101 innovative and classroom-tested ways for improving America’s schools
and leading our children to greatness.
For PARENTS who want more from their children:
• TEACH YOUR CHILDREN HOW TO STUDY; don’t expect it to come naturally
• REALIZE THE POWER OF GRATITUDE AND APPRECIATION
For TEACHERS who need strategies for helping every student achieve
• LOVE WHAT YOUR STUDENTS LOVE, whether it’s iCarly, Twilight, or Monday
• KIDS NEED TO MOVE; bring education to life with kinesthetic learning
• GET A DRUM FOR THE CLASSROOM and use music to excite, motivate, and
For COMMUNITIES who hope to uplift every child and improve the
education of our next generation:
• PROVIDE EXAMPLES OF EXCELLENCE; we have to be our best individually,
but never forget that educating our children is a shared responsibility
• RECOGNIZE THAT THE HEART OF THE SCHOOL IS THE TEACHER; hire the best
and never settle
Practical, innovative, and powerful methods to enliven classrooms and
ignite a passion for learning in each and every child. It is time to
“GET ON THE DESK” and make every school in America the absolute best it
I often say I am a schoolteacher with the heart of a parent. I’ve made
it my mission to make a difference in the lives of all of our children.
I have traveled throughout our country, visiting schools in all 50
states, seeking out remarkable teachers who inspire our children to
Sadly, I have also witnessed classrooms that seemed sapped of all
energy, filled with students struggling to stay awake and teachers in
desperate need of inspiration. These “Molasses Classes” broke my heart.
I had to do something! I decided to leave my classroom in East Harlem,
New York, and devote my time to this audacious dream: to create a
revolution in our country, starting from the ground up. The heart of
this change would be a school, unlike any in the world. It would be full
of passion, creativity, energy, and an unparalleled freedom to do
whatever it took to lead every child to success. The parents and
teachers of this school would forge a true partnership with the intent
of providing the best learning environment possible.
I am proud to say that dream—the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, Georgia,
is now a reality. We welcome educators from all over the world to visit
and learn from our methods and techniques so that they may take them
back to their schools. I am still teaching, every day, and I feel
honored to have hosted more than 10,000 educators in my classroom.
This book is filled with the magic, the successes, the heartbreaks, the
mistakes, and the triumphs that are the Ron Clark Academy. These are the
101 most successful strategies we have used to help uplift our children
and enliven our classrooms. My hope is that you will find ideas here
that will help you ignite a passion for learning in your children—and
together we can get the molasses out of all our children’s classes.
Be different. Be bold. Join in.
- Ron Clark