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to think that teachers really shouldn't make a judgement of a child on their name alone?

(145 Posts)
Coochicoo Fri 19-Jun-09 20:40:10

I was speaking with a teacher at a mother and baby group recently and we got to talking about names. When I told her my daughter's name she said 'ooh, every little girl I've taught with that name is lovely', and when she heard my son's name she pulled a face and sucked the air in through her teeth and said 'they're all buggers in my experience'.

I've heard similar things before about boys with the same name as my son, and it upsets me a little that he may be judged by his teachers before he even gets to class. And if he does do something a bit naughty, as all children do, he'll be living up, or rather down, to the low expectations of him.

I don't expect teachers to pass judgement on any name, whether it be a positive or negative judgement. Surely they should see the children as individuals?

CurryMaid Fri 19-Jun-09 20:41:14

Is his name Jordan?

hercules1 Fri 19-Jun-09 20:42:55

I dont think you can make this generalisation about teachers based on your conversation with one teacher....

Haribosmummy Fri 19-Jun-09 20:43:17

I think, regardless of who we are, we do make judgements about people - and names are one of those instant things...
I mean, Henry Farquart-smythe is going to make you think of one sort of boy... Wayne Roberts is probably going to make you think of another.

But, to actually SAY it.... hmm

No, I don't think anyone should actually pass that judgement.

RumourOfAHurricane Fri 19-Jun-09 20:43:30

Message withdrawn

panicpants Fri 19-Jun-09 20:43:30

Or Josh?

Coochicoo Fri 19-Jun-09 20:43:52

No, similar. It's Joshua. I know it's extremely popular, but I love it. I think it's a classic, strong name for a boy. I've always loved it. I hate that it has such negative connotations.

panicpants Fri 19-Jun-09 20:45:22

But mainly I think the judgement isn't so much on the on the family! (Sorry, I'm not helping) And yes you're judgement should be voiced by anyone.

Chen23 Fri 19-Jun-09 20:46:23

this teacher is either

a) joking / being light hearted

b) socially inept

c) insane

to be honest my moneys on a

RumourOfAHurricane Fri 19-Jun-09 20:46:33

Message withdrawn

brokenspacebar Fri 19-Jun-09 20:46:52

I don't think all teachers judge a child solely by their name, and the ones who do, it says a lot about them as a person - and you cannot really protect your child, or yourself from people like this, just be aware they exist!

paisleyleaf Fri 19-Jun-09 20:47:35


Some people perhaps will pass judgment - but a teacher really, really should know better.
I had a stand-in midwife visit when DD was days old, and she said that DD's is a "naughty" name. Just came out and said it! I was surprised to be quite upset by it.

hercules1 Fri 19-Jun-09 20:47:56

Love the name Taya!

muggglewump Fri 19-Jun-09 20:47:59

We all do it, even if we don't admit it.
She shouldn't have voiced it though.

brokenspacebar Fri 19-Jun-09 20:48:04

oh and I know a teacher with a son called Joshua, who hasn't started school yet.....

hercules1 Fri 19-Jun-09 20:48:27

a teacher really should know better grin

JollyPirate Fri 19-Jun-09 20:49:13

Joshua is a lovely name and the Joshua's I've known have been lovely. I'm not a teacher but don't think I'd make any judgement about a child based upon name alone.

Was she just trying to make friendly conversation albeit in a very cack-handed kind of way ? You know the type of thing - opening mouth before engaging brain.

oodlesofpoodles Fri 19-Jun-09 20:50:16

There was some research a few years ago that showed that exam markers were influenced by names. Not quite the same as a teacher as they wouldn't know the actual person.

Chuffinnora Fri 19-Jun-09 20:50:55

I think the salient point here is that you were talking to her in Mother and Baby Group not in a professional setting. She was probably being flippant and (not very) witty.

She probably wouldn't dream of saying that to a mum in her school.

My son has slightly unusual name but every teacher and assistant always knows his name by the end of the first hour with him because he is a little bugger

ObsidianBlackbirdMcNight Fri 19-Jun-09 20:52:48

What's worse was the teacher (on mumsnet? facebook? I can't remember) who decided whether children would be badly behaved based on whether they had the same surname as their mother or not.

doobry Fri 19-Jun-09 20:52:52

There was a really long thread on a teacher forum somewhere a while back where they all pitched in and Judged Names. Made for very interesting reading. I wonder if it still exists. The link was passed around a lot.

conniedescending Fri 19-Jun-09 20:53:03

I think you'd be daft to think teachers didn't make assumptions about a child based on the name.

However the teacher shouldn't have expressed that to you......

I wouldnt have said Joshua was a naughty biy name though so maybe she has genuinely experienced some horrors!

chosenone Fri 19-Jun-09 20:53:07

I have to admit as a teacher I don't judge, but certain names do conjour up certain images! My own DS's name (Harry) seems to be a naughty boys name! I've not yet taught a naughty Joshua tbh. I do teach a girl who's name is the sir name of a famous italian designer and my initial image of her was pretty spot on! I did also teach a girl called Tia Maria years ago, made you wonder what the parents priorities were grin

edam Fri 19-Jun-09 20:53:33

Teachers DO pass judgment on names though and always have done, it's just one of those teacher things. I suppose if you've taught half a dozen Joshuas you will start to notice any trends...

But I don't think many teachers take it too seriously. You'd have to be fairly daft to think their first name is the most important thing about a child.

And, of course, it's just a possible that it is the teacher shaping the behaviour - that unconsciously, having expected little Phineas to be a handful based on a couple of predecessors, s/he unconsciously treats a new Phineas in her class in a way that encourages certain behaviours and discourages others...

Or that she tends to notice it when little Fenella plays up and not be so aware of the times she's sitting nicely and getting on with her work.

NormaSknockers Fri 19-Jun-09 20:53:45

I get one of 2 reactions when I tell people my DS name - either 'Oh that's really lovely' or 'oh, right' with a hmm face thrown in for good measure.

I couldn't give a flying feck what people think though as I adore the name & it suits DS to a tee grin

I wouldn't think about it much OP

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