SDÁ 2-2008: Solveig Joks

Boazodoallu – eallinvuogi máhtut

Solveig Joks (Sámi allaskuvla)

Viečča artihkkala dás (pdf).

Reindeer husbandry – knowledge from a livelihood

The article deals with the transmission of knowledge to children within
reindeer husbandry. Reindeer husbandry, in addition to being an industry, is
also a livelihood that influences the way children are learning traditionally.
This traditional way of learning differs from the regular education system.
In reindeer husbandry the context is important in the learning situation. By
way of comparison, the teachings of subjects in the school setting are often
far from the places to which they belong.

Therefore, places where the family herd is at that moment is important. Children have to learn to distinguish between different kinds of reindeer and learn to travel in the landscape in different weather and travelling conditions. All this knowledge is connected to the places. Before children gain enough competence to travel alone, they have to learn to observe significant phenomena in the landscape. Their observations help them to take the right decision in every situation. Many places also have stories that children are told. Stories make places alive especially when the child knows the people who are the main characters in the stories.