I like to work a lot with students’ names when I’m teaching. Their names are incredibly important to the children, as are their friends’ names. If it’s meaningful to them, the kiddos are much more active and involved in the learning process. Four and five year old children are learning how to write their names, so this is a logical offshoot of that. Name kits help with teaching young children their names.
Teaching Young Children Their Names
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At the beginning of the year, my students and I make these “name kits” to keep in their book boxes for the year. I include a few different items in each child’s name kit (and each can be tailored to the specific needs of individual children).
First, there is a laminated sentence strip with the child’s name written on it. The student uses this as a reference for how his name should look. Laminating it helps it to last all year, and it allows the child to trace over my writing using a dry erase marker.
Also included is a name puzzle. This is basically the child’s name written on a sentence strip, and cut apart into individual letters. This allows the student to practice putting her name together in the correct manner.
While making the name kit, I have the child pick out magnetic letters. These are the letters in his name, of course, and go into a baggie for the name kit. Magnetic letters are just a different take on the name puzzle. The letters are a bit more tactile, and they allow for use on magnetic easels/boards.
The students also make a name book for inclusion in their name kits. These books are simple to make, but are very engaging to the kids. Thanks to Jamie of Play to Learn Preschool, we now have editable, printable name books available HERE, too!
To hold all the pieces of the name kits, I use a small manila envelope. I cut off the metal tab on the back, then run it through the laminator for added durability (this works with my school’s big laminator but not with the small home laminator). Then I use scissors to gently cut through the laminate on the back of the envelope, thus opening it up. A simple, unlaminated, envelope would work just as well!
There are so many other ideas when it comes to teaching with students’ names! I gave the name kit its own post because it’s what I like to start with. I use the name kits as a fun way for teaching young children about their names, their friends’ names, letter names, and letter sounds. Do you use name kits with your students?
Looking for more name activities for teaching young children? Here are a few more to check out –