Does anyone remember the song The Name Game? It was recorded by Shirley Ellis way back in 1964. The lyrics were really catchy: “Shirley! Shirley, Shirley bo Birley Bonana fanna fo Firley fee fy mo Mirley, Shirley.” Anyway, that’s how the song started and it continued to make rhyming words with names. To this day I can remember every one of the names in that song. But, when I conduct a training, I struggle to learn the names of my participants. Here are a few tips that I use that might help you too.
This helps me become familiar with some of the more common names and some of the more unique names. As an Affiliate Trainer you may already know some of your participants and will probably be entering those names into your Affiliate Trainer panel yourself. That’s another good way to begin learning them.
I always supply blank name tents and ask the participants to write their name on the front and the back. That way, I can see their name and face when I’m presenting and when I walk behind them while they are scoring. Sometimes I use the sticky name badges, but the tents work better for me.
I introduce myself and I ask them their name. And then I try to use their name almost immediately. This helps make sure that I heard their name correctly and that I am learning to pronounce it correctly as well.
I take a piece of paper and draw a diagram of how the tables are set up. As people introduce themself I write their name on the diagram to show where they are sitting. This is probably one of the most helpful tricks I have learned. While they are watching an exemplar video, I’m studying my name cheat sheet. I also use that page to make notes to myself concerning information that I need to mention to the group, such as filling out evaluations, testing dates, and so forth.
I try to have a brief, but personal conversation with each of my participants. I usually do it during a short break or at lunch or at the end of the day. Once I learn a little bit about that person it makes it easier to remember their names.
Learning and using our participants’ names during the training is just as important as it is for the classroom teacher to use their students’ names. It’s a sign of respect and it sets the stage for a great interaction. And we all know that interactions matter!
Now let’s see if I can do this, “Tracy!, Tracy Tracy, bo bacy Bonana fanna fo Facy, fee fy mo Macy Tracy!”
What name memorization tips do you use? Please share in the CLASS Affiliates Facebook group. We're always looking for new tips and strategies.
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When I first learned about CLASS Group Coaching—a training for early childhood professionals about building relationships with children—I was more than a little interested. This, I thought. This is what teaching is all about. It seems to be an obvious concept, but once we dig deeper, we are able to identify the whys and hows of our interactions. CLASS Group Coaching allows us to identify the benefits of our classroom relationships with our students and helps us be intentional in our daily practices. It allows us to utilize each moment we have with our students to deepen our understanding of their perspectives and genuinely connect with them as people. It helps us see the world from their view and guide their learning in a way that is relevant to them.
As a CLASS Group Coaching (MMCI) instructor, the sections of any given two-hour session may feel, at times, very goal driven. These sections titled "Know," "See," and "Do” are interconnected. In particular, it is possible to consider "Do" within "Know," and "See." When an instructor supports in-the-moment experiences that connect new knowledge to current practice, they make the CLASS dimensions more relevant to the educators' daily work. But how can we infuse more “Do” into “Know” and “See?” First, let's re-cap what happens in each section.
I have a confession to make. Recently, I used vacation time to stay home and watch Season 6 of The Walking Dead. I know, I know. How could I have let myself miss a whole season? Oh, and I feel a little bad about taking the time off from work too, but this was very nearly an emergency! I mean it was only weeks before Season 7 of the season premiere. I had to do something. Don’t judge.
While I was watching, I had the strangest feeling of deja vu. I felt like I had actually walked through a herd of zombies, but couldn’t quite place why it felt so familiar. Then it hit me—I had unknowingly created zombie-like participants during at least two of my previous CLASS trainings.