Relationships with Staff & 'Authority'

"The people's clothing are made with traditional patterns but modern materials. It shows adaptability while holding true to tradition." - Visual Story by Alexander Angnaluak

by TakingITGlobal


  • Bullying (in-person and social media) without skills for bystander intervention
  • Peer pressure and belonging linked to substance abuse (alcohol, drugs)
  • Limited freedom of expression and conflict avoidance


  • Supportive communications that help students see choices and links to consequences of actions and decisions
  • Opportunities for students to see strengths, gifts and feel successful
  • Longer-term relationship with students to support their growth
  • Staff in place for the love of the job who take decolonizing approaches

Examples of Connected North Sessions

  • Focus on Teacher PD related to understanding trauma-informed approaches to teaching and learning
  • Process of decolonization with sessions of and about natural law
  • Supporting recruitment efforts to attract teachers that have the skills, heart and mindset needed for the job

What does the research tell us?

"Are you confident you can design a curriculum which will equip me to live in my world?... I am five years old and I am sitting in one of your classrooms today" (Beare, 2002, "I Am the Future's Child," no para.).

The idea of teachers and students as curriculum makers fits well with the philosophies of both 21st century education and Indigenous ways of knowing. 21st century education is often connected with a focus on creativity and collaboration (Jacobs, 2010). When teachers bring subject matter to life through collaborative meaning making in read alouds, conversations and other activities, the classroom is a place of creativity. Shared knowledge making, such as is developed in conversations like the one in this Grade 2 class, promotes a collaborative approach to learning. (Decolonizing Aboriginal Education in the 21st Century, Elizabeth Ann Munroe, Lisa Lunney Borden & Anne Murry Orr, St.FX University, McGill Journal of Education, Vol 48 N.2, Spring 2013)

What can we do?


Develop programming that can be facilitated with teachers and that requires follow up instruction by a teacher/adult.


Deliver programming focusing on leadership themes and styles of leadership, respect, communication, trust, etc.


Deliver programming that encourages students to explore healthy and productive ways of sharing their ideas, thoughts and feelings with others.


Deliver programming that requires students to be responsible to others (completing part of a project, showing up, etc.)


Deliver professional development programming for teachers to help them succeed in the classroom and improve their own skills of classroom and student management, teaching Indigenous youth, etc.

Explore the Well-Being Framework Elements

Culture, Language & Identity

Relationships with Peers / Students

Arts & Recreation

Hope for the Future

Food & Nutrition

Relationships with Staff & 'Authority'

Parent & Family Involvement


The conceptual framework, insights and content reflected here has been developed collaboratively by members of the Connected North team at TakingITGlobal inspired by the communities we partner with.

Special thanks to Alexander Angnaluak, Doronn Fox, Nyle Johnston, Nigit'stil Norbert, Dallas Pelly, Waukomaun Pawis, Magdalena Kelly, Chris McLeod, Jason Jones, Mitch Holmes, Shelton Nipisar, Kim Dymond, Andrea Breen, Michael Furdyk, Edgar Gonzalez, Peyton Straker, and Jennifer Corriero.

We gratefully acknowledge youth, educators, elders and leaders from Connected North partner communities who have graciously shared their experiences, hopes, challenges and feedback with our team. In particular, we appreciate active inputs towards this framework from the Yukon, Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Saskatchewan and Ontario.

We would also like to thank Vani Jain and the team at the McConnell Family Foundation for their support as thought partners.

© 2022 TakingITGlobal and Alexander Angnaluak. All rights reserved. Contact for inquiries.