29 min.

After retiring from his job as a computer repair person in a big city, Zhngwaakoons moves to a small, quiet town where he buys a house. He’s enjoying the quiet and peacefulness of the sleepy little town in which he now lives. Quiet, that is, until four young students from the local elementary school begin making all kinds of noise each day on their walk to and from school – as they pass directly in front of Zhngwaakoons’s house! The clever Elder, though, comes up with a plan that just might outsmart the young boys into being more community-minded. In this video about the insights of our Elders, Barbara Nolan reminds us of our Nishnaabe teachings about indirectness.

By Barbara Nolan

Barbara Nolan is a first-speaker of Nishnaabemwin who has spent several decades working with a variety of organizations to revitalize the Nishnaabe language. Most recently, her dream of passing her language on has come true: Barbara has successfully passed her language on to John Paul Montano. This website,, is one part of their continuing efforts to help other Nishnaabe people acquire the language.