Child care facilities across the territory are receiving new Inuktut resources this summer and fall, thanks to a partnership between the Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA) and the Government of Nunavut.
"Early childhood Inuktut resources are key to keeping our language alive," stated Minister of Education David Joanasie.
"Children learn better when their learning tools reflect their environment, language and culture. These Nunavut-developed resources will certainly enable our young generations to preserve and strengthen their Inuit identity.”
The spring resource boxes include: tray puzzles; floor puzzles; Arctic animal puppets – polar bear, muskox, caribou, rabbit and fox; puppet storybooks, such as Tuktu's Journey; i, pi, ti, ki playing cards; high-contrast books depicting Inuit clothing and shapes and patterns; a search-and-find book; sequence books – Making a Qamutiik and Fishing in the Summertime; a baby sign-language book; and daily activity cards.
"I am proud to share these early childhood education resources which reflect our language and culture," stated QIA president P.J. Akeeagok.
"These puzzles, toys, and books allow our children to learn, play, and imagine themselves in a world that celebrates our Inuk identity and mother tongue."
QIA and the Department of Education have each contributed $700,000 toward these early-childhood resources, with a commitment to $1.8 million over three years.
The resources are being distributed to 55 licensed facilities, including after-school and preschool programs.