Aesop Kwnja'

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Dinak'i Ch'its'utozre 3

10 letters of the alphabet are introduced via these two stories -- Nidots'o Chela'ena Yats'notasdidatl' [How the boys escaped] -Translation of a Tena Tale / by Betty Petruska --Ts'ek'its'a Kwnja' [Ts'ek'its'a's story] from a story told by Wassillie Petruska.
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Dotron' Yoko' K'onast'wk

A folklore story told to Ottie G. Semaken of Kaltag, Alaska by his father. A magic man who is able to change his shape transforms into a crow. He steals the sun, moon, and a star from the chief of a neighboring village through trickery to bring light to his own village.
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Jezra

A folktale where one old woman tricks another out of her winter food stores. The second woman then disguises herself as a man and tricks the the first woman into feeding her.
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K'idi'onh Ts'inh Heye

Three folktales translated by Betty Petruska. K’altsa [Fox]: An old woman unwisely travels with a strange man who leaves her on the flats to freeze to death. Dina Chwh [Giant]: Two children disobey their parents and are eaten by a giant. Nosdlaghe [Chinook Salmon]: A young woman finds a talking head which is thrown down an ice hole which a girl follows and has an adventure.
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Nikolai Hwch'ihwzoya'

A collection of nine traditional stories which previously were passed down orally.
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Nikolai Reader

A collection of short historical stories related to the Upper Kuskokwim Region.
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Nune Itrih

Traditional story translated by Helen Dennis from the Koyukon version to Upper Kuskokwim with accompanying English translation. The adventures of a porcupine with a muskrat, mink otter, beaver and bear are recounted.
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Tildzidza Diz'a Ch'idogheltanh

A fable where mouse rescues his uncle from a can. The uncle has learned that thieves are eventually punished.
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Tinde Ts’iyozra’

This is the story of a boy named Tinde, and the construction of a birch bark canoe with each of the different steps illustrated to show how it is done.
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Tok'e Shisr

The fairy tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears retold in Upper Kuskokwim Athabascan.
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Yada Uzazełts’onh Advanced

An advanced version of a picture book describing what two boys hear.
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Aesop Kwnja'

Aesop Kwnja'
Noghoya ił Dineje ił “The Frog and the Moose” and Nidats’o Hi’ił Michala’ Detsitł’a Ts’idiyok Heye’e Shirs “Why the Bear has a Short Tail”
by Betty Petruska
Illustrated by Ray Collins
A Production of the Athapaskan Bilingual Program Alaska State Operated School System 650 International Airport Road Anchorage, Alaska 99502
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A Production of the Athapaskan Bilingual Program Alaska State Operated School System 650 International Airport Road Anchorage, Alaska 99502 A production of the Nikolai Cross-Cultural Communication Program, Alaska State Operated School System, 650 International Airport Road, Anchorage, Alaska 99502. Use of this material is restricted to schools cooperating in the Bilingual Education Program. All rights, including the right to reproduce all or part of the contents in any form are reserved by the Athabaskan Bilingual Program. Printed by Alaska State Operated Schools Anchorage, Alaska 99502 3-73-200
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Noghoya ił Dineje ił The Frog and the Moose
“My dad,” said the little frog.
To the big frog which was sitting at the edge of the pond.
I saw something big.
It was big as a mountain.
It had horns and its legs were long.
It had space between its foot.”
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“Look at me,” he said and blew himself up.
“Was it this big?” he asked the little frog.
“Bigger than that,” said the little frog.
He made himself bigger.
“It was bigger than that,” he told his dad.
His dad took a big breath and was getting bigger.
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He said, “Was it this big…” when he blew up
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Nidats’o Hi’ił Michala’ Detsitł’a Ts’idiyok Heye’e Shirs (Why the Bear has a short tail)
One day a bear walked up to a fox and said he was hungry.
Fox was carrying fish with rope running through them.
“Never saw that much fish. From where?” he asked the fox
The fox wanted to lie to the bear.
I never got them myself. The bear wouldn’t find out, he was thinking.
“I caught all of them,” Fox “I catch all the fish.”
“They are not hard to catch,” he said.
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“Teach me,” said the bear.
“Ok,” said the fox while he was smiling.
Walk to the river and put your tail in the water and be quiet, wait for the fish.”
If fish bite, it will pain a little.
But, if you have your tail in the water longer you will catch more fish.”
The bear walked to the river and did what the fox had told him to do.
The water was really cold.
Even his tail was getting colder.
It started paining but he still had it in the water.
He was thinking, fish must be biting it.
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Finally around noon he was thinking he caught enough fish.
He was going to take the fish out so he was going to get up, but he couldn’t.
It froze over with his tail
He pulled his tail but no so he tried harder and got himself loose.
Part of his tail got left behind.
Big one. It happened long ago.
Now the bear has short tail.
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Dinak'i Ch'its'utozre 3

Dinak'i Ch'its'utozre 3
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Sheep
Where do sheep stay?
Sheep stay in the mountains.
Crow
There is a crow.
Crow is flying.
Crow is flying up there.
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Robin
There is a robin.
What is robin doing?
Robin is making a nest.
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Camp robber
There is a camp robber.
Where does camp robber stay in the winter?
Camp robber stays around here all the time.
Camp robber always steal.
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Fish
Here is fish.
What is the fish’s name?
It is a pike.
Pikes can be caught with a hook.
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Willow
There is willow.
Where does willow grow?
Willows grow along the river.
Moose and beaver eat willows.
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Sled
Good sled
What is it made of?
It is made with birch.
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Floating Moss
There is floating moss
What is a floating moss?
Floating moss is a plant.
Floating moss grow on top of water.
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How the Boys Escaped
Two boys were shooting arrows when one lost his arrow.
They were looking around for it when they found a house and climbed to the top of it.
When they peaked it, down there in a big bowl there was an ice cream.
They went inside and ate it.
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After that one person hid under a big rock.
The other one hid under a pillow.
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They were staying there when they heard a person walk in.
They heard her kick the bowl
She said, “Who ate what was inside you?”
The bowl said, “One is sitting under the big rock.”
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The other one is under the pillow.
The woman swallowed them and they were inside her stomach
One had a small knife while the other one had a sharpening stone.
They cut through her stomach and ran out.
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Ts’ek’its’a’s Story
They used to catch ground squirrel with snares.
Your cousin, Ts’ek’its’a, that’s how she used to catch them
She only used snares to catch ground squirrels
Up the swift fork she would carry burning punk, they used to say
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She used it for matches.
When she sees something she would walk around it
She didn’t have a dog, nothing at all.
She didn’t have any gun or a bow.
Nobody was with her, she was alone in doing this.
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She used to do this while her younger brother went canoeing downriver.
They used to say, “When her younger brother canoes back to Telida he would walk after his sister up toward the mountains.”
Lots of ground squirrels.
When he finally reach her she had dried ground squirrels on a drying rack.
One time when it was getting dark she fried a ground squirrel for supper.
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She ate that and went to bed.
It became dark.
Dark.
Then she found out that something walked to camp.
The fire was small.
She had grass tied together which she picked up and poked into the small fire.
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That one she put under the animal’s belly
Then it started burning.
Then “she said” they said
It lighted up the forest down below
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That was her news
She told the story of how she burned the scary one.
The punk she always used that to make fire with so she always had it burning.
She also had extra punk to replace when one is burning out. That’s what they used to do when there was no matches.
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Dotron' Yoko' K'onast'wk

Dotron' Yoko' K'onast'wk
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Long ago a raven was flying around where there were houses, he was looking for light.
Up on the hill there was a house where the chief stayed.
He had his granddaughter who stayed with him, she didn’t want to get married.
From all over boys came, but she did not want to marry them.
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Where people were staying it was always dark.
They said the chief was staying in another house, he knew that.
The people send message to the raven.
The chief who was staying at the end of land had the sun and moon in his house.
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He turned himself into a raven and took off.
It got dark, but he kept flying.
Finally he reached where there was daylight, then he could see.
He flew to where the chief had the sun.
He landed on top of a spruce tree near the house.
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Late evening girls went down to the waterhole for water.
All except the girl who didn’t like boys.
After the girls packed water she walked to the waterhole.
The raven turned himself into a spruce needle.
It fell into the waterhole.
The girl who didn’t like boys went down there.
She walked to the waterhole, then she got real thirsty, that never happened to her before.
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She got so thirsty she put her bucket in the water and started to drink water.
She never got this thirsty before.
When she lifted her pot there was a spruce needle in it.
She poured it back in the hole because she didn’t want to drink water with it.
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She scooped up another water and the spruce needle floated back in there.
She kept pouring the water back but the spruce needle kept going in the bucket.
Finally she said, “what is it doing,” and drank water with it.
After she drank the water she scooped up another bucket and walked home with it.
She packed the water and went back to the underground house.
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After she drank the water she was carrying a baby.
Her parents knew she never walked around outside.
She had a baby.
Her grandpa and grandma really loved the baby.
He was growing very fast.
He started to crawl around.
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His grandpa had the sun and moon hanging on the wall so that they will know he was rich.
They were hanging on the wall when the baby was crawling around.
One day he started to cry and couldn’t stop crying.
His grandpa said.
“Why is he crying,”
He was crying so hard he was choking and pointing at the things on the wall.
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Then his grandpa said, “He wants his grandpa’s sun,” he said and put it down for him.
He started to play with it on the floor.
He was always rolling the sun on the floor.
Every day he was playing with it.
They started to leave him alone cause they found out he only wanted to play with the sun.
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While he was carrying the sun he was wondering how he could take it out.
Again he started to cry with his grandma.
He was always pointing at his grandma’s bag while playing with the sun.
“He wants the bag,” they said and put it down for him and gave it to him.
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He kept putting the sun in the bag.
He started to cry again.
He kept pointing to the things on the wall.
But they kept giving him the sun.
He was crying so hard he almost blacked out.
Then they said, “Maybe he’s crying for the moon.”
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As the days go by he kept growing.
One day he started to cry again.
Only the sun was hanging on the wall and he wanted that.
He kept pointing at it and starts crying.
He almost blacked out because he was crying so much.
His grandpa put it down for him.
He said, “This is what he wants,” and gave it to him.
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He started to play with it.
He would laugh and go in the porch and come back in.
He was doing this while he watched his grandpa, grandma, and his mom.
“Why don’t they go out,” he was thinking.
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They forgot about him and they all went out.
I hope they’re gone he was thinking while he put everything in the bag.
While nobody came back he put the sack on his back and crawled out.
Then he turned himself into a raven.
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He flew off with the sack but it was really heavy.
So he landed back in the same place where he landed when he first came and turned himself into a spruce needle and went into the water hole.
That is when they saw him.
His grandpa remembered him and ran back inside.
Gone!
He was gone, what was inside the star, sun and moon were gone.
All was gone.
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They all ran out.
The raven was sitting on top of a spruce tree and was putting everything in the bag.
Then they remembered there was a raven down river that turns himself into anything.
His grandpa got really mad.
“The scaly skin, skinny legs was born to my daughter so he would do a thing like this to me,” he said.
He grabbed his bow and arrow so he could shoot him.
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The raven packed everything before his grandpa could shoot him.
As he was flying, he would go so far and then take a rest.
He kept doing that until he reached home.
When he reached home it was still dark.
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He landed close by a house.
He started cawing, “daylight, daylight,” that is when the people heard him.
The people heard him and said, “What is he saying
Only the chief in the other village has that.”
Then they found out it was him.
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He was always cawing saying daylight.
He flew and put everything in his house.
Then he became a man.
He took everything out of the bag and released them into the sky.
He put the star in the sky first.
Before that there was no star.
There was a little light from the star.
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Then he put the moon in the sky and it got a little brighter.
Last he put the sun in the sky and it got really bright.
The people got really happy and gave him all kinds of food.
The people kept giving him food so he kept on eating and eating.
“They should bring more food,” he was thinking.
Then they kept bringing him more food and he kept eating.
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There was a good sunshine when he thought, “I should turn back into a raven.”
He turned himself into a raven and flew away.
There is daylight.
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They gave him the moon.
He started to play with it on the floor.
They gave him the bag then he was always laughing and kept putting the things in there and walk outside.
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Jezra

Jezra
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One day one woman said to the other.
“Wait we will eat out of only one cache and then after that we can eat out of mine maybe that way food will last with us,” said one woman.
The one woman fell in favor for that.
From then on they were eating only out of one cache.
They finally finished everything from one cache.
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Then the old woman who had planned it stopped giving food to the other old woman. The other old woman started getting weak.
When she went to bed she started to eat by herself.
She would go in the cache for fish skin.
She would eat the fish skin.
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The other old woman would eat scraps of food like fish skin and fishskin bag. She was getting weaker and started to think what she should do to the other old woman.
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The old woman was thinking maybe if I lied to her she will give me food.
I guess she had marten coat so she brought that out.
The other old woman was asleep across from her.
She put on some nice clothes.
She put on only the nicest looking clothes.
She clothed herself like a man.
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And then she told the punk to snore.
With his clothes he made it look like somebody was laying there.
Then she told the birch punk to snore.
Then the punk started to snore.
While the punk was snoring she walked out.
Finally she pretended she walked to the door and brushed herself off.
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When the other old woman woke up she heard a man brushing himself off from outside.
When she looked across for the other old lady she was there snoring.
Then the man started to walk in.
She was wondering who it was so she was looking for him.
Then a man was walking in.
He walked in and sat down.
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“Whoosh! I am tired,” he said.
For him the old woman started to move around.
She served him good food.
The man ate.
“I came from far away,” he told her.
“She told her she should make her food for the journey.
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I finished what I had.
It was really nice I found this place,” he said.
She walked back out.
For him she brought in what she thinks was a good dry fish.
She put it in the bag for him.
“The other old woman had lost her strength,” she told him.
“Oh,” he said.
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The old woman was eating the lunch that was made for her secretly.
The woman went back to bed, started to snore then she walked back in.
She put the punk back where it used to be.
She went back to bed after she ate.
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When spring came she ran out of food again which was made for her earlier.
She got her strength back.
“Soon somebody will come for me,” she told her.
Then the stingy woman threw her a real dried fish, it was real dry and hard.
She ate that one.
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She was getting stronger.
“For nothing.
You’re talking
for nothing,” she told her.
But no.
“For nothing.
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Finally they both became camprobbers and flew away.
The end.
I really told a story.
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K'idi'onh Ts'inh Heye

K'idi'onh Ts'inh Heye
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Long ago there lived an old lady.
She lived along the edge of a lake, in underground house by herself.
She went down for water.
Carrying a small birchbark bucket.
She looked up the river and saw somebody walking towards her.
She walked back up and put kettle on the stove.
She went back down to look for him when she saw him walking below her.
He was wearing an old rabbit skin coat, really torn.
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“Where are you walking?” asked the old lady.
“I’m just walking around,” he told her.
The old lady told him, “She warmed up some tea”, but he didn’t want to walk up the bank.
“Go with me,” he told her.
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She said yes and pack up.
She grabbed her scraper and sewing bag and walked back out to him.
“Ready,” he asked her.
“Get on my back,” he told her, so she done that.
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To her it felt like they were flying.
With a needle she sewed his coat.
She sewed the whole thing.
When it got dark he told her “to get down
I’m tired,” he told her.
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When she got down he walked away from her.
When she looked around it was on a tundra.
There were no stick around and she didn’t know what to do.
It really started to snow.
There was nothing to start fire with so she froze there.
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Giant
There was a married couple.
They had two children.
They stayed home during the day.
Their mom check rabbit snares while their dad goes hunting.
They come home when it gets dark.
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Before they leave they talk to their children “don’t go outside.”
They go from them.
When they were gone the boy told his younger sister, “Let’s walk down to the bank.”
She said no, but he walked with her to the bank.
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“Let’s go in the boat,” he told his sister.
She said no.
“Hurry,” said the boy, and they walked over the bank.
They untied the boat and went in.
They pushed out.
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They started to float out.
They were trying to paddle ashore but they kept floating downriver.
When it was getting dark they were near the shore.
Then there was a man laying on the bank.
“Paddle ashore,” he told them.
They walked up the bank to him.
He took them to underground house and fed them.
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In a little while they got sleepy.
“Go to bed,” the big man told them.
They were afraid but went to bed and went to sleep.
Then the big man got up and snuck up to them.
He swallowed the boy first then his little sister.
After that he went to sleep.
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After dark their parents came home.
There were no children.
They walked to the bank and then there was no boat.
They searched but nothing showed up.
They went in the canoe and paddled out.
They paddled all day.
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It was getting dark.
They were sneaking along the bank when suddenly there was the boat.
They snuck up the bank.
Then there was a light from the underground house.
They snuck to the house and walked to the smoke hole.
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He looked down the smoke hole and saw the big man laying down and snoring.
He snuck back and told his wife to wait for him there.
He snuck inside carrying a knife.
He cut off the big man’s neck.
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He called his wife and she walked in.
They helped each other and cut open his stomach.
They found out the big man had swallowed their children.
They took them out.
They were laughing cause they felt good.
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They walked back out and set the house on fire.
They went back to the boat and went home.
“From now on don’t go out,” they told their children.
“Who was first to say let’s go downriver?”
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The boy blamed it on his sister.
“You said it first, that’s why I went in the boat,” he told her.
Their parents told them, from now on, don’t do that again.
They said yes. That’s all.
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Chinook Salmon
There lived an old woman.
Her granddaughter also lived with her.
During the day grandma would walk and check her snare.
The granddaughter would backpack wood.
After that she would stay inside.
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She was making sinew thread when suddenly a man walked in.
She gave him tea.
She gave him tea and dry fish.
After that they started talking.
It was getting dark.
“Soon Grandma will come back,” she told him.
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She started cooking for her grandma when she heard her walking back.
She hid the man in the corner.
Grandma walked back in.
“What were you doing all day you never cook?” she told her.
“I work too hard,” she told her grandma.
After they ate she went back across the room and sat down.
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While she was making sinew thread she would sometimes laugh.
It got dark so they went to bed.
Her grandma would hear her laughing once in a while across from her.
Morning came when they woke up.
She made tea for her grandma.
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After that grandma went walking to check snare.
Her granddaughter went for wood.
She quit and walked back in.
She started to talk to the man again.
She fed him and they were talking all day.
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While that was going on she never cooked.
She hid the man when her grandma was walking back.
She started cooking fast for her grandma.
“What were you doing the tea isn’t warm,” she told her granddaughter.
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After they ate she sat across the room and started sewing.
She would start laughing every so often.
They went to bed but she would laugh all night.
Morning came she got up and ate.
She went for wood while her grandma stayed behind.
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She started to search in her granddaughter’s belongs.
Then there was a human head there.
She grabbed it and poked its eyeball with her needle.
She throw it out.
It was cause of this my granddaughter don’t work she was thinking.
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The granddaughter came back in.
She went back to where her blankets were and started to look around in her bag.
Then she started being sad.
“Drink tea,” her grandma told her but she went out and walked to the bank.
There on the trail it was bloody.
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She went to the bank and walked to the waterhole.
There was only blood as far as the waterhole
She threw herself in the waterhold, but she started to float again.
Again she threw herself in.
That’s all she knew.
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Finally she came to herself.
She was laying on the grass.
She got up and started walking on a trail that was there.
She saw a house.
There was noise coming from there so she started walking over there.
Upriver side there was an underground house.
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She walked over there and walked in.
There was a small grandma sitting in there, “What are you doing my grandchild?” she said.
“I’m walking around,” she told her.
She served her tea, dry fish and ice cream.
She started staying with grandma cause it was getting dark.
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Then a small boy came in.
“Grandma,” he said, “when it dark they want you to watch the fun.”
“Yes,” she said.
When it got dark she dressed up nicely.
“Grandchild go with me,” she said.
“So we’ll be entertained,” she told her.
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They walked out and went to where the dance was.
When they walked in the crowd started to yell and clapping their hands.
They sat beside the doorway and watched the dancers.
There were three boys playing.
The girl turned her head towards them then she saw a man with a long nose.
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His eyes were poked out but he was playing drums.
“Was it for this person that I threw myself in the water?” she was thinking.
She felt ashamed and put her head down.
They left and walked back to their house.
Morning came and they got up.
Her grandmother told her, “Go out and walk around with your friend.” So she went out.
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There was a ball game going on out on the ice so she walked over there.
They told her, “You play too,” but she just stood there.
Then a boy grabbed her.
He said, “What’s wrong with this one?” and throw her on the ground.
That’s how he killed her.
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Nikolai Hwch'ihwzoya'

Nikolai Hwch'ihwzoya'
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Nikolai Reader

Nikolai Reader
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The First Airplane
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The first airplane came in 1924.
It flew from Fairbanks to McGrath.
The pilot was Ben Eilson.
Miska went to Telida that day.
He was out hunting moose.
There was a rattling noise in the sky.
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Miska looked up and saw the plane.
He stood on his snowshoes and watched the plane.
Miska was frightened but he didn’t run away.
He didn’t get a moose.
He went home that day with no meat.
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The mail
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Miska Deaphon carried the mail
in 1930 and 1931.
It was Miska who had a lot of dogs.
He had a team of twenty-one dogs.
They pulled his sled.
The sled carried really heavy mail.
Miska’s mail route was real long.
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Dog Teams
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Long ago the people here didn’t have dogs.
The white men brought the first dogs.
The people started raising dogs.
They had no lead dogs.
A man ran along in front of his sled.
The dogs followed the man.
That is how the sleds were steered.
After the snow machines came, there were fewer dogs.
Now there are no dog teams left, but maybe there will be one soon.
Some people are beginning to raise dogs again.
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The First Steam Boat
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The first steam boat came up to Old Nikolai in 1892.
Miska Deaphon’s father went down to Medfra in a canoe.
He was in the steamboat too.
The captain didn’t know the river channel.
Miska’s father didn’t speak English, but he knew the river channel well.
The water was very low.
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The boat almost got stuck on a sand bar.
The steam boat finally reached Old Nikolai.
It was stuck there for the winter.
The boat was carrying groceries.
In the spring, it went back down the river.
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Old Nikolai
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The Russian Orthodox Priest came up the river in 1892.
The Native people lived in a village beyond where the steam boat was stuck.
Nikolai Alexia was the chief.
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He was Miska Deaphon’s grandfather.
The priest told Nikolai Alexia to move the village to the place where the steam boat was stuck.
Nikolai and the people moved the village.
They named their new village Nikolai.
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They lived there until 1918.
The village isn’t there anymore.
The place where it stood is called Old Nikolai now.
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Sickness
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Old Nikolai had many people in it.
Nikolai Alexia, Miska Deaphon’s grandfather, had five sons.
A very bad sickness came to the village.
Don’t know what kind of sickness came.
Three of Nikolai’s sons died.
Many other people also died.
They died very quickly.
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Big River Village
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Bobby Esai was born near McGrath.
He lived there with his parents.
When Bobby was about eight, his parents died.
Bobby went to live in Big River Village.
There were two Native families there.
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There was a store and a roadhouse.
Wintertime, people came.
Big River Village was on the Iditarod Trail.
Travelers came from Anchorage.
Some came from Nenana.
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They were hauling mail by dog team.
They use a lot of dogs.
Some were just walking.
They use snowshoes when there’s lots of snow.
Big River Village was between Nikolai and McGrath.
Now there are no more people there.
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A Store
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Some men from Susitna were hunting sheep.
They met some men from Nikolai at Farewell.
The Susitna men told about a store.
They said the store was at Susitna.
The people in Nikolai wanted to go to the store.
The next winter after freeze-up, they went to Susitna Station.
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Catching Fish with a Trap
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Long ago there were lots of fish.
More than people could use.
They use a fish trap to catch King Salmon.
The traps were on each side.
It was made from split spruce
They were tied together by spruce roots.
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Poles were driven into river bottom.
The traps were tied to the poles.
They made them as wide as the river.
The fence went all the way across the river.
The men worked in the water.
Some places the water level was high as their waist.
It was very cold water.
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King Salmon
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Many King Salmon were caught in the trap.
The men took the fish from the trap.
They packed them up the bank.
They will be cut, but they are too fresh.
Ladies put rope through them.
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They put the rope through the gills.
Lots of fish on the rope.
They put it back in the water.
It stays overnight like that.
When morning comes the ladies cut them.
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Salmon Heads
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The heads were cut off the salmon.
They were strung on ropes.
They put it back in the river to rot.
Sometimes they were put in kegs to rot.
They boil them and eat it.
Sometimes they were like that.
Oil came to the top when the heads boiled.
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They use clam shell to scoop the grease from top.
The oil was put in moose bladder.
In moose bladder they pour the grease.
They eat it in winter time.
Fishhead oil and powdered fish were mixed together with bear fat and moose fat.
It made very good ice cream.
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Whole Salmon and Salmon Eggs
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Salmon eggs are eaten.
Sometimes they were dried.
Sometimes they were put in birch basket and buried.
Fish too they bury them whole in baskets.
They dig a pit.
They line the pit with birch bark.
Salmon are gutted out.
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They put them in the pit.
They are put on top of each other.
Then it is covered with birch bark.
They bring them back out in the winter.
They eat them, uncooked.
They sometimes boil it.
They smell, but they taste good.
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They take the dried ones out.
The children keep the smoke going constantly.
The dried fish were stored underground.
Sometimes the cache was hidden.
This was to protect the winter food store.
They don’t want their dried fish stolen.
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After fishing next was hunting.
From around here they walk to the hills. (Alaska Range)
Just by walking.
They had backpacks.
Even the dogs had backpacks.
They would kill moose, caribou and sheep.
They dry the meat.
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They save the hide too.
They make skin boats out of them.
It takes about three or four skins to make a boat.
They sew them together.
They fill the skin boat with meat.
They float back downstream to their houses.
Some come from far away.
Some came from Sleetmute.
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Fresh Meat
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After freeze up, the men hunted for fresh meat.
For moose and caribou.
Even beaver, but they never kill the big ones.
They only kill the middle-size beavers.
That way they don’t catch all the beavers.
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They stayed in the pond in their houses.
They also hunted for bears.
They look for bear dens and when they find them they shoot them.
Now when you want to hunt you can’t do it.
Now there are hunting laws and game wardens watching.
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Meat
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The people always ate meat.
When winter arrives the people walked to the hills. (Alaska Range)
They hunt for moose, caribou, sheep and bear.
They make dry meat for the winter.
All the people help each other.
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They make skin boat out of moose hide.
Three skins make one boat.
They load the skin boat with meat, for the trip home.
Dina’ena dinagholt’a’ ts’e’ nilane nichoghe hit’anh.
All the people have lots of meat.
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Trapping
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Trapping was done in the winter.
The fur is thicker then.
The whole family went.
They load the sled.
They hook up about seven dogs.
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When snow is deep the man walked in front of the dogs.
Walk in snow shoes.
Sometimes the woman walked behind the sled.
She walked in snow shoes packing the baby.
The man would sometimes ski alongside the sled.
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We take lunch.
We also take aluminum foil.
We will cook pike in it.
Sometimes by cooking stick.
We put the stick over the fire and fry the fish.
Everybody used to go fishing long ago.
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We catch pike.
Sometimes we catch as many as twenty or more pike.
Sometimes nothing.
We feel sad when we don’t catch any.
Then we don’t have any fish to fry.
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Whitefish Nets
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For Broad Whitefish they put net under ice.
They make three holes.
The net is about thirty feet long.
It has a long rope on each side.
One rope is tied to a stick they use another stick to maneuver it around.
The one who has fish net pulls the rope.
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He pushes the stick under the ice to the last hole.
The net has floats on the top.
It has sinkers on the bottom.
Each end of the net is tied to one stick.
The stick are pushed into the mud.
The stick is above the ice used to pull the net out.
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Whitefish Catch
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Every morning you start the snow machine.
We check the net on the river.
Two people check the net.
They open the ice hole.
One person pull the net.
The one who pulls the net take fish out.
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He calls for the other person.
That person pulls the rope.
The net goes back under the ice.
The poles are put back in place.
Lots of nets are set.
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Salmon River
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Salmon River is a good place to fish.
They come in the month of July.
A man stands on top of the hill.
He looks for fish.
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When he sees something red in the water, he hollers.
All the people come running.
They fish with rods.
They catch four fish sometimes nothing.
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Nune Itrih

Nune Itrih

Tildzidza Diz'a Ch'idogheltanh

Tildzidza Diz'a Ch'idogheltanh
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The Mouse Saves His Uncle
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There was a mouse who lived in a house with his wife.
They lived together with their children underground.
Light only came in through the doorway.
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There’s a path going across to where an old lady lived.
There was a lot of good food there and the father mouse knew it.
Everyday he goes out and hunts.
The next morning he got up and went out.
He walked across to the house.
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He came up in the corner of the floor.
He stops and looks both ways and he listens but…
But it was quiet.
Now is my chance to look around, he was thinking.
He kept running around back and forth while listening.
A stool was sitting there so he looks and looks at it.
This is the way I’ll go up, he was thinking.
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He was trying to jump up when he made it.
He saw ice cream that was in a bowl.
He jumped toward it. He was thinking, he will eat a good ice cream.
He started eating it.
He kept eating until his stomach was really full.
His stomach was really full, I guess.
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How scary!
How will I jump down, he was thinking.
He started to worry.
How am I going to jump way down there, he was thinking.
He saw a stool setting there and ran to it.
So he jumped down.
I’ll walk home he was thinking.
He ran to the hole in the corner.
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Haa!
I was starting to get food for my kids, he was thinking.
So he started to turn around.
He went back to where there was food.
There was a stick there so he hopped on it.
Down there his uncle was sitting.
Uncle, what are you doing? he said.
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He started to holler at him.
I came here for food when I fell in a trap.
“Somebody set the trap,” he said.
“Help me somehow,” he said.
“How will I get out,” he was thinking.
So he was looking at him.
“Haa! Haa!
Wait, I’ll go for my family,” he was thinking.
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He went home and told the rest of his family.
There was another stick there which they put in place.
One by one they got on the end of the stick.
Their dad was at the other end of the stick.
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First, one went in there.
Father was holding his hand as another came up.
They were holding each other’s hands.
The one near the bottom of the can took hold of his uncle.
He took a good hold of him.
The uncle said, “Pull me out.”
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Then they carefully pulled him.
They were pulling each other.
Then they finally pulled him up.
They carefully started down the stick.
They hugged each other for joy.
They were so happy that they had tears in their eyes because they had saved their uncle.
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Then they started back.
Their uncle started to give them advice from his own experiences.
“See there, if you steal, someday you will get punished,” he was saying.
That's all.
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Tinde Ts’iyozra’

Tinde Ts’iyozra’
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Soon it will be summer. In summer the lakes and rivers are not frozen. Tinde likes to go canoeing in the summer.
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Etra will show Tinde how to make a canoe. It will be a birch bark canoe. Tinde is very excited. Now he will have his own canoe.
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Etra and Tinde are peeling the bark from four good birch trees.
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They are putting the bark in the water to soften it.
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Now Etra and Tinde are making the gunwales.
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Now Etra is putting the ribs in the canoe. The ribs are two fingers wide. The ribs are one foot apart. The ribs will make the canoe strong.
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The women are sewing the soft bark to the gunwales. They are sewing the soft bark with spruce roots.
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Tinde is collecting many stones.
He is putting the stones in the canoe. The stones will keep the canoe in shape.
Etra and Tinde leave the stones in the canoe for ten days.
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Anna is in the woods. She is getting spruce gum. She is putting the gum in a pot. The pot is made of birch bark.
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Now Etra and Tinde are taking the stones out of the canoe. They are turning the canoe over.
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The women are sealing the seams of the canoe. They are sealing the canoe with spruce gum.
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Now the canoe is finished.
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Tinde likes his new canoe. Tinde will explore many strange places in his new canoe.
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Tok'e Shisr

Tok'e Shisr
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Three Bears
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One day three bears were staying home.
Ts’elk’inh łonh t’iyats’ nichoh heninh ch’ito’ shisr,
One was a real big bear, he was the daddy bear.
ts’elk’inh hik’ay ts’e’ digholts’itł’a heninh łide shisr ch’onh,
One was a smaller bear, she was the mama bear.
ts’ełk’inh chu’ nits’itł’aye shisr ch’igoya.
One was a small bear he was a baby bear.
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There was a big plate there belonging to daddy bear. The medium size plate belonged to mama bear. The smaller plate belonged to baby bear.
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One day they were going to eat, but the food was hot.
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They were going to walk outside because the food was hot.
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While they were gone a golden haired girl was playing outside when she got tired.
She knocked on the door, but no one answered.
There was nobody there, but she went inside.
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She was thinking the food smelled good.
She tasted food from the big plate, but she said it was too hot.
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She sat on the big chair but it was too hard.
She tried another chair but it was like a feather.
Then she sat on the smallest chair when it broke.
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The girl got really sleepy so she walked up the stairs.
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She laid down on the big bed, but it was too hard.
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She tried the mother’s bed and said, “This is like a feather.”
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She tried the baby bear’s bed then fell fast asleep.
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“Who tasted my food?” said papa bear.
“Who tasted my food?” said mama bear.
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“Who ate all my food?” said the baby bear and started to cry.
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“Who sat here?” said mama bear.
“Who broke mine?” said the baby bear and started to cry.
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All three of them walked up the stairs.
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“Who laid on my bed?” said papa bear.
Mama bear said the same thing
“Who is that sleeping on my bed?” said the baby bear.
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The girl woke up, then she saw the three bears. She got really scared.
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The three bears never saw her again.
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Yada Uzazełts’onh Advanced

Yada Uzazełts’onh Advanced
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Something that glides
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Listen!
What do you hear?
You hear something that glides.
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Listen!
What do you hear?
You hear something that glides.
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Is it flying toward us?
Yes
Who is in there?
I don’t know.
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Come
Let’s walk toward it.
We’ll walk to the glider.
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Hurry up!
The glider is landing.
Who is in there?
Who is that coming?
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Morning
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Hurry up!
We might miss out.
School is ready.
Let’s go there now.
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Run!
There’s the teacher.
Yelling.
Yelling at us.
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We work
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There’s my mom.
What is my mom doing?
Washing clothes.
She’s working hard.
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I am working.
I’m helping my mom.
She’s washing clothes.
I’m washing helping my mom.
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Mom!
Here I am!
I will help you.
What will I do?
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My mom feels good.
I feel good.
I helped my mom.
My mom and I washed clothes.
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Work
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Work.
My dad is working.
He’s working real hard.
Dragging up logs.
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I will work.
I will help my dad.
He’s dragging up logs.
I’ll help him drag logs.
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Dad.
Here I am.
I’ll help you.
What will I do?
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I helped my dad.
I dragged logs with him.
My dad feels good.
I feel good.
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Duck
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Spring!
It is spring now.
I hear ducks.
I hear ducks calling.
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He quiet!
You hear ducks.
I hear ducks.
Duck is calling another duck.
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Mosquito.
I heard a mosquito.
Where is it?
I don’t know.
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You see it?
I don’t see it.
I don’t see the mosquito.
I hear the mosquito.
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Listen.
Do you hear mosquito?
I don’t.
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Ouch!
I found the mosquito.
Here, it’s on my arm.
Mosquito poked me.
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In the woods
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Come.
Let’s go in the trees.
Let’s look at the spruce trees.
Let’s look at the chainsaw.
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Come.
They said don’t go in the trees.
We wouldn’t look in the trees.
We wouldn’t look at the spruce trees.
We wouldn’t look at the chainsaw.
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Snowmachine
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Snow!
Did it snow?
Did it snow last night?
I feel good when it snowed.
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Window!
Open the window.
Look at the ground.
Is it white?
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Yes!
The ground is white.
It is snow time again.
Come outside.
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Snowmachine!
Let’s drive around outside.
Let’s drive on the new snow.
When we drive it’s good.
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Where?
Where is the bee?
You see it?
Where is the bee?
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Look!
Look on the leaves.
There’s the bee.
Sitting on the leaves.
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Where is the bee?
On the white leaf.
Look on the white leaf.
There’s the bee.
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Come!
He’s not shooting ducks.
What is he shooting?
He’s shooting caribou?
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Come!
He’s not shooting caribou.
What is my dad shooting?
Nothing!
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My dad is fixing his gun.
He’s not shooting ducks.
He’s not shooting caribou.
He’s fixing his gun.
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Do you see owl?
I don’t see it.
It’s not clear.
Because it is dark.
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Owl nearby.
Owl calling.
Listen to it.
Whoooo. Whoooo.
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It’s not a cat
It is power plant.
It’s the power plant I hear.
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Sleeping.
Cat is sleeping.
It is quiet.
It’s really quiet.
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What are you saying.
The cat is sleeping.
The light is on.
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