Bigourdan middle school students in the digital age of Occitan

This Friday afternoon, December 2, Michaël BARRET, lexicographer at the Permanent Congress of the Occitan language (digital language academy) came to present to the bigourdan students of Juillan and Tarbes – as well as to their respective teachers – all the digital resources at their disposal to practice Gascon Occitan.

Whether in class, at home or – even better – to make a connection with their parents who are often at a loss when faced with a language that their children master better, they have discovered a whole series of tools at their disposal which they do not sometimes did not even suspect the existence:

Michaël Barret, credit Sylvain Carrère©

dictionary of Òconline and smartphone multidictionary []
verb’Òconline and smartphone conjugator []
OpenStreetMapthe free “Google Maps” in Occitan, []
special dictionaries : rhymes, synonyms, expressions,… []
automatic correctors for LibreOffice and for web browsers, []
– platform ” pedagogy » where several more fun language practice activities are grouped together… []

Let’s add to these “classic” tools the latest novelties which involved a titanic work and a trans-Pyrenees collaboration with the Basque foundation Elhuyar and even – who would have thought? – the use of neural network technologies – in a word, state-of-the-art artificial intelligence machines:
– Voice synthesis Votzwhich passes from the Occitan text to its []but especially the highly anticipated:
– The automatic translator Revirada []a veritable “Google Trad” of Occitan, also available on smartphones, which can even translate entire websites on the fly (feel free to copy and paste this web page into Revirada to test it!)

Finally, it was by actively participating that the students tested the future Congress project, ReVOcvoice recognition in Occitan [], which can therefore automatically transcribe audio into text, as for voice dictation. However, the pupils, who read several sentences and registered themselves thanks to their language and digital skills, thus contributed to enriching (even “bigourdanizing”!) this future tool which will make it possible in the more or less near future to be able to s speak directly to various devices (connected terminals, smartphones, “Alexa”, or even “Siri”…) by speaking in the Occitan language, just like any other language.

The 30 bilingual students of the elementary school of Juillan as well as the 60 Occitan middle school students of the Pyrénées college of Tarbes – who, themselves, were able to benefit from the recent endowment in tablets of the establishment and were able to “find out” these tools – have therefore enthusiastically practiced this digital environment in Occitan to better appropriate it and integrate it into their daily practice of a language that greatly needs it. The teacher of technology in Occitan Thierry Sarthe, at the origin of this intervention, valued this day very positively, like his colleagues of Occitan language Émilie Barrère and Zoé Roques, who thus see legitimized and reinforced their teaching practice.

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Bigourdan middle school students in the digital age of Occitan

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