32 answers

Names on Backpacks?

Im ordering my little soon to be 1st grader a new back pack. Every sight I have seen gives you the option to put your kids names on back packs. Does anyone else think this is a big "no no" or is it just me?

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So What Happened?™

Cheryl, I know it happens! When I was 10 a friend of mine was kidnapped and killed. They always taught us NEVER to have our names on anything. The key chain thing is a good idea though!

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I would NOT put my child's name on the outside of the backpack...why? because some psycho can read their name - call them over and BAM! my kid is gone...

I know that's far out - but it does happen and it sucks...

7 moms found this helpful

As fun as it sounds to mark everything up with names, I don't do it for two reasons.
1. Safety. Like others mentioned. Can't even allow myself to type what could happen. (Gulp)
2. It makes it harder to pass down good quality items to another sibling, cousin, etc. or to donate the item and know someone will use it.

Great question as it will hopefully lead to some awareness to other moms who may have never thought of it.

We bought a cute, cupcake shaped luggage tag to put on my daughter's backpack with only her first name and my cell number.

6 moms found this helpful

No, too easy for a weirdo to try and make friends with an unsuspecting child. I always let my child choose something that could clip on, a key chain or small toy, so they could see which was their backpack immediately.

5 moms found this helpful

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My daughter wears a navy and white uniform to school and my niece sent her a really nice pink and navy Nautica back pack. I wanted to label it for her, but didn't want her name to be visible, or have a sharpie bleed through and make it look messy. I went to Walmart and used the self serve machine to engrave dog tags with her name, school name and my phone number and attached it as a zipper pull. Hopefully if we lose it, it will some how make it's way back to us. The tag is really cute, and it is not visible unless you are holding the backpack and trying to figure out how to open it. It is also indestructible and in addition to the regular dog bone shape, they have hearts, round circles, fire hydrants, some are enameled and some even have bling! We have two Walmart super centers in out town, and one has those machines in the front of the cashiers, and one does not. I know they also have them in Petco and Petsmart.

9 moms found this helpful

I would NOT put my child's name on the outside of the backpack...why? because some psycho can read their name - call them over and BAM! my kid is gone...

I know that's far out - but it does happen and it sucks...

7 moms found this helpful

Go with the 3-initial monogram. That way, your child's pack can be identified among the 50 million identical ones, yet no one knows what his name is.

7 moms found this helpful

As fun as it sounds to mark everything up with names, I don't do it for two reasons.
1. Safety. Like others mentioned. Can't even allow myself to type what could happen. (Gulp)
2. It makes it harder to pass down good quality items to another sibling, cousin, etc. or to donate the item and know someone will use it.

Great question as it will hopefully lead to some awareness to other moms who may have never thought of it.

We bought a cute, cupcake shaped luggage tag to put on my daughter's backpack with only her first name and my cell number.

6 moms found this helpful

Definitely not! While they look adorable, I don't want someone knowing my child's name!

6 moms found this helpful

No, too easy for a weirdo to try and make friends with an unsuspecting child. I always let my child choose something that could clip on, a key chain or small toy, so they could see which was their backpack immediately.

5 moms found this helpful

I shop at one step ahead a lot and I always see that option. I have never done it. Just that much easier for someone to get my kid's attention who shouldn't be. Rather safe than sorry. Not worth it to me.

5 moms found this helpful

Big no-no.

I mean, sure, if someone is stalking my kid they know their name... but at least they put some effort into it. But for random strangers to see my son walking around and be able to call him by name. Nope. Nuh-uh. Not gonna happen. Why make it EASY on perverts?

I just used a sharpie on the inside of my son's bag so if there was any confusion at class/camp/etc... easy fix. ALSO added my cell number, originally to make it easy on the school, so they didn't have to waste time looking up my contact info. Which turned out to be an awesome thing when he left his bag on the *public* bus. The bus depot gave us a ring, and I picked it up same day. OTW it would have gone into the cavernous lost and found (The worker said they had over 200 backpacks from the past 90 days alone, and that my son's and 2 others were the only ones with contact info. I'm still blown away having spent time in the UK that strange bags are picked up, much less opened. But that's me.)

4 moms found this helpful

We only do initials because the last thing you want is someone to yell "hey Joe your mom told me to pick you up" our school actually requires ou to sign your child out an if they don't know you you must be on the pick up list and have a photo Id.
As a back up My kids have been taught they cannot go with anyone other then me unless they tell them the password even dad if he unexpectedly picks the kids up from school must tell the boys the password.

4 moms found this helpful

I NEVER, put my kids' whole name, on their belongings or backpack. Period.

I only put, initials. Their first/middle/last name initials.
And I put MY cell number on it, saying "if lost or found, call: -------"

I order my kids backpacks from LL Bean.
GOOD quality backpacks and warrantied. For life.

AND, I ALWAYS, attach an identifying object on my kids backpacks, so that THEY and others, can VISUALLY instantly tell, that it is theirs or not theirs.
Like a huge yarn Pom-Pom or something.

I order bag tags/luggage tags, from E-bay. You can put what you want on it. Then attach it to your kids backpack/lunch bag, etc.

4 moms found this helpful

I have seen so many cute backpacks with the name. I won't buy them though. We teach our children to only go with someone they know. A stranger will "know" them because the name. I used to buy keychains with their name or initial and put that on. A friend's sister got backpacks with her kids' nicknames. Her little girl almost went with a guy because he knew her nickname. the teacher stopped her.

3 moms found this helpful

I'm on the same page. All it takes is for someone to read the name and say 'Hey Timmy! Your mom sent me!'... game over. I was brought up putting my name on the inside of everything, and I do the same with my kids (except their lunchboxes, but only because they're the same and they stay IN their back pack).

3 moms found this helpful

I agree that it's a scary thing to put your childs name on a backpack where a stranger can call out their name and act as if they are a friend of their mom or what have you...too scary. I think a monogram is ok but in all reality, my kids have never mixed up their backpacks yet so I'm not real concerned with making sure they stand out from the rest. Plus, at our school (and pre-school) each child has their own labeled cubby so it would be pretty tough to mix up backpacks.

2 moms found this helpful

I put their initials on their backpacks -- nothing else. My daughter only has her first initial on hers... Her choice. It's perfect!
Names are a BAD idea.
LBC

2 moms found this helpful

I never put my son's name on anything in a location that others could see.
Little ones, we teach them not to go with strangers. But when a stranger calls them by name (which they read off their shirt/backpack/etc) that stranger doesn't seem strange anymore. After all, to a little one, if someone knows their name they must not be a stranger.

So, to me, ixnay on the namay.

2 moms found this helpful

I do it! My kids go to school with over 600 kids and it is easy to grab the wrong bag. Honestly, I pick them up and take them 95% of the time, and if they ride the bus they get dropped at my street and walk right into my yard 20 foot away.

2 moms found this helpful

I wouldn't do it. Initials are probably okay, but I don't do those either.

2 moms found this helpful

I am a big advocate for putting the name on the inside of the bag. I was a bit perturbed to see that someone at school had written my daughter's name on the outside (handle) of her bag. I am sure they did it so that it would be easy to grab it out of the big heap of them at the end of the day but still a bit annoying.

My MIL did get my kids really cute personalized back packs but they don't go to school with them. We use them for times when I am with them or they are going directly into the care of another - ie dance class, babysitter, church nursery, etc.

2 moms found this helpful

I used a monogram. No names.

2 moms found this helpful

That would be a no for me. I don't want any stranger to be able to call my child by name. Could you do an initial(s) or a picture instead?

2 moms found this helpful

Wow....I have an almost two yr. old so I guess I haven't thought of this yet. Glad you posted! I had heard that it's a bad idea to put those bumper stickers with your child's sport and name on your car so this too makes alot of sense. I guess you can never be too careful.

2 moms found this helpful

No names! My kids names are inside true back packs and if they tell me someone else has a bookbag like theirs then I buy em a key chain to put on the zipper so they can quickly identify theirs

2 moms found this helpful

If they can put it on the BACK which is against the child's back and can't be seen by strangers, then yes. Otherwise, no.

2 moms found this helpful

Hi M., I have a class called SuperKidPower I've been teaching since 1982! So, your question caught my eye. I wanted to see the responses & most are right on ( yeah!). Along with no name on bag, that goes for name bracelets & necklaces. Also, in my opinion, no initials. I've worked for missing children agencies & a bad guys use any info to lure a child. Yelling out J.T. could stop a child for that split second & hesitate. I teach my kids "personal safety lifeskills" for 11 to 14yr olds. It's my favorite age! These kids are in that in between age where parents are not with them and their not driving yet (that's a whole different bunch of lifeskills) or home alone. Knowledge is power, and in this changing world they want to know what to do. Hope that helps! Best, C.

2 moms found this helpful

It's another step to protecting our children...Names go on the inside of their items or I place a ribbon or tag (lack of name) on the outside of whatever it is I need them to identify that it is theirs & not someone elses.Bad idea on my point of view,I like to teach my kids to identify what is theirs know where they put it regardless if it's school or not it's bound to happen that there can be 2-3 back packs of the same color or character but place it where your name is in your classroom.And of course mom is here if it gets taken by mistake i'll track it down

1 mom found this helpful

I would just go with the initials.

1 mom found this helpful

It's generally a no-no, as you said for the reasons detailed in other posts.
However, I think you need to use situational common sense. My son cannot be taken out of school, unless the person is on his "list" and shows ID. He also walk about a half block from his bus stop to our home while he is watched by myself or my husband, so although I understand the 'logic' it's not really very relevant to us right now.

1 mom found this helpful

I write the name on the inside or on the back underside of the strap. No names on tshirts either, or lunchboxes.

1 mom found this helpful

I put the kids names on the inside of their stuff. Inside their underwear, shoes, on the tags of their clothes, etc...it's no one's business what their name is by looking at them.

my kiddos have the LL Bean backpacks with the their names embroidered, BUT my kids don't walk to or from school, they are driven(by me) to and from the front steps of the school, and when we travel by plane, they have character backpacks without their names that they carry.

NO, very unsafe. Only thing acceptable is initials or better yet, a piece of clipart which Lands End used to do.

Kind of confused why people think noone can know their child's name, to tell the truth. Do you never say "John! Come here RIGHT NOW" in a store? Do you think when kids are walking home that someone is not saying "Sally! Sally! Wait for me!"? Another thing: "bad guys" often hang out where people are playing (sports fields, playgrounds, etc) and they pick up on names there too. Instead of trying (and failing) to hide someone's name, I would suggest different tactics that could hold more weight when you're not around. When I was very young, we lived in Houston and there were some scary incidents. My mom taught me that the ONLY people I could EVER ride home with---or even APPROACH the car---would be mom and dad. Anyone else would have to have our secret family password, and that whoever she gave that password to would know NOT to approach me or get too close to me, but to say what they were supposed to say from a safe distance. One time I was sitting outside school on the corner, waiting for mom. She wasn't there, but there was a white car that looked familiar. She honked the horn, but I didn't budge. She honked again, I didn't move. She rolled down her window and called my name---oh, it was my aunt. But, she needs to say the secret password BECAUSE mom didn't tell me that my aunt was picking me up. I didn't go near, I had to say loudly "You need the password, go call mom". My aunt drove to the payphone at the school and had to call mom who was working late, and ask for the password, then come back and say from the car what it was. I think mom told her not to fuss at me, but I could tell she seemed a little put out, but I got LOTS of praise when I got home....and the new password, lol. Never came up again, so my brother and I still remember it, but didn't have to use it. Teach your children that if they are walking home from school, they need to walk HOME from SCHOOL, not get in the car, even if it is someone they know. So many people have cellphones (including kids) that I don't see this being hard. If they're too young to have a controlled cellphone, then they may be too young to be alone. If another option comes up, they need to phone and ask first. I grew up knowing that if I called, I would probably be rewarded with whatever I wanted to do, but there would be hell to pay if I didn't call and my "plan" changed and I wasn't where I was supposed to be. Teach your children to have confidence, be observant, do some people watching with them and talk about what they see to you. Train them on instincts and let them practice with you. Teach them your safety rules and "test" them when they aren't aware on those rules. Someone told me I shouldn't put those family stickers (the mom, dad, 2 boys, cat) on my car because you don't want people to know you have a little child. I was like right.....like walking past the car and seeing the 2 carseats won't tip them off? Don't get me wrong, my son's bag isn't embroidered. But it isn't because someone can kidnap him by knowing their name (I've told him as much as I talk to him and his brother, and as many activities they're in, the whole world should know his name by now, so that means NOTHING)....it's because his Spiderman backpack doesn't really have a place to do it, I'm too cheap to have it done and I certainly am not going to pick up a needle and thread, and if it is in good shape it'll probably be handed down to his little brother when he gets on his next kick (Star Wars next? Who knows...). We do the hard cover luggage tags that I inserted the emergency / ID cards downloaded from the Red Cross website in there (His name, parent's names and cell numbers, work number, doctor's name and number, allergies, and 2 emergency contacts are all on that folding card. But from the outside, it's just a bright green square).

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