Growing up, I hated my middle name. I hated it so much that I simply wouldn't tell people my full name or I would tell them the middle name that I wanted to have. In my teen years, my friends called me by my first and "middle" name that I had choosen at a young age in grades school. Not until the day I graduated, did the people I called my friends know my real full name. The announcer read my name off and with embarrassment I accepted my diploma and moved on. Many people were surprised and thought that the announcer had misspoke. But truly, I was the was to blame. As, I carry on with my life to adulthood my feelings have changed about my name. Instead of shying away from the name my parents gave me I embrace it. I might still not love it, but I respect it and who I am.
I asked the sixth grade students to complete "My Name Heart Map". This map is used as a graphic organzier for the students to reflect on their name. The students are required to place their name in the center of the heart and then include details about their names. A few of the details could include but are not limited to the following: the story behind your name, whom you were named after, how you feel about your name, your nickname, the name your friends use, if you've ever been teased about or complimented on your name, interesting facts or stories about your name, and/or questions you have about your name. After completing this chart the students are going to be asked to write a few paragraphs about their names.
I hope that by sharing our thoughts and feelings about our names everyone will embrace the name they have been given.
Jenna Patricia Sivetts