities for use in the classroom
and with parents.