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The Ron Clark Academy

Hi friends!

I hope you are all having a wonderful year so far! I am loving my new school and my 5th graders! We have been doing so many wonderful things so far this year and I am hoping to be back to share them with you soon! Today though I am sharing all about the trip that has really set the tone for the year for me and inspired me more than any other conference or professional development opportunity I’ve been to… and that is my trip to the Ron Clark Academy!

In October I traveled to Atlanta, Georgia to the RCA 2-day teacher conference with some of the most聽phenomenal teachers I know! Not only was did I get to spend time with these wonderful teachers, but we also experienced the amazing, inspiring energy that RCA exudes every single day!

The following photos will give you a peek into our trip, but I have to preface that by saying that no matter how many pictures you look at, nothing beats actually going there in person to experience RCA first-hand!

Day 1: Thursday

We were greeted by smiling students who gave us聽name tags and welcomed us to their school. Once the gates opened we were led to the school library, where singing, dancing, and bungie jumping followed! The whole time students were introducing themselves and having conversations with聽us all about what we teach, where we are from, and our hobbies and interests. These students were the most articulate conversationalists!

Ron Clark is such a dynamic speaker! He is so fun to listen to because he has so much energy and excitement about his school and his students… He has created such an incredible聽environment and an amazing staff to help transform education for his students and for all the teachers who come visit RCA to learn from them and take those insights back to their own schools!
After a wonderful first day of classroom observations, workshops, and meeting the articulate RCA students we went out to dinner to catch up and share what we had learned from that day!
Day 2: Friday
At the end of the day on Thursday we all got to choose house shirts to wear to RCA on Friday! Reveur is the house of dreamers, so of course that’s the house I chose!
It was such a pleasure to meet Kim Bearden, the co-founder of RCA, and to listen to her talk and see her teach! I loved her book Crash Course: The Life Lessons my Students Taught Me, and she has so much passion and energy for what she does!
The entire school was built with the intention of being student-centered. Even the hallways were covered with framed photos of students!
The Essential 55 was the book that started it all. After reading this book several years ago, I eagerly bought the rest of Ron Clark’s books, and then eventually Kim Bearden’s. Like RCA, the books all exude a passion for teaching and a focus on student engagement.

I had such an incredible time at RCA and definitely left inspired and motivated! There are so many things that I have taken back to my classroom, including having students stand when they speak or answer a question, creating classroom transformations that bring the curriculum to life for students, and so much more! RCA is all about creating engaging, rigorous opportunities for students to learn and creating a positive culture in your classroom/school. If you have any desire to go, I highly recommend聽pursuing it! I聽would go back and visit again in a heartbeat!

  1. Betsy says:

    Wow, this conference sounds so amazing. I had never heard of Ron Clark until this week when his classroom YouTube that showed him dancing with his students went viral. After reading your post, I want to know more about him. I think I'll start by checking out his books. Thank you for sharing your experience!!! Betsy.
    Tweet @bucybetsy. Check out my blog http://inspiredinterventionist.blogspot.com

  2. Andrea Page says:

    I use the Essential 55, glad to know there are more books. Thanks for sharing your trip details- very motivating.

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