Cherokee has been spoken in the southern Appalachians for thousands of years. Today fewer than 300 fluent speakers remain in the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians, all over the age of 50. It is an endangered language.

Your Grandmother’s Cherokee is a simple and easy way to make all the Cherokee words you need to speak fluently. Use “Make a Word” to make one Cherokee word (equal to an English sentence). Use the dictionary to find words in English, Cherokee, and Cherokee syllabary — words in forms that you can immediately use in conversation.

About Flying Lizard Languages

Flying Lizard Languages is committed to preserving indigenous languages.

The Legend of the Flying Lizard

Today we have laws that say how things work, and what is possible. A long time ago, things were different.

But one day there was a lizard. He saw some food and he reached for it—but it flew away. He saw it, and jumped for it, but it flew away. He saw it, and reached for it again, but it flew away. Again he saw it, and tried to get it, but it flew away.

Then the lizard said, Maybe if I do something different, maybe if my arms get longer and my scales stretch out, maybe I can catch this food, maybe I can fly.

Now the lizard didn’t know anything about aerodynamics or the principles of flight. He didn’t know about lift, how the wind goes over and under the airfoil and creates lift. He didn’t know about the laws of physics. He just wanted to fly.

And he leaped out, and he stretched out, and he flew. But he got there because he wanted to. He didn’t know how.

It was like the lizard who wanted to fly-- and he could. And that’s how we were— we wanted it: to understand the language to speak the language and now we can.

It’s like the lizard who wanted to fly. People said it was impossible, But he flew.

-John Standingdeer