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Baby Naming Tools

Baby Name Books

Dozens of books have been written on naming a baby, each with its own approach. Here are a few: "The One-in-a-Million Baby Name Book," by Jennifer Moss. This book takes into account the opinions of 1.2 million parents and features a popularity rating and common personality traits for particular names. "Baby Names," by Eleanor Turner. Updated annually, this book includes popular names for the year, celebrity baby names and trends, and has a section on what to do if you can't decide. "The Everything Baby Names Book," by June Rifkin. This book includes 25,000 names, Top 10 lists, fun name facts and a worksheet for keeping track of the names you're considering. "The Baby Name Wizard: A Magical Method for Finding the Perfect Name for Your Baby," by Laura Wattenberg. This book says it "uses groundbreaking research and computer-generated models to pinpoint each name’s image, examine its usage and popularity over the last 100 years, and suggest other promising ideas." "Cool Names," by Pamela Redmond Satran and Linda Rosenkrantz. For those inclined to follow a trend when picking a name for baby, this book delves into current naming trends.

Baby Naming Online

With websites that offer name definitions, origins and ranking, plenty of baby naming tools are available online, including: The Baby Name Wizard: This website offers name graphs and name mapping, in which you map the popularity of certain names in certain areas, and "Namipedia: The Baby Name Encyclopedia." Baby Namer: Simple to navigate, this site gives essential information on each name. It offers variants, meanings, nicknames, language and drawbacks. Social Security Administration: A straightforward site that lists names by their popularity in any given year. A handy tool for parents who are looking for something a bit different and want to avoid popular names.

Family Names/Tradition/Cultural

Often family tradition and cultural ties influence the baby naming decision. For parents searching for a family name, it can be helpful to talk to grandparents and look through family tree information. For those with strong cultural roots, the Babynology site has a wide selection of names divided by countries. This comprehensive site suggests names from all over the world. The chosen name can have lasting effects. David Figlio of Northwestern University has done extensive research on baby names. Interviewed by LiveScience, he said that when given to a male child, feminine-sounding names such as Shannon and Ashley can cause discipline troubles later in life. His research suggests that children whose names have difficult or unique spellings often have difficulty with spelling and reading.

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