Happy “Coos” Day from the 5th-grade classroom of Lincoln’s Teacher of the Year, Charlotte Davis!
Every morning, students in Charlotte Davis’ fifth-grade classroom are greeted by Hydro, the Scottish cow hanging on the wall. Davis has a deep love for Scotland and the Scottish highland cows. In Scotland, people say “Happy ‘Coos’ (cow) Day” instead of saying “Happy Tuesday.” To celebrate Coos Day, Davis wears cow t-shirts and puts up a picture of a highland cow on her Tuesday morning announcements.
Even more than cows or Scotland, however, Davis loves her students. Her goal is to make every student feel like they have a friend and someone to support them. She prioritizes her students' well-being by checking in with them throughout the day and learning about their interests outside of the classroom. To encourage them, Davis clips clothespins onto the backpacks of students who she feels went out of their way to be kind or to help someone else. The clothespins also serve to help students remember other good things they have accomplished. “It’s just that reminder, even when they go home, that someone’s there and someone cares,” Davis explained.
Davis also encourages her students to recognize their classmates’ efforts to be kind and supportive. They can do this by nominating a peer whom they have observed being kind to others to sit at the classroom’s VIP Table for the week. Davis allows each VIP student to choose a friend to sit with them at the VIP Table. She has been inspired as she has seen many of her students look out for each other as they notice and nominate classmates who have not yet had a chance to sit at the VIP Table.
Teachers at Lincoln Elementary describe Davis as welcoming, caring, organized, and exceptionally patient. “Charlotte's love of learning reaches into the hearts of her students,” observed Linda Marble, a speech pathologist at the school. “She expects a lot from them, but has great empathy for those students who struggle with academics, social skills, or emotional problems.”
Before teaching in Cache County School District, Davis taught in Grand County in Moab. She has now been teaching at Lincoln Elementary for three years–in fact, she taught some of her current students for each of those three years. When she started at Lincoln, she taught third grade, then fourth, and now fifth. She has enjoyed seeing her students’ progress over the years and the opportunity to continuously celebrate their triumphs with them.