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Native American langs

These are the 7 most spoken Native American languages in the US:

Navajo. Navajo is far and away the most commonly spoken Native language in the U.S. with nearly 170,000 speakers, or almost 10 times as many speakers as each of the two languages with the next highest numbers: Yupik and Sioux. Apache, Rio Grand Keresan, Cherokee (Tsalagi) & Choctaw.

I'm surprised Anishnaabe didn't make it to the list... there is a huge revival movement where I live.

I've never thought of learning Navajo... I guess because of its use in WWII in communications... the Japanese couldn't crack the code. This is a bit daunting. Also, if you go on youtube and watch Cherokee speakers they always talk about how hard it is, even for them who grew up with it, and then there's the alphabet. Take a look: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cherokee_syllabary

Here's a really cool look at Finding Nemo in Navajo which is available to order (it's beautiful and the scene is hilarious): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeeLWl562Y4 .

I was wondering which NA language people would want to learn? Or, if you have some additional piece of info you'd like to share or a correction please comment. I'd like to find out people's interest in these languages and why they want to learn them. I want to talk with my university which has an Anishnaabe program to maybe get in contact with DL. Any cool videos? Feel free to share!

July 8, 2017



I learned a bit of Cree (I'm in Canada). I wanted to learn it because I'm Metis but felt disconnected from it. Maybe I'll pick it up again in the future :)


I'd also love to learn Cree, I'd also like to learn Mi'kmaq which is my heritage, but it's not very widely spoken and I doubt there would be enough contributors for a course.


Stories from Canada and elsewhere are welcome too ^_^ Thanks!


Does Native American in this case only include the US? If not, I would like to see at least Quechua and Mapundungun.



The thread was about the US, but feel free to include any of them from the Western Hemisphere. I've always thought Quechua for Spanish speakers will likely make it to the incubator before many others because of the # of native speakers. Almost double that of Guarani I believe.


"Native American" can be a little ambiguous, specially for L2 speakers of English.
Southern Quechua has around the same numbers as Guarani, the rest of Quechua languages have smaller numbers.


I understand that. This was posted in Duolingo in English though. I keep seeing different statistics regarding Guarani/Quechua, but either way, I think I'm really liking the Ojibwe Anishinaabemowin. I know Quechua has an impact on a few South American countries, while Guarani is mostly in Paraguay and enclaves in other nearby nations.


https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/41893820 please upvote purepecha. native american language spoken in mexico, state of michoacan


Yupik and Cherokee!


What interests you about these? :)


They sound good to me, they have no tones :D and their grammar looks interesting, and I'm interested in history and culture of their speakers too.

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I would like to have the opportunity to learn Quechua and Aymara.


I am Mi'kmaq and I have been trying for months to find sources that teach this language but I have only found sources that teach basic greetings and animal names. I want so much to learn my native language with good content.


Well, that's the fate of all of us of Amerindian descent trying to look for resources. I'm Taíno and my language went extinct but I am participating in a group trying to revive the language. They are releasing a dictionary soon. Can't wait! Usa kasi!


I was in the process of making a Giduwa Cherokee course on Memrise. Sort of got carried away and bored since the recording process takes so long.


I know this is an old post but do you speak it? I'm trying to learn at the moment (I'm EBCI so I want to speak ᎩᏚᏩ).


A wonderful topic for a post, thank you! I had a native Navajo try to teach me to count to ten on a few different occasions. Although I can "sort of" remember the words for one, two, and three, I can clearly remember him shaking his head in sorrow at my atrocious pronunciation skills (chuckle).

I grew up just a few miles away from the San Carlos Apache reservation. I hardly remember hearing the Apache language spoken when I was young, but the very few times I did, I remember being fascinated. The history of the area I grew up in, is filled with the story of the Apache and earlier native Americans.


I really would like Duolingo to have a Tupi for Portuguese speakers course... It was the most widely spoken language in the nowadays brazilian territory before the Portuguese arrive. It also influenced a lot in Brazilian Portuguese vocabulary and pronounce, being one of the biggest responsible for the differences between European and Brazilian Portuguese.

Would be nice if either Old Tupi or Nheengatu (modern Tupi variety, spoken in the state of Amazonas) made it to the Incubator.


I've been learning some Inuktitut since December. It's difficult but so damn interesting!


Personally, if we're talking about numbers, Quechua accounts for roughly ten million speakers and Aymara for two millions. They are striving languages.


Ojibwe (Anishinaabemowin) is the third-most (after the Inuit languages & Cree) commonly spoken Indigenous language in Canada, and the fourth-most widely spoken Indigenous language in North America behind Navajo, the Inuit languages, & Cree.


I'd love to give Apache a try, as I have some Apache blood. Also, it's important to keep these languages alive.


I'd love to see Anishinaabe, Cree, Yupik, and the most widely spoken Lakota, --for English speakers. Also Quechua and Aymara for Spanish speakers on Duolingo. That'd be awesome!


I'd love to learn mi'kmaq, its my heritage but I still can't speak it aside from a few words.

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