Useful External Link for parents, teachers and other professional related to problems behavior

"Parents and teachers often have questions about the behaviour of children and adolescents. They may worry about whether a behaviour is appropriate for a particular age or developmental stage, or a sign that something might be wrong. They may wonder why it is occurring, and how best to respond.

The ABCs of Mental Health ( provides two free, web-based Resources - one for teachers and one for parents – to help answer these questions. The Resources include ideas for promoting the mental health of children and adolescents, information about how children change as they get older, descriptions of behaviours that might indicate a problem, and practical suggestions for steps to take".

Please we encourage you to visit this very useful link about the ABC of Mental Health


At the Office of Readaptation here in Waswanipi, we  are developing The Holistic Positive Thinking 2 Positive Behavior Interventions Handbook  which offer sound, research-based principles of positive behavior support to be uses in school, home and community settings with youth with challenges in behavioral adaptation. Regular features include empirical research; discussion, literature reviews, and conceptual papers; programs, practices, and innovations; forum; and media reviews.

This is a compilation of goals, objectives, and intervention strategies for more than 500 behaviors grouped by categories. It’s designed to respond to the most typical behavior problems exhibited by students in educational and community settings. The interventions are appropriate for any student engaging in the selected behaviors. The student or youth need not be identified as behaviorally disordered/emotionally disturbed or handicapped in anyway. The suitability of the interventions relates directly to the behavior problem and not to classification labels. The interventions selected reflect positive teacher, staff or positive parent behavior, contribute to a positive classroom, school or positive home atmosphere, and have been proven to contribute to student success in the educational and community environment. All interventions included have been found to be successful by administrators, teachers, parents, social workers, counselors, and other professional working with youth.

The interventions contained in this handbook represent solutions which are both holistically preventive and reactive. Preventive interventions are environmental adjustments or modification used to reduce variables (e.g., noise, disturbance, movement, association, another student, etc.) which may stimulate problem behavior. Reactive intervention “teaches” the student more appropriate ways to handle and deal with his/her behavior. These strategies include increased self-control, coping and problem solving skills, etc. Lifestyle Interventions may be included in this book. Usually, these interventions lead to a general improvement in the student's quality of life. Examples are helping the student have the opportunity to make friends, assisting him or her in accessing events or activities of interest, and giving more personal choice and power over age-appropriate life decisions.

Some interventions in this guidebook apply and relate to most students, youth and should be implemented first to provide a more general approach to problem reduction. Other interventions are more specific and should be individually selected for a student based on the appropriateness of the intervention for that student and the situation.

Professional judgment or instinct should guide the choice of interventions for any particular student or youth. The student’s age, gender, grade level, local community standards, and handicap, of one exists, are all to be considered in selecting appropriate intervention technique.


The success of the intervention hinges on 1.  Understanding why they student behaves in a certain way and 2. Replacing the inappropriate behavior with a more suitable behavior that serves the same function (or results in the same outcome) as the problem behavior.  Behavior continues to occur because it is being reinforced. Interventions should be implemented in a systematic format.


To determine the function of the behavior, a Functional Behavior Assessment is conducted.  The purpose is gather information in order to understand a student’s problem behavior.  It goes beyond the “symptom” to the underlying motivation the student is receiving from the problem behavior.  All behavior has a function and a trigger. 


For any behavior problem exhibited by students, it will be of value to assess the extent to which institutional variables influence the behavior and possibly contribute to the problem. Limited supervision in play areas, hallways, youth center and during extracurricular activities, as well as arbitrary groups and seating arrangements are examples of factors which are inherent in the educational setting and often contribute to problem behavior. As a first step in improving successful or inappropriate behavior, institutional variables should be evaluated and reduced. To appropriately respond to individual situations, all related variables in the educational setting which influence student behavior problems should be identified and considered when choosing appropriate interventions to facilitate a student’s success. In order not to overlook any historical or contemporary determinants of behavior, other variables to consider are vision, hearing, general health, nutrition, and family case history.

The most common functions of behavior are:

  1. Adult Attention- attention can be positive or negative and if the student is not receiving enough positive attention, then negative attention (i.e. reprimands, scolding) maybe better than no attention at all.  The student may be seeking attention form peers, adults, certain individuals, or all of the above.
  2. Escape or avoidance- The student may be escaping from something or to something.  For example, a student might act out knowing that he/she will be suspended from school and can then escape from school.  The student may be trying to escape a specific class or individual.
  3. Power or Control-The student may want to dominate, be in charge, control the environment, or make the decisions.  Each of us needs to be able to control aspects of out lives.  The student may come from a home environment that is very structures and he/she has no choices and feels powerless in his/her own life.  Or the student may be used to making all the decisions about his/her daily life because of lack of supervision or because he/she is in charge of younger siblings and is used to making the decisions.
  4. Peer Attention and Affiliation- The student may want to be part of group, be included in group activities, maybe just have a friend or two.  If the student is isolated or rejected, he/she may act out to try to impress peers or be the class clown to get at least some recognition from other students.  The target student may make threats, act tough, or act like a “wanna-be” to try to impress peers.
  5. Justice or Revenge-  The student wants to get back at an individual or group for a real or imagined slight.  The student may want to even the score on behalf of a friend or family member.  If the has a history of struggling in school, then he/she may view all teachers as unfair and may be misbehaving in retaliation for  past problems.  Sometimes the “revenge” isn’t personal-the student dislikes teachers or adults in general.


Less Common functions of behavior are:


  1. Access Tangible Rewards- the student is trying to get a tangible reward such as item, money or a privilege)
  2. Personal Gratification- the student is seeking to feel good or to get immediate feed back and a reward.

There are several things to remember when it comes to behaviors.  Remember when a student must unlearn an inappropriate behavior and learn an appropriate replacement behavior, it may take 6 to 10 times longer than if he/she only had to acquire the desired response.  By focusing on the acquisition of positive behaviors it is more likely to result in long term behavior change than reliance on external controls.  Instructional strategies include direct teaching of a skill, but also require opportunities for practice, reinforcement, and generalization to other settings.  In giving feedback and reinforcement to students, positive statements should outnumber negatives by a ratio of at least 4:1.


Consequences for behavior (both for appropriate behaviors and misbehaviors) should be tied to the function of the behavior.  When selecting consequences for a given target behavior, consider:

  • What function does the target behavior appear to serve for the student?

  • Does the student understand what behavior is expected and does he/she have the skills to display the expected behavior?

  • What behaviors will serve a similar function for the student-what will the student accept as a replacement behavior?

    Consequences should:

  • Maximize efforts to protect, preserve, and strengthen the relationship you have developed with the student; you don’t want to alienate the student or reinforce failure

  • Allow the student to practice the skill or strategy, and get feedback that will prevent future problem behavior.

  • Minimize student resistance-will the student buy in to the intervention

  • Be reasonable, predictable, consistent

  • Be natural and logical

  • Natural consequences-learning the hard way.There are some natural consequences that we cannot allow-a natural consequence of putting you hand on a hot stove burner.When we cannot allow the natural consequence, we may need to use a logical one.

  • Logical consequences-“punishment” fits the crime.For example, if a student misuses a toy, it is taken away; if the student betrays my trust, there will be a higher level of supervision until I can establish trust and responsibility with that student.

In this handbook, you find some strategies to assist education and community professional in developing interventions to address problematic behaviors.  The sections are divided into specific areas (i.e. active non-compliance).  The book provides strategies that might be useful in teaching the desired behavior(s), and materials that may be useful.  In addition, there is chart with specific strategies based on the function of the behavior.


We also added goals and objectives in this handbook to serve as examples which may be used in writing IEPs. Criteria for measuring the success of the student’s attainment of the goals and objectives must be determined by those professional educators and parents who are aware of the student’s current abilities and program recommendations.

Intervention may be chosen by a team of professionals, a special educator in an independent class or by a regular education teacher. The intervention has been found appropriate for special education, community educational setting as well as regular education classroom environment.

Usage of the same interventions in all settings by all teachers and instructional personnel working with the student facilitates the probability of student success in the educational and community environment. The interventions included in this guidebook are appropriate for all educational environments and lend themselves particularly well to creating continuity across all the educational settings in which the student or the youth functions.

You can contact Dr WakaWaka Hughes Pierre Ngatchou from the Waswanipi Office of Readaptation for questions or comments.



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Teaching starts from a heart full of love, compassion and joy!

Every teacher should have a joyful and loving heart every single day; kids can feel it and respond to it...


Don’t ask what your school can do for you, but what can you do for your school every day!

                                                                             Dr Wakawaka Hughes P.

Breakfast & Lunch program Sponsors

We would like to give a big and Warm thank you to former principal Ms Sophia Galanis, Marieline Kitchen and Louis Bernier for their unconditional support from the beginning of this program. Our thanks also go to The active and humble principal Josee Lalumiere, Vice Principal Michel Branchaud, pastor Allen Etapp, Michel Awashish, Marie Ortepi, teachers and members of the pentecostal church.

  • Maxi Chibougameau
  • Band Office (Mat. Blacksmith)
  • Michel Awashish from Church
  • Jack Otter (Suicide prevention coordinator)
  • Members of Church and volunteers (MaryAnn Ottereyes, etc.)
  • MSDC Team

In the name of God most High, we give thanks to our sponsor and our future sponsors.

If you want to sponsor or volunteer in our Youth Lunch program, please email Dr Waka Hughes at

God bless


The Office of Readaptation and the Waswanipi MSDC/Health board has sealed a great deal of providing extra help to students in need. This is the first deal ever done within the Cree Nation between School and Health Board/MSDC.

We are very thankful to Marie Ortepie, Winnie, Ghislain, Sophie and the whole team at MSDC for the unlimited support and love for our students.


Every Month, the Office of Readaptation and Special Ed hosts a school/community potluck at the school. The idea is to allow community’s members, parents, teachers and students to interact and to know each other better. The overall objective is to prevent and alleviate behavioral issue at our schools.

The first potluck hosted at our school was a great success with almost 600 people attending. We want to give a very warm and special appreciation to Vice Principal Emilie Deschenes for helping us making that potluck happen. Your great contribution to our school and to the Holistic Thinking for Positive Behavior is always treasured.

Saturday Lunch

Every Saturday, we host a free Lunch program at the Pentecostal church (basement) from 12 pm to 2pm.

All the kids are welcome. The menus vary from:

  • Moose Spaghetti
  • Hot dogs
  • fried rice with carrot and meat
  • Pizza
  • Potatoes and fries
  • drink
  • chicken and soup
  • etc.


Movie Night

We host a movie night every Friday at 7 pm with the youth at the Pentecostal Church.

Every kids are welcome. We also have a snack and drink during and after the movie.


Math and Spelling Tournament

We host a Math and Spelling Tournament every weeks at the Rainbow Elementary School.

We are also looking for sponsor to offer various prices to winners.

Thank you!

Start a Youth activities?

If you have an idea of a youth program that will  built our school, church and our community in Jesus, please feel free to contact Pastor Allen Etapp, or the School.

Donate to this program?

If the Creator, God has touched your heart to support the after school program, our lunch program at church or any other project we are involved, please feel free to contact  Pastor Allan Etapp or the school and arrangement could be made to receive your donation.

God bless your heart and your family.

JJK Cree contact

Address for activities: 17, Cedar St.

              Waswanipi, QC, J0Y3C0

Tel: 929-800-2946

School address:  Rainbow School
Waswanipi, Quebec
J0Y 3C0



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