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Connolly Serves TD3 Native Population through Navajo Language Classes

Post Date:02/09/2017 2:12 PM

CMSLanguageClass_400x244Connolly Middle School continued their effort to embrace and strengthen Native American heritage by hosting a Navajo language class at the school.

Tempe Elementary’s Native American Program Coordinator Ronald Stiffarm decided to move the classes from the Phoenix Indian Center to Connolly due to the high Diné (Navajo) population at the school.

“The goal of the class is to grow the Navajo language and share with others, especially younger people, to keep the interest alive,” said Stiffarm.

The class meets every Tuesday from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. through May 2, 2017. This class is open to all ages as an introduction to simple conversation using basic sight words, the date, clan activities, and seasonal stories. Students and families engage in interactive activities to enhance conversational skills.

Stiffarm encourages anyone interested in learning the Navajo language to join the class. You can register at any time. Classes are free to Diné people on a first-come first-served basis. Non Navajos will be allowed to register for a class upon availability with a fee of $150.

CMSLanguageClass2_400x400“If students and parents learn and retain information, they are more likely to share and use it,” said Stiffarm. “I know this will happen with our class because the interest is high and everyone comes prepared to learn.”

Connolly also sponsors the Phoenix Indian Center’s Project Infinity “Living in Two Worlds” program, which aims to support the well-being of Native American youth in their home and school environments.

“I think it’s important to know that we have a very strong Native community and Native American Program Department at TD3,” said Stiffarm. “We are doing our part to keep cultural awareness and support to our communities meaningful and open to all.”

If you are interested in attending Connolly’s Navajo Language Class, or for more information, please contact Jolyana Begay-Kroupa from the Phoenix Indian Center at (602) 264-6768 ext. 2210 or email at

View the class registration flyer here.

Photos retrieved from Phoenix Indian Center's website.

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