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The Essential 15

Hi There Blog Hoppin’ Friends,
It’s Hope King from Second Grade Shenanigans and I am thrilled to be one of the contributing authors here at Blog Hoppin’. This week, I am so excited about sharing how I work to build a classroom community with my students. Character education is such a BIG DEAL in my classroom and I am always looking for meaningful ways to really build a strong foundation of character in my students. So, here is one of my faves!
If you have ever stopped by to read my blog, you should know about my obsession with Ron Clark and the amazing principles that he has introduced with the Essential 55.  These principles are such wonderful lessons to really create a classroom atmosphere that thrives on the respect of others both inside and outside of the school. Each year, it is my hope that my students will not only become better little people during school hours but that the lessons that I teach and instill in them each day will follow them throughout their lives.  Last year was my very first year implementing several of Ron Clark’s Essentials after a visit to the Ron Clark Academy. Maybe it is just a coincidence BUT it was my BEST YEAR YET! My students were so compassionate and caring about one another and we became a tight knit classroom family all working towards finding success not only for ourselves but for one another. It was such a reward to watch my students function as such respectful members of our classroom, school and community. Yes…this year we are also becoming BUCKET FILLERS and I am so excited about implementing 15 of my favorite essentials right along with the fabulous bucket filling concept.  

In my classroom, I typically introduce one new essential each week. I make a big effort to positively reinforce my students when they are incorporating one of the essentials into their classroom behavior and attitude. I also allow my students to share about the ways that they are using these character building strategies outside of the classroom. I am telling you…their stories are truly amazing…even for seven and eight year olds. They will truly make your heart melt and put a smile on your face.  They have such a sense of pride when they know that they are working towards becoming the best people that they can be. If you too share in my love for “The Essentials”, you can click on the picture below to download my “Essential 15.” Enjoy and remember…DREAM BIG!

Don’t forget to keep on scrollin’ down to see some of the other amazing ideas that the other Blog Hoppin’ Authors have up their sleeves!  


  1. You are so lucky to have visited the Ron Clark Academy. I would love to go there and visit.


  2. I'm also doing the bucket fillers but ABSOLUTELY love this idea!! I really like the one about not expecting a reward.

  3. These are awesome!!


  4. I have never heard of this before, but I've already printed the ten essentials and can't wait to use it in my class! Plus I want to find this book and buy it. Thanks a ton!