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Lesson 11 -
Work and Home Questions


Gidanokii na? - Are you working?
Gidanokii na mego? - Are you working right now?
Nindanokii - I'm working
Nisaye anokii - My older brother is working.
Anokii - S/he is working.
Noongom anokii nimbaabaa - My father is working
Nisayeyag anokiiwag - My older brothers are working.
Anokiiwag - They are working.
Gigii-anokii na bijiinaago? - Did you work yesterday?
Gaawiin ningii-anokiisii - I didn't work.
Gii-anokii na gibaabaa? - Did you father work?
Gaawiin gii-anokiisii - S/He didn't work.
Gisayeyag na gii-anokiiwag bijiinaago? - Did you older brothers work yesterday?
Gaawiin gii-anokiisiiwag - They didn't work.
Giwii-ando-anokii na waabang? - Are you going to work tomorrow?
Gigii-ando-anokii na bijiinaago? - Did you go ti work yesterday?
Gaawiin niwii-ando-anokiisii noongom - I'm not going to work today.
Giga-ayab na waabang? - Will you be home tomorrow?
Gigii-ayab na bijiinaago? - Were you home yesterday?
Gimaamaa na gii-ayabi bijiinago? - Was your mother home yesterday?
Da-ayabi na waabang? - Will she be home tomorrow?
Mary na ayabi mego? - Is Mary home right now?
Ayabi - S/He is at home.
Nindayab - I am at home.
Gidayab - You are at home.
Gidani-giiwe na? - Are you going home?
Nindani-giiwe - I am going home.
Giwii-giiwe na? - Are you going to go home?
Giwii-giiwe na waabang? - Are you going to go home tomorrow?
Niwii-giiwe - I am going to go home.
Niwii-giiwe zhemaag - I am going to go home immediately.
Wii-giiwe awe ikwe - This woman is going to go home.
Wii-ani-giiwe - S/He is going to go home.
Aazha ani-giiwe - S/He is already going home.
Gii-ani-giiwe na? - Did s/he go home?
Aazha gii-ani-giiwe - S/he already went home.
Ningii-giiwe bijiinaago - I went home yesterday.
Niwii-giiwe waabang - I am going to go home tomorrow.
Gibi-giiwe na? - Are you coming home?
Gii-bi-giiwe na? - Did s/he come home?
Ayabi na aazha? - Is s/he home already?
Joe bi-giiwe - Joe is coming home.

New Words:

anokii - he works
ayabi - he is at home
gimaamaa - your mother
ani-, or ni- - there, in direction away from the speaker
bi- - here, towards the speaker


  • In English things or persons, which/who perform an action (they are called 'subjects') usually come before a verb: 'I go', 'you are working', 'he is at home'.
    In Ojibwe you may say first whichever you think of first, or whichever you feel contains the most important or novel information:

    nisaye anokii - my older brother is working.
    anokii nisaye - my older brother is working.

  • Personal prefixes are placed before past and future prefixes:

    ningii-anokii bijiinaago - i worked yesterday.
    niwii-ayab waabang - i will be at home tomorrow.

  • Preverbs ani- and bi- show direction of a movement, away from a speaker (ani-), or towards a speaker (bi-), e.g.:

    ningii-ani-giiwe - i went home (there)
    ningii-bi-giiwe - i came home (here).

    Adding of bi- creates 'coming (here)' verbs from 'going (there)' verbs.
    Preverbs are always added directly to a verb, and different prefixes always stand before them.

    Check the differnce between:

    Gibi-giiwe na? - are you coming home? (gi- is a personal prefix for 'you')
    Gii-bi-giiwe na? - did s/he come home? (gii- is a past tense prefix, 'did')

  • Demonstrative pronouns could be placed before nouns in Ojibwe. The meaning is the same as in English:

    awe ikwe - that woman


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