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Posted October 7, 2003 

THE ESSENTIAL 55
An Award-Winning Educatorís Rules for Discovering the Successful Student in Every Child.
By: Ron Clark
NY:Hyperion:2003

Reviewed by: Lon Woodbury

A teacher who has been teaching since 1995 wrote this cute little book. Much of his experience has been with difficult to work with primary students. Out of his personal experience, he began to develop a list of rules that are basic enough that children can make sense of them. These are the rules that have helped him take apathetic students and get them on the road to success. At root, by working from this list of rules, the author shows that with determination, consistency, discipline and regular rewards, a teacher can get through to the most difficult student. The result is the 55 ideas of specific behavior contained in this book.

Ranging from dinner table etiquette, to respect for adults and other students, to hints about everyday behavior, this list of 55 rules distills basic ideas of character, self-discipline, and responsibility down into specific actions each student can do every day. Essentially, the author is talking about the nuts and bolts of Emotional Growth programs, and might hold some good ideas for teachers in those schools, and parents in trying to discipline their own children.

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