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Judy Thompson

Judy Thompson's name is Edōsdi, which means "someone who raises up pets and children", or more simply, "someone who is a teacher." She is a member of the Tahltan Nation; her clan is crow and her crest is frog. Her English name is Judy Thompson and she was born and raised in La̱x Kxeen (Prince Rupert, BC) on Ts’msyen territory.

For almost 25 years, as a student, educator and researcher, Judy has been building relationships with Aboriginal communities, which has included connecting youth with their Elders. She has mentored students at a First Nations post-secondary institute and a community college, teaching in adult basic education and university credit programs. She developed many courses and programs, which have often included ways to Indigenize curriculum, decolonize teaching, and provide support for Aboriginal learners. Her teaching career has ranged from teaching at the primary school level, to teaching Grades 8-12 math and science courses to adult learners, to teaching university credit courses in First Nations Studies.

She completed a PhD at the University of Victoria, where she also completed an MSc in Environmental Studies. At Simon Fraser University, she completed a BSc in Kinesiology and the Professional Development Program, which lead to the completion of a professional teaching certificate.

Judy's doctoral dissertation, Hedekeyeh Hots’ih Kāhidi – "Our Ancestors Are In Us": Strengthening Our Voices Through Language Revitalization From A Tahltan Worldview, employed a Tahltan research paradigm and spoke to the ways in which the voices of her people can gain strength and healing through the revitalization of her language. Judy's doctoral research guided the development of a Tahltan Language and Culture Framework, which focuses on governance, programming, documentation, and training and professional development. Since 2012, she has been the Tahltan Language and Culture Lead for my Nation.

As a long-term resident of northern BC, she is excited to continue her learning, teaching, and research journey at UNBC, on the lands of the Lheidli T’enneh people. Her research interests include Indigenous language revitalization, Indigenous research methodologies, culturally-based curriculum, and Indigenous knowledge systems.

Dah Dẕāhge Esigits: We Write Our Language
Format: Paperback
Text Content Territories: Indigenous Canadian; First Nations; Tahltan (Nahanni);
Grade Levels: Kindergarten; 1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7;

This beautifully illustrated book teaches the language of the Tahltan nation. The Tahltan alphabet is featured with the 47 sounds of the Tahltan language. Learners can match vowels, consonants and sounds to English equivalents and symbols. It is a resource for those who can already speak Tahltan, but wish to learn to read and write as well.

From the Preface:
The (Tahltan) Alphabet was developed by linguist Colin Carter in consultation with Tahltan speakers, Elders and language instructors...The (Tahltan) phonetic, which means that every Tahltan sound is written with consistent symbols. This is different from the English alphabet where sounds can be written with various letters and combinations of them. The Tahltan alphabet is a summation of the 47 sounds of the Tahltan language. Carter and the Tahltan consultants decided to use English letters and represent specialized Tahltan sounds with more than one letter (eg dz, tl, ch) and other markings such as underlining, apostrophe and macron.

Educator Information
Recommended for Grades K-7 English Language Arts and courses in Indigenous language learning.

This book was coordinated by Edosdi Dr. Judy Thompson, developed by language leaders Angela Dennis, Regina Louis and Odelia Dennis, and illustrated by Una-Ann Moyer, Perer Morin and Tsema Igharas. The Telegraph Creek / Dease Lake dialect was contributed by Dah Dzahge Nodeside chair, Hostelma Pauline Hawkins in collaboration with fluent speakers Margery Inkster and Janet Vance from Telegraph Creek, BC. This book is produced with the intention to inspire future generations of Tahltan speakers and aid in Tahltan cultural sustainability.

Dr. Judy Thompson is an Assistant Professor in First Nations Studies at the University of Northern BC. Odelia Dennis teaches Tahltan as a second language to adults through the University of Victoria's Diploma in Indigenous Language Revitalization Program.

Additional Information
108 pages | 9.00" x 8.50" | colour and b&w drawings


Authentic Canadian Content
Authentic Indigenous Text
Authentic Indigenous Artwork