Some nick names are annoying . . . for example when on the softball field my coach used to shout "BIG E!" (my name is Erica) . But some nicknames are endearing. . . like when my basketball coach would call me Fed (a short version of my last name that I liked because it was my big brother's nick name too, and doesn't every little girl want to be just like her big brother?)
Nicknames With 600++ names why would I want to learn any more? Because a good nick name can pull any kid out of any "funk."
Last week a first grader corrected me during attendance and said his name was Metroid. I wrote it down. I noticed he had been a little distant so I wanted a way to really get to know him, I knew Metroid was the ticket. This week, when I got to his name, instead of saying it I said Metroid with a straight face. He answered with a straight face. The rest of the class was baffled. It got the squirmiest of first graders attention. I asked the class, "can anyone tell me who Metroid is?" I was suspecting it was a character I didn't know about. The class had a lot of answers but no one knew. So I asked the boy where he came up with this name. He said Metroid is a character that no one can beat and can never die. Hmmmm . . . Interesting that one of the quietest boys has an alter ego of Metroid. I had to take the opportunity to explain that no matter what Metroid was pretend and no one was "invincible." We agreed that we all had to be safe and talked about the word pretend.
Of course the next hand that went up was a kid who wanted to be called Batman!
Later that class, I talked with the boy and he told me how his dad plays video games with him and how his dad can never beat him (how sweet!) It was so cool to hear my quietest boy finally come out of his shell all over a nick name. I will probably call him by the name his parents gave him, until I need to remind him of how cool he really is. Metroid is really an awesome name don't you think!
Do you ever have nick names for your students? I love a good story.