The African Studies Center (ASC) is excited to introduce Hanifat Adeleke. She joins the University of Michigan this year as the 2022-2023 Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA). We are honored to bring on Adeleke, as she is fitted to the FLTA program’s mission to stress the importance of culture when learning more about a language. Adeleke told the ASC that she plans on incorporating important cultural norms from her home country of Nigeria and creating a more holistic understanding of Yoruba for her students.
A large contribution to the culture comes from the differences in greetings, understanding of the hierarchies of respect, and encouraging communal participation; much of which is different in the United States, says Aderonke.
As a Yorùbá language teacher, she loves to take them through the learning tone marks and orthography of the language. Teaching major aspects of the Yoruba cultural heritage is also very interesting to her. Adeleke provides a common example of people co-existing in a family house to raise and nurture children by teaching them the language informally and the cultural values across generations.
Adeleke has gained many years of language teaching experience as a Government secondary school teacher in Nigeria. Her responsibilities were to teach and evaluate 10th-grade students in English language studies. When asked about how she has found learning occurs most effectively, she reflected on her experience and identified that the class must be learner-centered. She described this situation as analyzing a presented scenario through the teacher’s guidance with the use of real objects such as Yorùbá artifacts and audio-visual methods like video presentation.
Adeleke has a strong desire to keep her mother tongue of Yorübá alive and to expand its learners across the world, which is what prompted her to apply to the FLTA program. She is glad to be on campus and teach and share Yorùbá with U-M students and the larger community. A final fun fact that she wanted to share with our ASC community is that teaching actually runs in her family. Both her parents were retired teachers!