OE Global 2023 has ended
Building a Sustainable World through Open Education
Monday, October 16 • 11:00am - 11:30am
Providing Sami Resources on NDLA - Background, Description and Challenges.

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Norway is one of the countries that is home to the Sami population. There is a long history of oppression from the Norwegian authorities, which has had devastating effects on the Sami population’s way of life, language and culture. This June, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Norway will present its report.

There are many Sami languages. In Norway, three of them have the status as official languages: Northern Sami, Southern Sami and Lule Sami. All three languages are in a crisis, and two of them, Southern Sami and Lule Sami, are on the verge of extinction.

In this situation, it is vital that Sami children and youth get Sami speaking teachers and learning resources in their language. The responsibility of providing resources falls to the Sami parliament. However, since the Sami population mainly is situated in the northern part of Norway, the northern counties also have a responsibility for resources in upper secondary education. And since Norwegian Digital Learning Arena (NDLA) is a vehicle for the counties, we are in the process of publishing OER in the Sami languages.

For a few years, we in NDLA have made resources in the Southern Sami language, together with the county of Trøndelag. They employ a teacher that works at a school, to make the resources, and we publish them. Now, the same model is applied to a collaboration with Troms and Finnmark county, where they engage teachers at two schools to make resources in Science, History and Northern Sami Language. The project has started out with science, and will continue with History and Northern Sami Language. It is not just a matter of translating existing resources, both Science and History have their own Sami curricula to be covered.

In a situation where there is a shortage of Sami teachers, it is important that the teachers do not leave teaching in order to make learning resources. In this model, they stay at their schools, and make resources as a part of their job.

We in NDLA are eager to find out if OERs hold special value in this project. Will the open resources that can easily be adapted to a local context and redistributed, be received well by Sami teachers and pupils? Are there any challenges that we will face that we have not thought about yet?

The presentation will give a short introduction to NDLA, and to the situation of learning resources in Sami languages in Norway. We will move on to a description of the workflow of making the resources, and all the challenges we see in this work, for instance a shortage of Sami speaking teachers. In the end, we will invite the audience to give us advice on how to proceed, and share their experiences, so that we can learn from them.

Keywords: Indigenous people, Sami, language, collaboration, NDLA, OER

Session outcomes and takeaways: We would like the international community of OEGlobal to gain knowledge about the situation for Sami languages in Norway, and to see that also in a rich country with a strong welfare state, some groups still have a long way to go before we can say that SDG 4 is met.

We also hope to give the audience an insight into how the NDLA model can be a sustainable way to produce OER in Sami languages.

However, we come to the conference with a very humble attitude, and think that our own learning from the feedback we hope to receive, will be of great value to us.

avatar for Margreta Tveisme

Margreta Tveisme

Norwegian Digital Learning Arena (NDLA)

Monday October 16, 2023 11:00am - 11:30am MDT
Bear (S8/10) Edmonton Convention Centre