The best teacher in this book has to be Mr. P, as it is he who gives Junior enough courage and wisdom in order to make the decision to leave the reservation and go to Reardan and to nurture the hope that he still has. After Junior breaks his nose out of anger, he has a very sincere and frank chat with Junior that teaches him the reality of what it means to be an Indian on the reservation, and helps him to understand why he has to leave, as the following quote explores:
You kept your hope. And now, you have to take your hope and go somewhere where other people have hope.
Mr. P is the best teacher because he is so honest and vulnerable with Junior about his own failure and the failure of the Indian people as a whole, who, according to him, have "given up." Rather than sit back and watch Junior do the same, he determines to encourage Junior to be different and to make a future for himself and to not lose the hope that so many other Indians have lost.