Four Arrows (Wahinkpe Topa) -Don Trent Jacobs is currently a faculty member with Fielding Graduate University, ranked in 2004 as the number one doctoral granting university for American Indians. From 2001 to 2007, he was a tenured Associate Professor at NAU.* From 1998-2001 he served as Dean of the Education Department at Oglala Lakota College. (OLC is a fully accredited 4-year tribal college on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota. ) He holds a Ph.D. in health psychology (CPU) and an Ed.D. in curriculum and instruction (BSU).


*In addition to nearly 100 articles in magazines and peer-reviewed journals, he is the author of eighteen books and fourteen invited chapters about such diverse topics as Indigenous worldview; social and ecological justice; wellness; psycholinguistics; critical theory; teaching and learning; and neurophilosophy. In 2010, his first novel, Last Song of the Whale, will be published. This exciting and suspenseful adventure revolves around the Great Eastern Garbage Patch in the North Pacific Gyre.



Don and Jessica




















Four Arrows is listed in "Native American Authors" by IPL; has been a Marine Corp officer, a world-class horseman, a firefighter/EMT, a professional piano player, a sports psychologist/ hypnotherapist, a sailor and an activist. In 2004, the Martin Springer Institute for Holocaust Studies at NAU, awarded him their Moral Courage Award for his activism. View his CV . Four Arrows is of Cherokee/Creek/Scots-Irish ancestry and is a Oglala SunDancer, having fulfilled his 4-year vow with Rick Two Dog's Medicine Horse community on Pine Ridge.

An engaging public speaker and keynoter, Four Arrows continues to offer stimulating presentations to professional audiences throughout the world. (For a video of his latest presentation on education and Indigenous worldview, go to "Workshops and Presentations." ) Read article in Fielding Focus about Four Arrows


Four Arrows, Don Trent Jacobs is awarded the prestigious Martin-Springer Moral Courage Award 2004

Four Arrows accepting award

In order to encourage individuals to live what we teach, we intend to begin an award program in which we annually recognize a teacher, a student, and a community member. The selected individuals will embody the goals and values of the Martin-Springer Institute.Read Four Arrows acceptance speech


Four Arrows and Jessica Jacobs : Jessica Jacobs is a teacher, and mother . She has her Masters degree in Mathematics Education. She has participated in a variety of equestrian, kayaking, diving and sailing adventures. Her sons continue the love of adventure and entertainment legacy.

Other Contributing Authors for Teaching Virtues text

Richard JonesRichard M. Jones has lived on or around the Pine Ridge Reservation for the past 20 years. His first experience with Native Americans came with his involvement at Wounded Knee in 1973. He returned 8 years later to teach middle school at Pine Ridge. He has taught in Upward Bound, in rural Tennessee, the Navajo Nation and here in South Dakota. Job positions have included teacher, psychological examiner, exceptional education teacher, exceptional education director, curriculum specialist and assistant superintendent and, presently, college instructor. Richard is actively involved in whole school reform efforts and the inherent democracy implied in school reform and views the present political climate as chilling to the precepts of democracy.

see some thoughts from Richard about implementation challenges


Edwin Dawson


Edwin J. Dawson is on faculty at the University of Arizona in Tuscon in the communications department. He is also a communication consultant for organizations and political candidates. His research interests include educational assessment methodologies, health promotion and disease prevention campaigns, and the use of multimedia educational technologies in asynchronous learning environments. He co-authored Human Communication and a number of published scholarly chapters and articles. Dr.Dawson is also a faculty member at the National Judicial College in Reno, Nevada. He received his Ph.D., in communication from the University of Arizona and his M.A. from the University of Nebraska. He is currently an Assistant Professor of communications at the University of Arizona, Tuscon.

From Richard Jones:

In the chapter "Not to be Remiss" I discuss some of the difficulties one might encounter if they choose to initiate a program of character education. Standardized testing is the knife in the back of school reform and with its emphasis on facts is a serious deterrent to character education. Colleagues, regretfully may also pose problems as it ist i a diversion from the status quo to discuss issues like honesty and integrity. Administrators are generally an obvious conflict of interest. The students themselves will resist character education and often the "hidden curriculum" actively undermines character education. Finally there is the school board. It is interesting to me that they escape culpability in all of this accountability craze. Schools can be only as good as school boards allow them to be.

If you have comments, positive or negative, let's talk. Write to me at Richard M. Jones, Oglala Lakota College PO Box 490 Kyle, SD 57772 or email me af you are so inclined.


Four Arrows using his Olympic class mustang to teach American Indian children how to ride "telepathically" in the old ways.


Today, children from the STAR school, the solar powered school on Leupp Road near Flagstaff that emphasizes place-based learning and hands on experience, learned how to ride a previously wild BLM horse using "the old ways" of their indigenous ancestors who used to "talk to the animals.". Brioso, a large mustang that was a member of the 1996 Olympic 100 mile endurance team, has taught hundreds of children how to speak to him in ways that demand concentration, overcoming fear, and a subtle, telepathic form of communication. Under the supervision of NAU education professor, Four Arrows, a Creek/Cherokee and Irish man who campaigned Brioso to a position as first alternate for the U.S. gold medal team in 1996, each child learned to ride the horse and turn him without a headstall! STAR school (Service to All Relations) is a K-8 school serving children on and around the Navajo reservation near Leupp, Arizona.

Four Arrows lives near the village of Punta Chueca, home of the Comcaacc (Seri) Indians. These wonderful people have become friends and share their ancient culture, art and music with us. As seafarers, they traveled in long reed or balsa boat to the islands throughout the central Gulf and to Baja.The Seri are stewards to a unique and diverse array of marine and coastal biodiversity within their homeland -- the richest area of endemic species in North America.Seri Indians are actively engaged in protecting their homelands and waters. They are leading conservation, culture and sustainable development projects to protect their livelihoods and the rich biodiversity of their region.

To learn more about them..................