Dakota Wicohan (wee-CHO-han) means the Dakota Way of Life

Today only 5 remaining first generation speakers within the four Dakota communities in Minnesota.
Dakota Wicohan partners with the communities to overcome this challenge by:

  • Building a strong language and lifeways program that transmits Dakota life ways

  • Growing and sustaining the base of cultural activists who lead this movement

  • Securing resources to support the vision

Friends Support Each Other in Language Learning at Dakota Wicohan Summer Camp!    See MPR photo essay


The essence of Dakota language recalls, instructs and heals
our inherent relationship with Creation,
which is essential to the continuation of indigenous communities. Dakota language, culture and history will strengthen Dakota identity, kinship and community well being.

Listen to Some of Minnesota's First Language Speakers 

Want to Learn More About Minnesota's First Language?

Knowing the story of our language is an important part of the Dakota language revitalization movement. Dakota Iapi Teunhindapi: We Cherish the Dakota Language is that story told in this 54-minute documentary based on interviews with Dakota elders and teachers. Companion curriculum and handbook are also available. Regardless of background, we encourage everyone to listen to this important story.

Strategies for Today

As a cultural incubator, Dakota Wicohan works to remember, reclaim, and reconnect with our language and lifeways.  Click on the links below for more info on each strategy:

Remember, or Kiksuya

Reclaim, or Kiyuwaste

Reconnect, or Kiciyuwaste