Teaching Modules: Caseidyneën Saën – Learning Together

Do you want to learn more about Zapotec language and history? Are you looking for resources to incorporate Indigenous knowledge into your classroom? Caseidyneën Saën is a book of lessons that explore these topics using the Colonial Zapotec documents available on Ticha.


There are English language and Spanish language versions of Caseidyneën Saën. Some lessons are written with a high school classroom in mind and others are aimed at a university audience — but all of the chapters are designed to be accessible. They may be used for independent study or as part of a class or discussion group.

As classrooms around the world are engaged in virtual teaching and learning and the United Nations recognizes the coming decade (2022-2032) as the International Decade of Indigenous Languages, we find ourselves at a pivotal moment for Indigenous languages and Indigenous communities. This is a time for critical reflection and action regarding the continued colonial dynamics in higher education. Featuring chapters by both Zapotec and non-Native team members, Caseidyneën Saën is free-to-access thanks to funding from a 2019 American Council for Learned Societies (ACLS) Digital Extension Grant. As academics, activists, and students, we at Ticha view the accessibility of our resources and the incorporation of the wider Zapotec community as critical parts of our mission.


The first three chapters of Caseidyneën Saën  are available now; we will release new chapters (12 in total) through Fall 2021. As all of the chapters are under active development, we welcome feedback at tichaproject@gmail.com or through the Ticha comments page.

Please share these resources widely, and contact us with your ideas about where Caseidyneën Saën could be of use! If you want to receive updates as we release new materials, you can follow the Ticha Project on Twitter (@TichaProject) and Facebook.

Available Lessons

Lesson Title Summaries Level Disciplines Digital Book English pdf Spanish pdf
Ticha A guided tour of the Ticha website. Students will learn about the Colonial Zapotec documents and other available resources. High School n/a Open Link Download English PDF Download Spanish PDF
Numbers An introduction to the number system in Colonial Valley Zapotec. High School n/a Open Link Download English PDF Download Spanish PDF
Language Shift Examines language shift from Zapotec to Spanish and considers some of the factors influencing this shift. College n/a Open Link Download English PDF Download Spanish PDF

Future Lessons:

  • Documentos Históricos Zapotecos
  • Considerations in writing and reading Zapotec languages
  • Using social media to learn and share about Zapotec
  • Reading early religious texts in Colonial Valley Zapotec
  • Reading a linguistic analysis of a Colonial Valley Zapotec text
  • Borrowing
  • Colonial Valley Zapotec verbs
  • Using Colonial Zapotec documentation in language reclamation work