Capitalizing Names

Activity 2: Capitalizing Names

Purpose
To become familiar with the common convention of capitalizing proper nouns.

Material
The printed lowercase and uppercase alphabet.

Slips of white paper

Red coloring pencil

Pencil for each student

Language Arts journals and pencils

Presentation
Most Montessori teachers introduce this topic in Year 1 and review it as necessary in subsequent years.

Invite a small group of students to gather around a mat.

Announce to the students that today they will have the opportunity to learn about capitalizing names.

Distribute 52 lowercase and uppercase letters (26 of each).

Invite the students to line up the letters in straight rows on the mat, pairing each uppercase letter with its corresponding lowercase letter.

Point to the uppercase letter and ask the students if they can remember the term for these letters. Allow the students to respond with the answer “uppercase letters” or “capital letters.”

Encourage students to answer the question: “Does anyone know hen to use a capital letter?”

Explain to the students that people’s names, which are proper nouns, require a capital letter at the very beginning.

Using the red coloring pencil, print the first letter of one students name in uppercase on a blank piece of paper.

Pass the slip of paper and a pencil to the student whose name you started to write and invite him or her to finish writing the name in lowercase letters.

With the red coloring pencil, print the first letter of the other students’ names in uppercase on separate blank slips of paper.

Hand the correct slip to each student and encourage the students to finish writing their names in lowercase letters with a pencil.

Once the students have finished, place the name labels in a row on the mat.

Example: John, Mandy, David

Point to the first letters of the names and say, “Always capitalize the first letter of a person’s name.”

Using the red coloring pencil, print “Capitalize the first letter of a person’s name” in a long slip of paper. Read the sentence aloud.

Place the label at the tops the mat.

Invite the students to write in their journals three to five names with proper capitalization.

Extension
With a partner discuss other types of proper nouns. Make lists of several proper nouns according to category, such as countries, cities, schools.

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