Kelly returns for her second year at The Cooper School in Second Grade. Kelly was raised in the greater Chicago area. On her first visit to Charleston, she fell in love with the city and decided to attend The College of Charleston. Kelly received her Bachelor or Science in Elementary Education from The College of Charleston. She also has a Masters in Education from The Citadel. Kelly is a Nationally Board Certified Educator. During her free time, Kelly enjoys playing board games and taking long walks with her husband and three young children.

Read Kelly’s Testimonial.

Flying High! May 26, 2017



This week scholars are putting the finishing touches on their Bird Study Presentation. With all the excitement, it’s easy to forget one important piece to the project model, reflecting on what was learned. When reflection occurs, it ensures the experience is no longer isolated. It encourages insight and enhances the experience allowing for long-term connections to be made. Second Graders reflected independently on their most favorite part, least favorite part, and biggest challenges. By understanding that reflection is enhanced when shared with others, students discussed their achievements as a class.


Birds of Prey


Second Graders visited the Center of Birds of Prey Thursday and experienced the amazing world of raptors. Students gained some last minute insight into the life of different types of birds of prey. As they toured the center they got to meet sleepy Barred Owls, fast flying Peregrine Falcons, and hungry Turkey Vultures. It was so interesting to learn even more about these unique creatures and even more amazing to see these birds in action during the live bird show. It was a perfect way to culminate the bird study.


Bird Study Presentations


Tuesday morning, brave scholars displayed confidence as they shared their Bird Study Presentations to a room packed with friends and family. Children proudly discussed their bird’s habitat, unique characteristics, and adaptations. After the formal presentations were completed, students showed off their realistic bird drawings, dioramas, woven feathers, bird masks, bird’s wingspan versus their own arm span and their bird sculpture. It was quite a sight to see and a fantastic way to wrap-up our bird study unit.


Important Dates:


May 29th                                 No School – Memorial Day

June 1st                                  ½ Day – 5th Grade Graduation

June 2nd                                 ½ Day – Field Day

Priceless Learning in Second Grade May 12, 2017



Students began Everyday Math Unit 10 this week. In this unit children review money concepts, such as names of coins and bills, money exchanges, and equivalent amounts. They pretend to pay for items and make change. Students use calculators to add and subtract dollar amounts using decimal notations. Some of these real-world problems really made these scholars think twice and check their initial answers. Nonetheless, students felt a sense of accomplishment as they worked through these problems independently and with partners.




Second Grade avian experts put the finishing touches on their PowerPoints this week. They began the week by editing their writing for grammar, spelling, and punctuation errors. Once all their information and pictures were in the right place, scholars turned their attention to adding effects such as color and animation to their slides. We discussed enhancement through subtlety by selecting a few important details that could be emphasized.


Pass It On Fundraiser

Cooper School kids invited a representative from the Charleston Animal Society to campus this week to present a check for the proceeds from sales of Pass-It-On. Students were pleasantly surprised to find that she brought her very own rescue dog with her! After hearing even more about what the Animal Society does for local pets and where the money would go, teachers and students were thrilled to present a check for $490.00! That money can go a long way to help animals that need some extra TLC.


Important Dates


May 25th                       Birds of Prey Study Trip

May 26th                       Bird Study Presentation at 8:15

May 29th                       No School – Memorial Day

June 1st                        ½ Day – 5th Grade Graduation

June 2nd                       ½ Day – Field Day


Poetry and Grandparents May 8, 2017

Bird Study


Second Graders were super excited to begin working on their Power Point Presentation this week! Students have already researched their information, written about their bird, and drawn their own pictures. Each student was assigned their own mini iPad that they will use to create their presentation. This week, students began typing up their research in Power Point by copying and pasting. These techno savvy students are even learning how to edit their own mistakes by using “spelling and grammar” check. Only a few more weeks until they present their final project of their Second Grade year.

Pass It On


Second Grade Scholars focused on preparing for our annual poetry reading, Pass It On.
These experts shared what could be expected and some tips to help each other be successful when reading their poems. Bold poets gave tips for reading loud, speaking confidently, and articulating each stanza clearly by pausing at line breaks. Second Graders are getting very excited about sharing their great work!


Grandparents Day


It was another successful Grandparent’s and Special Friends Day at TCS. To begin the morning, students welcomed grandparents into the classroom. Students shared a typical Morning Meeting with a fun greeting, activity, and morning message. Next students shared their favorite math game, Name That Number. Students also shared their favorite “Grandparent Parents and Special Friends Day” book by reading with their special guest. The day concluded with a trip to the book fair and a spectacular choir performance. What a delightful way to spend the day!


Friday, May 5th                                Pass-It-On at 5:30


Sunday, May 7th                             Family Picnic Magnolia Plantation


Friday, May 26th                             Birdy Study Presentation at 8:15


Monday, May 29th                           No School – Memorial Day

Birds Are Everywhere!! April 28, 2017

Bird Study


Students were thrilled to begin researching their birds this week. Each Second Grader is able to use their Mini IPad and books to look up specific information about their bird. This week, bird enthusiasts researched information about their bird’s beak, feet, and bodies. Once they read their information, students wrote one to two paragraphs about their topic in their own words. All of this will be combined into a PowerPoint that they will create on a Mini IPad. They will present all the knowledge they have gained in a Bird Museum at the end of May.




This week, Second Graders applied the strategies they have learned in math to measuring the wingspan of their bird. Each student researched their wingspan in inches using the information they have acquired. Some scholars even converted centimeters to inches or feet to inches. Students used a yardstick to measure the length by marking a starting point and ending point with tape. They were challenged to estimate the number of pieces of paper they would need to construct their bird’s wingspan. Each piece of paper was 17 inches. Therefore, a student studying the Osprey with a wingspan of 71 inches would need at least five pieces of paper!




Second Graders began discussing leadership skills this week. In Morning Meeting, they listed the qualities of a leader. Students generated words such as confident, calm, outspoken, and respectful. Then, they brainstormed a list of people who are leaders in their life. The list was both heartwarming and interesting. Students identified peers, siblings, teachers, parents, and even former presidents. Each student shared the traits and actions that defined their leader.


Important Dates:

Friday, May 5th                                 Grandparent’s Day (1/2 of School)

Friday, May 5th                                 Pass-It-On

Sunday, May 7th                              Family Picnic at Magnolia Plantation from 3:30-5:00

Friday, May 26th                             Bird Study Presentation at 8:15

Measuring and More April 21, 2017



This week Second Graders have been measuring in math. They have learned to measure precisely using tools such as a ruler, yardstick, and tape measure. Students measured long and short distances with both the Customary Units of Measurement and the Metric System. They measured the lengths of different objects around the playground such as the balance beam, garden boxes, picnic tables, and swing set. They learned that converting lengths using the Metric Base 10 units are much easier than converting the Customary Units of Length.  


Bird Study


Second Graders learned about the different adaptations of various types of birds. Students partner read and shared their thoughts. They wrote about bird adaptations and used different tools to represent several types of bird’s beaks. The students received a small bag filled with different types of food. Students explored which beak would be best suited for each type of food. They recorded their information in a table and shared their results. Later in the week, ornithologists were put into one of three bird categories; birds of prey, water birds, or songbirds. Bird lovers chose a particular bird from their category they were interested in researching. Bird choices included everything from fast flying hummingbirds to graceful egrets and nocturnal owls.




Second Graders continued practicing their soccer skills this week in movement. They reviewed skills such as passing and trapping while remembering to use the inside of their foot to control the ball. This week, soccer enthusiasts set up cones and blocks. They weaved the ball around the obstacle course and worked on building stamina. They focused on dribbling the ball down the field with attention to keeping the ball close so that it couldn’t be stolen from a defender. The last ten minutes of movement were dedicated to playing a challeneging small 4 vs. 4game. Before any player could score, three other teammates had to touch the ball by receiving a pass.


Important Dates:


Thursday, April 27th                        JICP Wall Climbing

Tuesday, May 2nd                             Parent Coffee 8 am – 9 am

Friday, May 5th                                 Grandparent’s Day (1/2 of School)

Friday, May 5th                                 Pass-It-On

Birds of a Feather… April 7, 2017

Charleston Settlers Field Trip

In conclusion of the Charleston Settlers unit, Second Graders visited two historic houses on Tuesday. Both the Nathaniel Russell House and the Aiken-Rhett House were built in the early 1800’s. Now owned and preserved through the Historic Charleston Foundation, they serve as a reminder of what life was like during that time period. Students learned Nathaniel Russell was a merchant involved in daily trade operations. He relied on the Charleston port to export cash crops and import slaves. After touring the house, Second Grade settlers stepped into the life and playground of a child during this time period. First, students paired up to play Toss and Catch with sticks and small rings. Next, they strengthened their hand-eye coordination by playing Bilabo. This individual game challenges it user to catch a ball on a stick in a wooden cup. Last, students built stamina by running up and down the yard pushing a large wooden hoop with a stick.  

Bird Study

Second Grade bird enthusiasts have begun studying birds this week. These curious scholars are reading, writing, and learning about the characteristics that make a bird unique. Everything from feathers to hollow bones, students identified all the features that birds have in common. To assess their understanding of physical attributes, students read an article about penguins. Since penguins don’t fly or have hollow bones like typical birds, scholars were challenged to write an argument persuading me that penguins were birds. After reading all of the persuasive arguments, I am 100% convinced penguins are indeed birds!


Several weeks of vocabulary comes from the Bird Study. There are so many practical bird words that are used to describe how our feathered friends move and function. Students are beginning to learn these words can also be applied in other contexts as well. Words such as soar or swoop pertain to birds, but they also can be used to describe other things. Students will be using these words across several contexts.


Important Dates:


April 10th – April 17th            Spring Break

April 20th                               Silent Auction 5:30 – 8:30

                                                 Buy your tickets today!

Soccer Super Stars! March 31, 2017



Second Grade Word Wizards have been learning all about figurative language and why it is used in some types of writing. Figurative language uses images and comparisons to describe something or make it clearer. On Wednesday, students were introduced to idioms. This is a type of figurative language that doesn’t have the same literal meaning as its intended expression. Each student chose an idiom to read and interpret its meaning. After discussing the idiom with a partner. Students received another expression and acted out the literal meaning.




This week students began practicing and learning all about the fundamental skills of soccer. Second Graders partnered up and worked on basic techniques such as throwing the ball, trapping it, and passing. After practicing the proper ways of handling and passing the ball, students teamed up to play a 3v3 short-sided game. Before students could score each player had to touch the ball once, then they could shoot on the goal.



Our Second Grade scholars have learned so much about poetry! This week our poetry unit sadly came to an end. Second Graders reflected on how to read a poem for its literal meaning and for its deeper meaning. They learned to ask, as they read, “What is the poet trying to tell me?” and, “What emotion does this poem make me feel?” They also learned to pause their voices between stanzas and read punctuation carefully. These poetic readers are going to be well equipped for Pass-It-On!


Important Dates


April 4th                                 Charleston History Field Trip

April 5th                                 Make-up Picture Day

April 6th                                 JICP Climbing Wall

April 10th – April 17th             Spring Break

April 20th                               Silent Auction 5:30 – 8:30

Climbing to the Top! March 24, 2017

Tribute Poem


On Tuesday morning, students gathered in the library for a very special Whole School Writing Workshop. Every year on this day, teachers and students join together to write poetry that will honor the charity chosen for Pass It On. The tribute poem this year will relate to the Charleston Animal Society. Students wrote and shared poems that described big feelings, extended metaphors, and took on different perspectives. Students of every grade level submit their poems and all TCS students vote on their favorite. Once established, it gets to be on the very first page of the Pass-It-On book.




Students began Unit 8 by reviewing and extending concepts of fractions. Students learned that fractions are parts of a whole number by exploring fraction parts with pattern blocks. Students recalled important vocabulary words, such as numerators and denominators. They used pennies and counters to explore fractions of a total amount. Friday was dedicated to introducing fraction concepts and skills through various games. Second Graders enjoyed playing three different fraction games that will ultimately help strengthen their understanding.




Second Graders set off on their first climbing adventure this week! The class went to James Island County Park to climb three different walls. Students were able to climb the 25-foot self-propelled wall, experiment in the bouldering cave, test their balance on the slack lines, and conqueror some fears on the 50-foot wall. This is a great time of year for students to set individual goals. Most students were able to reach their goal by climbing to the top of the high wall. Others have set personal goals knowing that they have three more opportunities to reach the top. The class even chose a goal that the group could all strive to achieve together. Wall climbing is a surprisingly effective way of building classroom cohesion.


Important Dates


March 24th                                     Stingray Family Night 7:00 P.M.

March 25th                                     Planting Party – 9:00 – 10:00 A.M.

March 30th                                     Parent Forum – 5:45-6:45 P.M.

April 10th – April 17th                   Spring Break



Happy St. Patrick’s Day to All! March 17, 2017

Pass It On Charity


On Monday, TCS students were introduced to three different nonprofit charities during Whole School Morning Meeting. Birds of Prey, The Charleston Animal Society, and Pet Helpers all aim to help our animal friends. On Friday, students were given the option to vote for one of these charities. After a charity is established, they will focus their efforts on raising money for this charity through Pass It On.



Second Graders are learning to breathe life into their own poems by delving into reading poetry. They started a new unit in reading this week. Students began by discussing the unique characteristics of poetry. They practiced identifying the tone of the poem by reading it aloud and listening to the rhythm and rhyme. Scholars read several poems and identified the author’s perspective based on the literal meaning. As students are exposed to different types of poetry and the way it is written, they will become more confident in their own ability to write poetry.


St. Patrick’s Day


This Friday, Second Graders came into school to find that the leprechauns had visited their classroom and created some mischief! Students found all kinds of green items scattered about the room and a message on the board from a leprechaun. Later in the day, students all gathered for a special performance by Tom Morley and Hazel Ketchum. Afterwards, they met with partners to go on a “hunt” to search for a gift that was left for them from the “leprechauns.” This year, each student received a green shamrock necklace and a limerick to enjoy.


Important Dates:


March 24th                                     Stingray Family Night 7:00 P.M.

March 25th                                     Planting Party – 9:00 – 10:00 A.M.

March 30th                                     Parent Forum – 5:45-6:45 P.M.

April 10th – April 17th                  Spring Break

Jumping Ahead… March 10, 2017

Measurement and Data Collection


This week, students teamed up and measured the lengths of their arm span and standing long jump in centimeters and inches. They recorded their data and shared both measurements with the class. In the following lessons, students worked as a community to organize their arm span and long jump data from greatest to least. They created a line plot with Post-Its on the white board. Once they rearranged their lengths from smallest to greatest, it was easy for them to identify the mode (most common number), the median (the middle number) and the range (the amount between the largest and smallest numbers).


Writing Poetry


On Wednesday, Poetry enthusiasts transitioned into poetry writers. Scholars began by learning how to look at different objects with a poet’s eye. Students practiced capturing their thoughts and images with carefully selected words, metaphors, similes, and onomatopoeias. They proudly shared poems about dancing clouds, fireflies that make a flashlight glow, and lonely pencils patiently waiting to be used. By letting their imagination be stretched, these scholars were able to see things with a whole new lens.


Student-Led Conferences

Second Graders began the week leading their own self assessment conference. Students discussed their progress with their parents by rotating through four different centers. Brave scholars guided their parents through Math, Reading & Writing, Cooper Village and a Portfolio center. Each center focused on a rigorous skill or concept they have learned throughout the school year. Scholars highlighted their growth, strengths, and goals they wished to continue in order to achieve mastery.


Important Dates


March 12th                                     Daylight Savings Time – Turn Clocks                                                                                                                                                   Forward

March 24th                                     Stingray Family Night 7 P.M.

March 25th                                     Planting Party

March 30th                                     Parent Forum – 5:45-6:45 P.M.


Back to School Night!

We can’t wait to see everyone at Back to School Night on Friday, August 18th from 5:30 to 6:30!  New Parent Orientation will begin at 5:00pm in the Library.

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The Cooper School