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Favorite Names #SOL15

18 Mar


A week or so ago, my brother-in-law reminded me of a student I once taught, named Henry Heppenheimer. The details about him are sketchy in my brain, but his name is not. i have a collection of student names that I like and his is one of my faves.

Another favorite I’ve collected is Oupasong Sisombath, or Oupie, as we called her. How can you not LOVE a kids name Oupie?! She was in grade two and had a brother named Monivong, but that wasn’t as fun to say. They were refugees from Cambodia at the first school I taught at. That’s where I started to learn about refugee kids. Aside from my 3 years in Medellin, Colombia, where I taught the very wealthy, my career has been at mostly  low-income schools, with a lot of immigrant families.

This year, I have three kids in my class from Nepal. And one from Afghanistan.

One of my favorite name stories is from a few years ago. I taught a boy named Nermin. His parents were Bosnian and fled the Balkan war in the 1990’s for Germany, where Nermin was born. When I had him in 4th grade, his mother was pregnant. When he came back to school after his brother was born. Nermin was shaking his head. All he said was, “They named him Ermin!”

There are host of names that teachers collect. Angel, a 4th grader from my first years of teaching, was the first kid to call me the B-word.  There is the “Names I’d Never Name my Kid” list, based on naughty or difficult children we’ve taught. She was the first on that list for me.

I wonder, what names do you remember?

The Kate Greenaway Medal 2015 shortlist

18 Mar

The CILIP Kate Greenaway Medal was established in 1955, for distinguished illustration in a book for children. It is named after the popular nineteenth century artist known for her fine children’s illustrations and designs. 

Here is the shortlist

The Promise by Laura Carlin (illustrator) and Nicola Davies (author) (Walker Books).


Jim’s Lion by Alexis Deacon (illustrator) and Russell Hoban (author) (Walker Books).


Shackleton’s Journey by William Grill (Flying Eye Books).


Dark Satanic Mills by John Higgins and Marc Olivent (illustrators) and Julian Sedgwick and Marcus Sedgwick (authors) (Walker Books).

Dark Satanic


Smelly Louie by Catherine Rayner (Macmillan Children’s Books).


Goth Girl and the Ghost of a Mouse by Chris Riddell (Macmillan Children’s Books).


 Tinder by Sally Gardner (author) and David Roberts (illustrator) (Orion Children’s Books).



The Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan (Hodder Children’s Books)

Rules of Summer


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