Devils' Advocate

  • April 5Follow us on Instagram and Twitter! @hcdevilsadvo

How to pronounce students’ names

Attendance%3A+one+of+the+scariest+moments+of+a+student+with+a+difficult+name%27s+life.+
Attendance: one of the scariest moments of a student with a difficult name's life.

Attendance: one of the scariest moments of a student with a difficult name's life.

Michalea Halikias

Michalea Halikias

Attendance: one of the scariest moments of a student with a difficult name's life.

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






My name is Michalea. Mick-uh-lee-uh. Not Michaela, not Michelle, and definitely not Michael. I’m not even going to say my last name, because, well, it’s even harder to pronounce than my first name.

My name is mispronounced so often that sometimes I just stop correcting people. Not because people are dumb, but because my name is made up, so it is hard to remember. Literally made up. My grandpa’s name is Michael, and my parents wanted a girl form of that name. For some reason, “Michaela” didn’t suffice and they just had to rearrange a few letters and confuse everyone.

Michalea Halikias
Some teachers make students write their names on a piece of paper with the pronunciation to put on their desk at the beginning of the year.

If you’re anything like me, one of your biggest fears in life is walking into one of your classes and seeing a substitute teacher. Why, you might ask? Oh, because of one thing: attendance. 

Some of the worst words that could ever come out of someone’s mouth are, “I’m going to take attendance now- sorry if I butcher your name.” I mean, at least you get a warning, but there is no preparation for being humiliated in front of your class.

Worse than being humiliated in front of your class is being humiliated in front of the whole school. I’m talking about the birthday announcements.

It is always interesting to hear how students’ names are being pronounced right at the beginning of fourth period. Or, should I say, how they are not being pronounced. On their birthday of all days.

With that in mind, I’m going to give a few tips on how to pronounce names that look difficult.

First of all, don’t even bother sounding out the syllables. If you take too long, that is an obvious sign that you’re struggling with the name. You can’t let that happen.

Next, just don’t even look at the letters in the middle. As long as you know the first and last letters, you’re fine. Whatever comes out in between will probably be right.

Finally, once you’re done saying the name, make sure you have a confident look on your face. If you get corrected, look confused and try again. If you’re still wrong, just accept that you will probably never get the name right. Refer to them as “you” from now on.

So, when it is your birthday, don’t be ashamed if your name is mispronounced to the whole school. Just accept that how it was said over the announcements is what many people will think your name is.

Thank goodness my birthday is over the summer.  

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Leave a Comment




*

Navigate Right
Navigate Left
  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    Standardized testing: Where do we draw the line?

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    Third quarter blues

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    Astronaut. Princess. Veterinarian. Lawyer.

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    A Glimpse into Quiz Bowl (Scholastic Bowl)

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    PSA on PDA

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    The holiday music debacle; to listen or not to listen?

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    To sleep or to study?

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    To ditch or not to ditch: Senior class can’t decide

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    How to college: juniors start the application process as seniors begin to relax

  • How to pronounce students’ names

    Commentary

    Trivia crack app goes viral at Central – how long will it last?

The news site of Hinsdale Central High School
How to pronounce students’ names