What's in a Name?

What's in a Name?

by Judie Haynes

Do your students drop their names in order to become Michael or Karen? Help English language learners develop positive self esteem and pride in their native language names.

Many newcomers to the United States arrive at school on the first day with a new American name. Perhaps their native language name is difficult for English speakers to pronounce. Or their parents want them to fit in with their classmates. Give these students an opportunity to feel pride in their native language names with these back-to-school activities.

Lesson Topic

Developing cultural pride

Proficiency/Grade Level

Beginners, Advanced Beginners 2-6

Content Concepts and Skills

Identification and pronunciation of native language names; cultural identity; pride in home language and culture.

Materials Needed

PDF file Name Lesson. or PDF file Biopoem

Instructional Sequence

I. If your class contains advanced beginning English language learners or a mixed group or beginning and advanced beginning ELLs this is an ideal activity for the first week of school. Download PDF file Name Lesson.

II. Another activity to use with a mixed ability ESL group is the Biopoem. This poem can be accompanied by a self-portrait.


Activity Downloads

Note: To view the classroom activities, you must have Acrobat Reader intalled. Acrobat is a free application available from Adobe Systems.

PDF fileBiopoem (3k .PDF)

PDF fileName Lesson (5k .PDF)