Second Grade,
Ms. DeVaney-Wilkes, (Ms. D.)

“To be understood as to understand,
To be loved as to love, For it is in giving that we receive. . .”
~ from The Prayer of Saint Francis

My name is Suzanne DeVaney-Wilkes, but I'm better known as Ms. D. This is my thirty-ninth year of teaching, my thirty-first at Holy Cross. Time flies when you're having fun! Most of these years have been spent teaching second grade. It's such an incredible year of growth for the children academically, socially, emotionally, and spiritually. I still have fond memories of being a second grader myself. My hope is that your child will feel the same way I do about this special year of elementary school.

Students need a respectful, challenging classroom environment where they can feel comfortable and confident in their learning. Effective classroom management directly enhances the learning environment. Students who consistently demonstrate behaviors and attitudes that reflect the Schoolwide Learning Expectations (SLEs) become Busy Bee Self-Managers. The children really take these expectations to heart and do their best to become Busy Bees!

Second graders who have been baptized have the opportunity to receive the sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist during the school year. Please contact Andrea Swanson, the parish Director of Religious Education, if you are interested in having your child participate in the parish program. This is an important mission of the parish to deepen the children's knowledge of Catholicism and put their faith into action. The children come with open minds and hearts in order to more fully participate in the Church, the Body of Christ. Even though I am no longer directly involved in teaching the Sunday classes, I will offer support by planning with Mrs. Swanson and presenting faith-based lessons in the classroom.

It's wonderful to be part of the Holy Cross community. It feels like a home away from home.

Contact Ms. DeVaney-Wilkes


Great is our Lord, vast in power, with wisdom beyond measure.

                                          Psalm 147:5


Look what second graders are learning now . . .


  • The essential question for the sixth unit of study called Sacraments is ... "How is the Mass both a holy meal and a sacrifice?"


  • Basic addition and subtraction facts within 20 are being practiced regularly. Our goal is to become fluent (recall quickly and accurately) with these facts.
  • In Unit 3, we are learning about linear measurement using the U.S. customary units of inches, feet, and yards, as well as the metric units of centimeters and meters.

Language Arts

  • Students are reading a variety of texts from different genres this year. The biggest shift in second grade is reading to learn, instead of learning to read. That being said, I understand that each learner is unique. Small guided groups enable the teacher to provide the targeted instruction that students need in order to be successful. The Journey's reading series and many other resources are utilized to help meet the needs of all the students. Electronic books are also utilized during reading time. Students may access these books at home by clicking on this link My teacher name on the login page is sdevaneywilkes. The school has purchased a license for classroom and home use for the year. Please take advantage of this great resource!
  • The 6+1 Traits of Writing model is used school-wide to teach and assess student writing. Second graders are currently utilizing the writing process of focusing their ideas, writing a rough draft, revising, editing, and publishing. Students are currently writing in the narrative style. In grammar, we're learning about irregular verbs, adjectives, and adverbs.
  • Second graders reviewed the basic manuscript alphabet, otherwise known as printing, for the few few months of school. We are now studying cursive handwriting! This is a very big deal because second graders feel very grown up when they learn to write like older people. We use the Zaner-Bloser handwriting style for both manuscript and cursive.


  • We are investigating earth materials.

Social Studies

  • Students practice geography skills daily by reading maps and answering questions related to them.
  • The relative and absolute location of Holy Cross and its surrounding physical characteristics are being explored.


  • Seasonal projects and the exploration of line, shape, and color are the basis of our art lessons.



Click here to read The Second Grade Buzz .


Summer Learning

The second graders learned a lot this school year, but as lifelong learners they know there are always new ideas and skills to explore. Here are some ideas to keep their minds, hearts, and bodies active this summer...

Students may access electronic books at home by clicking on this link My teacher name on the login page is sdevaneywilkes. The school has purchased a license for use this year. Please take advantage of this great resource through August. Students should know their picture(s) to log onto the site. If they have forgotten, a login card is taped inside their read reading folder.

Another wonderful website that the students used this year is Students' usernames and passwords can be found in their yellow School Folders that were sent home the last week of school. Language arts skills can be practiced at home or while on vacation! Please utilize this awesome learning tool through August.

One more website for online math learning is Students have their own learning path to help with areas of need. We have utilized this tool throughout the school year. Login information is located in your child’s green math folder.

Please remember to log your summer reading minutes at

Summer Learning Letter - Click to read about more ideas to enhance your child's learning. 


Faith Formation

Learning about and having the opportunity to fully participate in the wonderful sacraments of Reconciliation and Eucharist makes second grade an extra special year!

These are some photos of last year's students.


Use this link to place your Scholastic Book Order online

The next book order is due by May 31st.


Service Projects

The second grade works with the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry with whatever they may need. We also provide service to the parish by making various projects, and writing notes for the homebound.

Second graders carried all the items donated during the fall Food Drive to the SVdP Food Pantry.

Students made table decorations for the annual Holy Cross Thanksgiving Dinner.