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ERIC Number: EJ1125740
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jan
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0736-8038
The Significance of Personal Names for Very Young Children
Ostler, Teresa
ZERO TO THREE, v34 n3 p28-33 Jan 2014
Personal names are more than just a sound or word. From the earliest stages of development, names are closely connected to a child's attachment figures and sense of identity. Like words of magic, young children first use names to beckon the parent to them. Experiences with others provide the necessary backdrop for young children to infuse names with meaning and feeling. As names become imbued with strong feelings and memories, they become like transitional objects, objects which provide comfort at bedtime, during brief separations, or in new situations. The article examines how names are internalized and looks at their fate during a prolonged separation or when their emotional connection is lost. It also explores how transitional phenomena and a child's developing capacity to be alone make play, imagination, symbol formation, and subjectivity possible.
ZERO TO THREE. 1255 23rd Street NW Suite 350, Washington, DC 20037. Tel: 800-899-4301; Tel: 202-638-1144; Fax: 202-638-0851; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A