Monday, May 15, 2006

On Naming...

I keep being astounded by the names that the women on my boards are throwing around. Having been a student, substitute teacher, and early childhood teacher I have 2 basic rules for our child's name. First, use a typical spelling and second, pick something the substitute teacher can pronounce. The pronunciation thing holds tru even if you'll have some fun nickname for the kid because the class roll always has the proper name and little Beast will not want everyone to know that his real name is Gabrielle.

This does not rule out exotic names that represent heritage. When going with a "heritage name" it is simply doubly important to go with a phonetic spelling and, if possible, keep it to 3 syllables or less.

The element of naming that I find most puzzling is the spelling thing though. The vast majority of our communication is verbal so, even if you got exceedingly creative and managed to stick in 3 y's, replace all s's with c's, and put in a silent "h" for good measure, the world will still know your child as "Kate." All you have managed to do is relegate your child to a lifetime of spelling her name for all and sundry and still getting mail addressed incorrectly. Also, what will your daughter do when she is 12 and must be unique and rebel by changing the spelling of her name?

If you want to do something creative, go wild with the middle name. If your child decides that there is a "McKaty" hiding inside her plain Jane self, then off to the middle name she will go.

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