ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary Education

ChildForum Office of Pre-Primary EducationLead advisor on early childhood care and education 
National membership 

Publisher of the New Zealand-International Research in Early Childhood Journal


Baby Names - Boy and Girl Unique Names, Most Popular and Maori Names

naming baby is an awesome responsibility

What name is right for your baby?

The litmus test of a good baby name is whether you can answer these two questions with a YES:

1) Do you feel comfortable and pleased with your choice?

2) Do you believe it is a good choice for your child's lifetime?  

Naming your baby early, before birth, is recommended as a way of helping to bond with baby and for baby to be accepted as part of your family.

If you do not know until after the birth if baby is a girl or boy - then have two names selected and call baby by both alternate names until baby is born.


choosing baby namesBoy Names

Available on the ChildForum website a list of the top 10 boy names in New Zealand, and also lists of unique names, popular names and Maori boy names - Go to the Boy's baby name page


Girl Names

A big selection of names for girls, including the most popular names over the years, names that are unusual and Maori girl names can be found by going to the Girl's baby name page    


Things not to forget about when choosing a name for your baby

While making your choice, consider the following: 

  • Can the name be altered or shortened to form a nasty or hurtful word?  Think about name calling and bullying for when your child is school-aged.
  • Can the name be easily pronounced and recognised in the community and country you live in? 
  • Hyphenated names e.g. Smith-Roberts are now less fashionable. Another practice is to use one parent's surname as the middle name and the second parent's surname as the child's surname.  
  • Will the name conjure up negative feelings every time you say it?  Avoid the names of people you don't like, even if you like the name.  And don't name baby with the same name as a family member or friend who may be at risk of falling out with you sometime.  Why?  Well children pick up on their parents emotions and will notice that the name has negative associations for you. 

The choice you make must be done with every care and consideration.  Make your choice with your child's future in mind. 


Further helpful information

Breastfeeding when mum goes back to workSigns that your childcare options are breastfeeding friendly and will be supportive

Childcare choices advice - See this information

Controlled crying technique to help a baby to sleep - but should you use this technique? - Read More

First birthday ideas and planning great parties for under-fives - Go to this cheerfully inspiring article

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