Teach Us Your Name by Huda Essa
📚 BOOK REVIEW 📚
Title: Teach Us Your Name
Author: Huda Essa
Illustrator: Diana Cojocaru
Rating: 8/10 🌟
If it is one thing Kareemalayaseendeen dreaded, it was having her name read from her class attendance sheet. Although no one made fun of it or gave her a hard time about it, she always thought her name was too long, too different, too difficult. She had grown so accustomed to the mispronouncing of it that she never had the courage to correct her classmates and teacher. When she and her family went back home to visit relatives, she realized that everyone was familiar with her long name. On this journey, her grandmother explained its beautiful meaning and encouraged her to guide and teach her name to others.
This story is really relatable to those young and old who live their lives correcting their constantly mispronounced name. Her name seemed to be a nuisance to her any time she had to write it on a sheet. The protagonist admits that others have never made fun of her name but this is what she assumes others think. I think this is a critical highlight in this story. We internally feel these emotions about ourselves and our identity because we already feel different in so many aspects of our lives. Although, the specific culture of the family is left out from the story, I love how the author had the main character reconnect to her roots in order for her to embrace her unusually long name. In essence if we do not understand ourselves, our roots and identity how can we teach that to others? I like that the first and last page of the book includes all kids of diverse names from all cultural backgrounds. I am not in love with the illustrations, they are just okay. I got my copy from Amazon.