A lot of people new to CakePHP struggle with remembering what to call and when, a common thing I see people doing inside their controller is something like;

$this->Sections->recursive = 0;

When actually they mean something like;

$this->Section->recursive = 0;

I think the reason the Model is sometimes pluralised is because when you look at most examples of how to write controllers the very first thing inside the class is;

var $name = 'Sections';

The reason this is included in both the Model and the Controller is to punch PHP4 into playing nice. If you require PHP4 then fair enough, but the vast majority of us use PHP5 and as such have no need for $name. So I would implore you to remove it from samples and code that doesn't require it as some people seem to trip up over it.