The Three Ians

I’ve been at my school for almost two years, teaching the same class (Kindy). Last year, I had a blow out with my manager about the names of my kids. They put a new student into my class towards the second month of the first semester. I was already furious that this child had to “catch-up” with the material that he had missed, however, worse than this, was his name. I already had a student with the name Ian in my class. This new kid’s name was Ian and it caused a lot of problems. I had two students responding to my requests and after some time, they both began to not respond at all.

After a long meeting with my manager, I was given three options; 1) Get on with it, 2) call one student Ian 1, and the other Ian 2, or 3) Call one Ian Fang and the other Ian Wang. I obviously wasn’t going to go with option (2) as I think that would be a serious belittling of Ian 2, and there was no way that I could continue the way I was going, so I went with option (3). My Chinese sucks and this option just didn’t work out. It has been a constant source of confusion for myself and both students since then. I’ve brought it up in every teachers’ meeting, all to no avail. I even wrote several letters to Ian 2’s parents in an attempt to get them to change their child’s name. I guess they didn’t understand my English or the letters went “missing”.

I was given a new student yesterday. His mane? You guessed it, Ian, Ian Chang. There is no way that I can deal with this. Apart from the Ian situation, I’m perfectly happy with 80% of my job. Please, can anyone who’s been in a similar situation please offer some advice. I don’t want to find a new job.

Thanks,

Ian

It could be worse,keep smiling :slight_smile:

You have to adapt. This will happen constantly. Just get option 3 straight in your head and quit agonizing over it. Don’t feel too bad, I have a class now with two "Peter Liao"s. I’ve had to go to the dreaded option 2. In practice I use option 1 anyway–it keeps everyone on their toes :slight_smile:

On another level, someone’s name is their name, not a re-stickable label for your convenience. What if someone said to you “your name is causing me inconvenience, we have to change it.” I draw the line at “Seven-eleven” and such, but beyond that I’m surprised this is a problem for you.

[quote=“Tempo Gain”]You have to adapt. This will happen constantly. Just get option 3 straight in your head and quit agonizing over it. Don’t feel too bad, I have a class now with two "Peter Liao"s. I’ve had to go to the dreaded option 2. In practice I use option 1 anyway–it keeps everyone on their toes :slight_smile:

On another level, someone’s name is their name, not a re-stickable label for your convenience. What if someone said to you “your name is causing me inconvenience, we have to change it.” I draw the line at “Seven-eleven” and such, but beyond that I’m surprised this is a problem for you.[/quote]

Except its not REALLY the kids name.

Just make up a name, call him that. Ftw

I disagree. A name is a name and deserves respect. Who are you to tell him that’s not really his name?

Seeing how the OP signed his post, “Ian,” and that the post is utterly ridiculous, I can only assume he’s making a (poor) joke.

If he isn’t, and he worked at my school, I would have fired him long ago.

[quote=“Taipan1975”]Seeing how the OP signed his post, “Ian,” and that the post is utterly ridiculous, I can only assume he’s making a (poor) joke.
[/quote]

Hmmm you may be right :slight_smile:

You know the kids like you if they start using your name.

On his fucking birth certificate, it sure as hell dont say “Ian”. Its not his real name :doh:

By the time he’s 15, he may change the name a few times.

Dude, I would so just call the other Ian’s “fairy”, or maybe “Tracy”, something a little embarrassing…eventually, being called a girl’s name the kid will choose to change it himself.

Just call them all Bruce.

On his fucking birth certificate, it sure as hell dont say “Ian”. Its not his real name :doh:

By the time he’s 15, he may change the name a few times.

[/quote]

Which is his prerogative. You can also change your name. A person’s name is much more that what’s written on some government issued paper.

Especially it seems here in Taiwan - lots of my university students (and my wife, for that matter) use their English name more than they use their Chinese name, and consider the English name their “real” name as it were. Mind you, when the kid is five the name may not mean that much to them, but it still doesn’t seem right for a teacher to change it. I already find it uncomfortable enough when Taiwanese friends want me to give their kid an English name.

This is the first time this has happened to you? I’ve taught so many multiple Jens and Annes and Amys over the years - often enough that there have even been a couple of times when they had the same family name, which was a real hassle: I, very apologetically, used their student number as well.

On his fucking birth certificate, it sure as hell dont say “Ian”. Its not his real name :doh:

By the time he’s 15, he may change the name a few times.

[/quote]

Which is his prerogative. You can also change your name. A person’s name is much more that what’s written on some government issued paper.[/quote]

Is it? Hes 5…5, and he probably got the name last week. He has no prerogative. We all know what an idiotic joke english names are her, “baby, tank, moonface, bambi” etc.

Call the kid what you want.

i knew a teacher before and he had the same problem.

So he gave them adjs to add to their name. Fat Ian, Thin Ian etc etc. If you give them a descriptive adj, it is easier to remember their name. Probably not PC though.

Anyone who is sacked or beaten because of my advice deserved it.

Look at it this way.
When I want to get my class back under control, I often have to call each students name very quickly, always trying to cut each student off milliseconds before they can initiate another disruption.
With two Ian, two Peters and two Billies, it should be half the effort.

Ian! Billy! Peter! and 6 students shut up already.

[quote=“shiadoa”]It could be worse,keep smiling :slight_smile:


[/quote]

That vid was crazy funny.
But back on topic. I could understand your gripe if it were the manager who was naming these kids, but I’m gonna guess that it’s not. You can’t go around changing people’s names because you feel it’s inconvenient. Here’s the solution.
Ian F, Ian W, Ian C and you are Teacher Ian. No confusion.

On his fucking birth certificate, it sure as hell dont say “Ian”. Its not his real name :doh:

By the time he’s 15, he may change the name a few times.

[/quote]

Which is his prerogative. You can also change your name. A person’s name is much more that what’s written on some government issued paper.[/quote]

Is it? Hes 5…5, and he probably got the name last week. He has no prerogative. We all know what an idiotic joke english names are her, “baby, tank, moonface, bambi” etc.

Call the kid what you want.[/quote]
I am amazed by how little value people attach to what other people call themselves. It is a method of identification. A chosen one. One which you are and become familiar with. You have no idea why the kid is called Ian. So you can’t just call him what you feel like. You must be a little “confused” over how names work.

When I was in Primary School, three of us girls had the same name. The other two made me sit in the middle and answer all the questions when our name was called. We also had two Roberts and two Davids. We were never asked to change our names. The teacher handled it just fine, using a last name or pointing at us, or letting me answer all the questions.

My sweet lord, are you joking? You know this happens far more in the ‘west’. Four Katherines in my class at school, three Claires, two Charlottes, Deborahs, Angelas, etc.

Just read their full name when you are taking attendance and besides that, look at them when you are talking to them.

And stop creating dramas about minutiae, or your 20s will be a right pain in the arse.

Call them Ian F (E and F) and Ian C (E and C). Or Ian A and Ian 1. Your fellow staff members must think you are crazy for bringing this up in a meeting. And yes, look at them when you talk to them or point at them… what you doing having them not facing you… and can’t you walk over to them? I’m teaching summer school right now, got 24 adults in ONE of my classes. I got Uyanga and Oyu from Mongolia. Lee, John, Dae Keun and Yoon Sung from Korea. Raquel, Soledad, Bibiana and Maria from Spain, Maki and Yuki from Japan, Tsvetelina from god knows where, Kajetan and Orsolya from Hungary, Ajantham from India, Pavel from Lituania… You think YOU’VE got a name problem, buddy you don’t know the half of it. I’ve also got a female student called Liam!

Personally, I’d kill for a couple of Ian’s.