Meaningful ways to explore children’s names in your classroom

One of the best places to start when it comes to teaching young children how to read is to begin with their name. Young children are highly interested in their own name. It has meaning and value to them – it is personal…

Exploring Names in the Environment

Because my wall space is limited, I don’t have a traditional “word wall” like many classrooms do but I do have space for smaller charts throughout the classroom. I have two charts on the wall that display each child’s name at all times. One of the charts is an attendance chart and the other is simply a name chart. The charts are down low so the children can  see and touch their names whenever there is a desire or reason to do so…

Rather than just printing the children’s names on a list to hang on the wall – I like to print each child’s name on a sentence strip and then laminate it. I want the children to be able to interact with their name by looking for it, moving it and using it…

Graphing with Names

The children also find their names through other activities in our classroom like through different graphs and charts we explore…

Name Tracing

We also keep our names handy in our crayon bags so the children can take them out anytime and use them to try and write their own names…

And we play games that invite us to examine our names even further like this sensory name game I have previously shared with you….

Promoting Name Recognition

In the past few weeks, I have been amazed at how much progress the children have already made in recognizing not only their own name but the names of their peers.  We have a lot of names that start with the letter K this year. It has required my “K” children to look for more than just the first letter in their name….

Name recognition can happen naturally over time. It just takes keeping those names visible and an interactive part of the children’s day.  Everyday our students are looking for their names – on walls, hooks, charts, papers, and in the games we play….


That name up there on the wall

Isn’t just for decoration.

It has meaning, value, and is very personal

in early childhood education.