Parent to Parent: 6 Easy Ways to Label School Supplies

Before you start writing your child’s name on all 64 crayons, see these six hacks from local parents for this back-to-school headache.


Crayons and pencils

Photo: Christi Young


Every summer, I regret my daughter’s name. This usually happens as I am try to squeeze all 15 letters on my 11th quarter-inch-wide crayon.


If you’re a newcomer to O‘ahu, it’s fairly common for elementary schools to request parents label every individual item on school supply lists. Yes, this includes every marker, crayon, and, my nemesis, colored pencil. On the plus side, it has ensured that Cassera brings home all of her supplies at the end of the year. However, writing her name over and over is not fun. Since she is a beginning writer, she writes her name so largely that it doesn’t fit on any item smaller than a composition book.


We turned to HONOLULU Family Facebook followers for their hacks to this back-to-school headache and received dozens of comments. Here are six quick fixes suggested by our readers.


1. Art & Signs labels

Rox Aim was finished marking her 9- and 12-year-old’s supplies in less than an hour using waterproof, personalized labels from this local company. “The price is very reasonable for the amount of stickers received,” she posted on Facebook. “The stickers are easy to place so the kids help me out. It’s so much easier than using my Brother labeler, where the plastic portion peels off after a month or so.” The price is $20 for 300 small labels, $5 for 25 larger ones. Art & Signs is busy right now, but typically can turn orders around in two to four business days. Art & Signs, 1409 Colburn St., (808) 841-8591. See more information on Art & Signs Facebook page.



2. Rubber stamps from RSODS

Sandy Ramiscal received her first stamp from a friend after complaining about the back-to-school labeling. Then, she ordered from local company RSODS, which can do one-day service. Using the stamp with a permanent ink pad, the Mililani Mauka mom says the names of her 9- and 11-year-olds won’t rub off even difficult-to-label pencils. The price is $8 to $10 for just the stamp, $50 to $55 for the kit complete with permanent ink. Mention HONOLULU Family and you can take advantage of a discount on the kit. RSODS, 1140 Kona St., (808) 591-1009,


3. Mabel’s Labels

“Fast shipping and the labels are tough!” Melissa Kono of Mililani wrote about these labels on Facebook. “They will withstand wear and tear, water, etc.” You can order them now and be ready for the next school year.


4. Address labels

Print out your child’s name on small address labels. Jo Mastin of Pearl City says how you put it on also makes a difference. Instead of going lengthwise, “When you wrap them around the crayon or pencil, the edges need to touch,” she posted.


5. Enlist the kids

April Goo of Honolulu gives her 7- and 10-year-old kids the label maker and lets them handle the chore themselves. “I do have to supervise, but it sure beats having to do it all myself!” she posted.


6. Spread out the work and include some “me time” 

One of our favorite responses came from Jennifer Brink, a Honolulu mom who handles this task with a label maker, working in phases, and starting with bigger items including glue sticks and folders. “Now, I’ll spread out the pencils, crayons and markers over the next couple of nights,” she posted, “while I watch TV (not kiddie shows) and eat chocolate 😉 . ”


Do you have any other back-to-school tips to share with parents? Post your idea on HONOLULU Family’s Facebook page.