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Cherokee (ᏣᎳᎩ) is a Southern Iroquoian language spoken mainly in North Carolina (gayaleni/ᎦᏯᎴᏂ), Oklahoma (ogalahoma/ ᎣᎦᎳᎰᎹ) and Arkansas (yonegv/ᏲᏁᎬ) in the USA. Between 1,500 and 2,100 people speak Cherokee. There are two main dialects of Cherokee: The Eastern dialect  and Western dialect.

This course aims to assist Cherokee Nation community members in achieving their goals of reconnecting with, and preserving, their language through the development of specialized language learning resources.


This online program provides an effective and engaging experience for Cherokee language learners looking to learn the syllabary and build their vocabulary. One of the most exciting features is that learners can practice their listening and speaking skills with voice recognition software that is guided by native and second language speakers.


The first course in the series will teach the Cherokee syllabary and Cherokee for beginners. The project offers a new way to access Cherokee language learning tools and each course is guided by Cherokee National Treasure David Scottas well as Cherokee speaker, and 7000 Languages intern, Sean ᏙᏧᏩ Sikora.

The Cherokee syllabary was invented by Sequoyah (siquoya/ ᏏᏉᏯ), and was developed between 1809 and 1824. At first Sequoyah experimented with a writing system based on logograms, but found this cumbersome and unsuitable for Cherokee. He later developed a syllabary which was originally cursive and hand-written, but it was too difficult and expensive to produce a printed version, so he devised a new version with symbols based on letters from the Latin alphabet and Western numerals.
By 1820, thousands of Cherokees had learnt the syllabary, and by 1830, 90% were literate in their own language.Books, religious texts, almanacs and newspapers were all published using the syllabary, which was widely used for over 100 years. [Source: Omniglot]
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Nigada aniyvwi nigegudalvna ale unitloyi unadehna duyugadv gesvi. Getsinela unadanvtedi ale unotlisadi ale squu gesv tsunilvwisdanedi anatlinvtlv adanvdo gvdi.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
“One of the greatest lessons we learn as a child is to honor our Elders. Nowhere has this been instilled more than growing up in and attending the Cherokee Immersion School. As a member of the first Cherokee immersion class, it has been an incredible honor to work on this program. Organizations like 7000 Languages show that language revitalization efforts do in fact work — helping to close the gap and enable our language to be passed on from one generation to the next.”
To develop the course, 7000 Languages has partnered with Project GWY, an online learning platform that was created with the help of volunteers from the Cherokee PINS Project Foundation, Dr. Brad Montgomery-Anderson, Cherokee National Treasure David Scott, Cherokee Nation Council Member Dr. Julia Coates and former Council Member Mary Baker Shaw.
The Cherokee PINS Project Foundation is a 501(C)(3) committed to enhancing civic education and engagement between Cherokee Nation citizens who reside within the tribal reservation with the greater Cherokee community at-large.
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