Updated: 10 Rvfo-Cusē (January), 2003
How to Use This On-line Book
Yvt Nakcokv En Vnickv
"In our Muskogee World, the Spider is universally a helper."
First, don't let the size and scope of this work scare you. It actually consists of several independent parts. Each will be used at its own appropriate time. Basically, this work is designed for different students to use on different levels at the same time in the same class or for self-study with the aid of the accompanying cassette tapes and CD. In this way, some will be able to work individually--at their own pace--or, with a teacher while others may be working with and helping each other. Different people learn in different ways. Thus, the material in this book is presented several times on several levels to accommodate people's varying abilities, schedules and learning styles.
The very first thing for everyone to do is learn the alphabet and the basic sounds of the Muskogee (Creek) language. This is imperative! At first, you will be asked only to approximate the Muskogee sounds. As you become more familiar with them, you will be guided closer to the actual sounds of the language. It is merely a matter of becoming familiar with sounds you are not used to making and giving your vocal muscles time to "get in shape" to produce the right sounds. Everyone can learn all the necessary sounds in time. For those two or three really unusual sounds not common in English, there are permissible alternatives in modern Muskogee languages. (A guide to pronunciation runs through some lessons. It will help you get started but will quickly become unnecessary--it is only an approximation to the actual sounds of the language.)
The next order of business is to read all introductions and prefaces, explanations and thumb through the site. You will notice lots of information on many levels --something for everyone! There are sections on grammar ranging from the very easy to the very difficult. It is not necessary to understand every aspect of Muskogee grammar in order to begin communicating in the language. The most important sections of all consist of patterned sentences. These are what we'll study most. The grammar sections are merely references to have when needed or desired by students--a source of review. Few people speaking English actually have a complete knowledge of its rules and regulations--that doesn't seem to deter them from using and occasionally mangling English to the delight of others. If you can communicate in a language at or on any level, the function of that language is being met.
This is called an "audio-visual pattern approach" to Muskogee. Sentences will be presented, from the very simple to the very complicated. As you read the sentences, study and learn them, you will be learning the patterns of the spoken language. By substituting different words in the patterns, you will enlarge your abilities quickly. Each language seems to dictate its own methods of teaching and learning. For Muskogee, pattern sentences have brought high success to many students over the last few years. You, too, will meet success in this proven method. As you use these sentences and learn new words to substitute, you will automatically absorb the basic principles and worldview of the Muskogee language. Admittedly, we choose to use the more conservative or formal sense of grammar, word construction and spelling instead of using the many contractions and colloquial expressions favored by other excellent teachers. We have noticed over the years, that it is easier to teach contractions and colloquialisms after the full form of a word or construction has been learned and mastered. It is much harder to go from the contraction to the parent word, especially if a word can foster more than one contraction. Now, turn your attention to the information and lessons--let's get started!
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