10:45 09 September 2009
They're meant to be made of sugar and spice and all things nice, or so the rhyme goes, but it seems some girls are on the naughty list when it comes to their names. And while little boys are perhaps expected to be slightly less well behaved, some names let their teacher know they will show star quality in the classroom.
A new study has revealed that teachers make presumptions about the children from their names, spotting potential trouble makers on the first day of term after a mere glance at the register.
In the survey, 3,000 teachers drew up a list of naughty and nice names. For the girls, the name Chelsea was rated as the most likely to disrupt the class. Girls named Courtney, Chardonnay, Aleisha and Casey were also in the top five for trouble makers.
Similarly, the Callums, Connors and Jacks of the classroom are anticipated to be the worst behaved, followed by Daniel and Brandon.
Nearly half (49%) of the teachers surveyed admitted to making assumptions about a child when they first look at the register in September.
However, experience has also taught the teachers of the names of children likely to be the best behaved. As well as the "teachers' pest" list identifying the most likely to cause trouble, the researchers compiled a "teachers' pet" list. Girls called Elizabeth and Charlotte were expected to be the least disruptive.
Equally, traditional names for the boys seemed to rank best, with Alexander, Adam and Christopher topping the list.
Faye Mingo or parenting club Bounty.com, which commissioned the study said: "It's only natural for teachers to make judgements based on the behaviour of former pupils with the same name.
"But I'm sure they're happy to be proved wrong. After all, there is always an exception to every rule."
One in three teachers also said the naughtiest were often the brightest, and 70% believe children tend to be good at the beginning of the school year before their behaviour deteriorates as their confidence grows within the class. A similar amount believed that even the naughty kids are good youngsters really, but get carried away trying to make their friends laugh.
Children with peculiar names are likely to be the joke of the staffroom too, with the majority (71%) of the teachers surveyed admitting to chuckling about the obscure titles themselves, while 61% confessed to having difficulty pronouncing the more unusual ones.
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