“Thinking of a Name” – A Signing Song


Did you know that American Sign Language, or ASL, is the fourth most-used language in the United States? More and more preschools are including some ASL in their curriculum, and research indicates it may even help hearing children with oral language and reading!

This song, and other songs using ASL, are included in my book “Shake, Rattle, and Roll: Rhythm Instruments and More for Active Learning.”

The ASL sign for “thinking” is made by using your pointer finger to make a circle by the side of your forehead.  This is a quiet, relaxing activity that also helps children learn each other’s names.

Children should be sitting in a circle. Make the sign for “thinking” when that word is used in the song. Sing to the tune of “Shoo Fly”:

                        I’m thinking of a name that starts with a (B),
                        (Do the sign for “thinking,” then clap to the beat)
                        Thinking of a name that starts with a (B),
                        Thinking of a name that starts with a (B),
                        The name I’m thinking of is (Brendan)!

Repeat for all the names in the class, if possible. You may want to pause before you announce the name and see if the children can guess it.

For fun, you can mix up the movement to keep the steady beat, having children
pat their thighs or tap their heads.

Learning benefits of “Thinking of a Name” include:

Curiosity (exploring music and movement)

                        Learning an ASL word

                        Fine motor skills

                        Phonemic awareness (recognizing letters and connecting them to


                        Auditory processing

                         Responding to auditory cues




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s