HERTFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) –The school division describes Hertford County fourth grade Excellent Educator Regina Cooper as a data driven educator who shares her teaching strategies with others.
“Cooper is a results-oriented teacher who ensures her students reach their full potential,” the school system sent 10 On Your Side.
Cooper is fondly called “Super Cooper.”
“We are looking for Super Cooper,” we said as we entered the classroom at Riverview Elementary School.
“We are going to start with the video,” Ms. Cooper told her students as she stood in the front of the classroom at a giant TV screen that was showing the day’s lesson.
“The hot new thing is the main idea.”
The rap type music echos through the classroom in an English lesson on identifying the main idea of sentences.
It is clear the main idea is that Ms. Cooper is a great teacher.
“Supported by the details to keep it all clear,” the song continues.
Cooper’s lessons are delivered sometimes through produced rap lessons and rhyme, and kids are rocking as they were moving to the beat of the music as they sat in their chairs.
“If you have read something, and when you get to the end, and you didn’t get the point nope you didn’t understand,” Cooper said.
Cooper teaches with positive messages through rap that seems to work.
“Because it captures the children’s attention, so like if they sometimes are doing other things, the music and message bring back their attention and lets them learn we are ready for learning,” she said.
Her fourth grade students love her, and we asked them group questions.
“Does she make learning interesting?” They all screamed “Yes!”
“Does she make learning fun?” They all screamed “Yes!”
“Is she one of your favorite teachers?” They al loudly screamed “Yes!”
It is clear poet Maya Angelou has impacted Super Cooper, and this is one of her favorite Angelou quotes,
“I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Cooper responds, “When kids are learning, kids may forget their teachers, but they are never forgetting how caring you are.”
Caring, nurturing and impacting all define Cooper.
More questions for the children:
“Does she make you feel important?” They all scream “Yes!”
“Does she make you feel comfortable?” They all scream “Yes!”
“Does she make you feel like you want to be in school?” They all scream “Yes!”
She also talks with other teachers with tips on what works, and what doesn’t,
“I always share [the importance] teaching in small groups, so when you put children in small groups the ones who didn’t get it, you have that [ability for] one on one or fewer students at a time.
During class, a young student, Isabella, dragged the wrong word to a circle to answer a question on the big screen, and the giant screen showed red indicating wrong answer.
But through Cooper’s instruction, Isabella ends up with the highest score in the lesson.
Cooper explains, “So sometimes they have answers that have to be drilled down [eliminating the wrong answers to be left with the right answer] so they can have the best answer.”
Isabella then answered, “I felt like I had to take my time and do my best … and then I started getting them right.”
Isabella learned from a mistake and then went on to get all the rest of the questions right.
More questions for the students,
“Does she make you feel good?” They all scream “Yes!”
“Does she make you want to learn?” They all scream “Yes!”
“Does she come in every day with a very positive attitude?” They all scream, “Yes!”
We then asked Cooper: “is this why you became a teacher?”
She answered “Yes,” smiling and laughing along with the group response.
We then asked the children: “how many of you are glad she became a teacher?”
They all scream, “Yes!”
One child yelled out, “I love you Ms. Cooper!”
“I love you too,” she answered.
Another child yelled “Super Cooper!” and everyone laughed.
Below is what the Hertford School System sent us about Regina Cooper:
“Regina Cooper is an amazing 4th grade educator. She has been an elementary teacher for 18 years. She takes pride in her work and in her students. She goes above and beyond to ensure that all students are reaching their full potential. She also shares her strategies and successes with other teachers to help with their classroom endeavors. Cooper is a data driven educator who identifies the strengths and weaknesses of her students and finds research-based strategies to narrow their academic gaps. Her results-oriented teaching strategies provide students with a global perspective as it relates to becoming lifelong learners. She has been warmly titled “Super Cooper,” as she has demonstrated invincible drive to meet the needs of all students at Riverview Elementary School. Although she began this year as a second-grade teacher, Cooper was unexpectedly transitioned to fourth grade, and it was no surprise to see her putting those superpowers to work. Students’ behavior, academics, and their drive soon adapted to her motivational teaching abilities. As a mom who successfully balances home and work, she understands that building relationships with parents and guardians is key to a student’s success. Cooper is well deserving of being one of WAVY-TV’s Excellent Educators. She is a true inspiration to students and staff. Her dedication to her craft speaks volumes and this would be the perfect opportunity for her hard work and dedication to be recognized.”