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What’s in a name?

I love my principal!  I honestly can’t say enough good things about her.  She’s great at her job, but I love her personality more than anything.  She’s encouraging, supportive, and so funny!

I work at a school that’s almost an even split between Mexican American and African American students.  There are a few Jamaicans, a few Caucasian, and that pretty much sums it up.  Many students are actually mixed race babies from the above categories.  The staff is a more even mix between the groups, with 9 Hispanic teachers, 13 African American, 6 Caucasian, and an Asian thrown in the mix.  We also have a few mixed race teachers as well.

Today we were talking about some of the extremely unusual names our students have.  It’s important to note here that my principal is African American and has a common name.  We’ll call her Susan.  She married a man whose name is almost common.  We’ll call him Donal, like Donald just without the final D.  She has two children with common names.  Peter and Ashley.  Pretty straight forward.  Easy to read.

During some of our meetings we were filling out paperwork for our students and one of the other African American teachers, a lovely, young woman named Miranda, wondered aloud why a parent would give a kid such an unusual moniker.  The name was something similar to Der’Maestro.  Susan, my principal, piped up with, “Don’t act like you don’t know how we do.  You know how we do!”  I died laughing.  I said you didn’t do it!  Your kids have common names.  We also had to do paperwork on La’quadrion, Queylin, Geshowni, and Joshacheley.

I actually enjoy the unusual names.  It makes for much more interesting classes.  I would much rather say, “Chaneshea sit down!” than “Beth sit down!”  It’s like a tongue twister!

(All names have been slightly changed to protect the innocent, but believe me it didn’t add to or detract from the impact of their actual name!)


One response »

  1. There was an African-American boy in my class growing up named after the old film star Don Ameche – but they made it one name Donameche. I always thought that was fantastic.


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