Have you ever been to the Ron Clark Academy in Atlanta, GA?
It's been on my teacher bucket list for a while, and this past Spring I was finally able to go. I was lucky enough to be able to travel to RCA with not only 4 other coworkers, but also with my assistant principal. It was a dream come true, and I'm excited to share with you guys about it!
This is the view of RCA from across the street. It's actually very unassuming and gives just a little glimpse of the magic that is inside!! Hundreds of teachers waited with excitement for those big gates to swing open so we could walk inside!
Once inside, we were greeted with music, singing, and dancing….by not only the kids, but also by the teachers and staff of RCA. Naturally we joined right in. It was a wonderful start to our day! One thing that I was struck by immediately, was how HAPPY the students seemed. Not just one or two…but every single one of them seemed to be smiling and genuinely happy to be at school. Now that's definitely not something you see every day!!
We were able to visit several classrooms in session during the day. In each classroom, we were both quiet observers AND active participants. It was amazing to watch as the teachers brought learning to life for the students through dancing, singing, drumming, acting, etc. I watched with amazement as these middle school students hung on every word their teachers said, and how involved they seemed to be with each lesson.
At the Ron Clark Academy learning is fun, active, and meaningful. The teachers seem to have a spark that is missing in many classrooms across America today. And the students seem to have a true love for learning that seems to be contagious. My coworkers and I left RCA with a desire to make our classrooms more engaging and fun….but also to make them more rigorous and academically meaningful.
Here are some pictures from the interior of the school. Modeled after scenes from Harry Potter, the inside is absolutely breathtaking. These pictures probably do not do it justice!!
If you ever get the chance to go to RCA, I highly recommend it! Until then there are lots of great videos out there to give you a taste of what the Ron Clark Academy is all about!