I am a preschool (Head Start) teacher, and while much of your "name unit" is well beyond the level of my kids, I did get a jolt of recognition when I first saw the title "What's in a Name?" One of the first themes I do at the beginning of each new school year is one I call "Everything has a Name," beginning with discovering how many different words can "name" who you are. Many of my little folk arrive not even knowing their last names, and some have been called a "pet name" or nickname their whole lives and are surprised to find out once they're in school that their teachers are calling them something completely different! So the first thing we establish is their actual names, first and last (and for some, a middle name as well), and what other names their families call them. And then we discuss/list the other words that "name" them: sister/brother, daughter/son, granddaughter/son, nephew/niece, boy/girl. We begin the process of learning to print their name. And we bring in the technology as well -- they do love to pick out the letters of their names on a keyboard! After we have established the words that name PEOPLE, we move on to the words that label/name other things: colors, shapes, numbers, letters, body parts, and everyday objects. We learn these names in English, Spanish, and sometimes another language that may be represented within the classroom population. It's a good way to link language, early literacy, and concept development right from the get-go, as well as a way to welcome them into the classroom community. I believe that I would like to add some components of your unit to mine -- especially the Name Research form, as a way to bring some parent/family involvement in (very important in Head Start!). Thanks for sharing this!
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