Today was the first day of the new semester. Since we’re on a block schedule, that means that I got all new students. I generally look on this as a good thing. As with the beginning of the year, I get to learn the names of all the kids in my classes. But before that happens, I have to learn how to pronounce them.
I have one request for the world in general. It’s not that hard… Really. Learn to spell! If you’re going to name your kid after a country or a continent, spell it like it is. And if you name your kid some wacky name and I mis-pronounce it? Not my fault! You are the one that can’t spell and has disregarded all rules of the language. Names from other countries I have no issue with at all. But when you make something up, you’re setting your kid up to have some issues. You better prepare them for the mispronunciation game for the future, because it’s going to happen.
When I first started teaching I had a kid named Shan. He pronounced it Shane. Clearly, a mis-spelling. I have another one that sounds like the (former) country, Taiwan. It’s definitely not spelled that way. There’s another with the name of that far off continent in the east. I would have thought to say it like the name Sasha with how it’s spelled. Don’t even get me started with all of the apostrophes! Yikes!
Hopefully I’ll get through the semester without stepping on anyone’s toes. God help me if I ever call one Zany – like it’s spelled.