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Learning Children's names

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by Bestupplyteacher, Aug 4, 2015.

  1. Hi all! What do you do to learn the children's names when you walk into an alien environment for a day or two?

    Try this out:

    When I do the register I ask the children to wave at me when I call their name out. Until I can remember, I call the children either Sir or Madam. This makes them feel happy and makes a good impression to the children. They smile sometimes!
  2. nearmiss

    nearmiss Lead commenter

    If the teacher has failed to provide a picture register and seating plan, ask the school for one. If you get in early you will have time to do this. It's the least they can do if the absence was planned. It is a requirement in good schools as it demonstrates that the teacher has some sort of control over the class.

    It really isn't your job, as a supply teacher, to introduce a temporary set of eccentric rules but to provide a seamless transition and ensure that students are safe and that learning takes place.

    You are not a babysitter or their new best friend.

    To be honest, whether they smile or not is no indication of whether learning is taking place. They don't need to like you. It's not about you.
  3. PizzoCalabro

    PizzoCalabro Established commenter

    I rarely do primary, but do find it passive-aggressive when the teacher does not leave you the bare necessities to do the job - eg seating plan and pictures..
  4. It can be stressful. I was asking just if this wasn't left. A lot can happen in Supply Land!
  5. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    I have only worked in primary schools a couple of times, but you are right BST it is best to have a strategy in place for those times you might not have a list or photos left for you.

    One idea I have read about but personally have not tried is ask the children to write their names on labels that they can stick on their jumpers.

    You could also try getting the students to make a place marker with their name on it that they then could place in front of them.

    Believe it or not I used to go to a secondary school where I did not get photos and counted myself blessed if I got a class list.
  6. You can try this next time you do primary!
  7. I work in primary. I get the first child in the register to stand up, say their name and wave. Then they sit down, and the next one, then the next one... without me having to do anything except tick and wave back or say "Good Morning ........" in response. Of course, this only works with the older primary kids who know their register order. I've never taught secondary but I imagine it would work just the same.

    I tell them i do it so I can see their face and try to remember them and also hear how they pronounce their name. If it's an unusual name I often repeat it and ask if I said it correctly..... I work in London, so lots of multicultural names. I also ask Samuel if he prefers Sam etc and try to remember these. It seems to make a good impression on the children and get them on side from the beginning of the day.

    My first few days on supply, I almost sweated trying to do some of the registers! It probably sounds silly, but I started doing the register this way to stop me feeling on the spot right at the start of the day but it really had helped me pick up children's names too.

    You have a list in front of you, so you know right away if someone is trying to pull a fast one and make up a fake name which is my concern with using sticky labels.

    Plus, it's diff to the norm so the kids usually get a kick out of it.
  8. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    Your system sounds interesting for primary but I don't think it would work in secondary.

    Taking the register is one job I dislike; in secondary most school policy will say the students must be silent when the register is taken and I do insist that it is taken in silence. I try to put something on the board for them to think about while I take the register.

    I make a huge effort to remember names but it is hard when I might meet up to 100 children in one day in secondary and if Imwork in different schools that could be 500 a week if I work every day.
  9. I also like the idea. It is good to hear their voices. I actually like taking the register. It gives a chance for the shy children to speak and say good morning to me.
  10. americanateach

    americanateach New commenter

    I did primary supply and I was never left a picture class list or a seating chart. It wasn't really a problem. I'd look up when doing the register and try to catch some names, and I'd look at their names on book covers while walking around the room too.

    Although twice I've had children try to go by different names and swap. It's infuriating. A simple seating not chart would solve the problem, but again, I've never seen one.

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