Attaching Labels to Book Bins

Today was very hot. And humid. But I dragged my poor sister to my classroom anyhow (thank you Melissa!!!). She worked the contact paper, I worked on my library.

My Library: The Never-Ending Project

Perhaps that would have been a more appropriate title for this post. But I really do think I finally, FINALLY have it the way I like it. And the way that will work best for my students.

I reconfigured some of my genres, got rid of the leveled section (I was never a huge fan of that to begin with, but we had received a leveled library), and put all of those books in with the other genres/subjects.

In my new, beautiful bins...
...they are the stacking bins from Really Good Stuff (the green link will take you to the exact kind) and they hold a nice amount of books. And they match all the rest of my decor, which makes my organizational heart happy :)

Now that I've had a chance to extol (extoll?) about my bins, I wanted to share a little tip on attaching labels because this is something I've been emailed a lot about in the past.

I always print my labels on cardstock, then laminate them for durability (plus it makes them bright and shiny).
Then, I use hot glue to attach them. 

I think I have it down to a science (after a series of burnings...turns out shorts and hot glue aren't always the best combination).

I put a bit of glue at the top, center part of the bin (where the top of the label will be attached):
I attach the top of the label and let it adhere for a bit (please ignore my ugly hands/nails, I promised them a manicure when all this setup is over):
Once the label is on the bin pretty well, I carefully lift it up and put glue along the right, left, center, and bottom parts of where the label will be:
Then I smooth it down and voila!
Not too bad! Today I would glue the tops of six labels at a time, let them cool, then go back and glue them completely down. I was like a hot-gluing machine!

How do you like to attach your organizational labels? Do you have tips to share with us? I would love to hear them!

50 comments

  1. Love these. They look so good! :) I need to redo my library labels...ugh what a task!

    Nicki
    Mrs. Thigpen's Kindergarten

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  2. Great idea Kristen! Thanks for sharing! I love all your bright colors. It makes the labels really pop.

    Swimming into Second

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  3. Love your labels. I have lots of the same colors in my room. I need to get some of these bins for my library. I still don't have mine the way I want it. Thanks for the inspiration.

    Dare to be Different - Teach!

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  4. I love your labels too and I have been reconsidering my library. Just this past year I made it into a leveled library but I'm not sure if this is the best way to organize. My non fiction bins are all in one big bin so that is definitely a task I need to orgnize.

    Heidi
    Secondgradealicious!

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  5. Great idea!! I've always used tape and had to redo them several times during the year. Looks like I will be hot gluing this year!

    Twins, Teaching and Tacos

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  7. Sticky dots from the scrapbooking section. I'm not quick enough for hot glue, I guess! :)

    Diane
    Fifth in the Middle

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  8. I had just printed out some labels and was debating how I was going to attach them. Now I know what to do...thanks!

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  9. Thanks for sharing! When I get new bins I'll have to try this! Hot glue guns and I aren't friends either...I constantly burn myself and everyone at work now tells me I'm not allowed to use them lol

    Justina
    The Very Busy Resource Teacher

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  10. Your bins and labels look great! My book bins have small openings on all four sides (basically holes). After I laminate and cut the label out, I punch one hole on each side and tie it to the book bin using ribbon (and a double knot).

    Your cutting skills are amazing! I am terrible with cutting out circles and ovals. Nice job!!!

    Aimee
    Primarily Speaking

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  11. Love, love, love, those labels! I have always used thick clear tape, but I'll have to hot glue 'em next time!

    BTW...What are you and the Sis doing in the classroom on a hot, humid day?? You work too hard! GO get some "me time"! It's SUMMER!!!

    Lizzy from *The Teacher Chick*

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  12. Thanks for sharing. I just bought the sticker maker that someone was bragging about. I hope that makes my labels look good and stick well, Heather
    P.S. I use glue guns for everything. Our walls are made of cinder blocks!

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  13. I love these labels, Kristen! Are these in your TPT store? I would love to purchase a set (potentially without the numbers), but regardless they are fabulous! :)

    Catherine
    The Brown-Bag Teacher

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    1. Thanks so much Catherine! I am working on them for the store right now. Thanks for telling me the number thing, I will be sure to make a set without in that case :)

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    2. Yay, yay, yay! Thank you so much. I cannot wait-eeekk! :) -C

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    3. I love them, too! I've never used numbers, but I think I might embrace them if available.

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  14. Love them! Such a great idea, I never thought using the hot glue gun!
    Rebecca

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  15. So bright and cheerful! I hope we get to see a picture of your whole library set-up and lay-out!
    Alison
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'

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  16. I love the idea of numbering the pins as well as labeling them for content. Thanks, because I was wondering how you got those pretty labels on the containers!

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  17. The bins I use have holes in them, so I use packing tape to secure them.

    EmilyK

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  18. I wish I could use hot glue, but it does not stick in my classroom!! I tried sticking my laminated tags to my really good stuff baskets and they fell off a week later!! I tried using really sticky velcro, which didn't work either!! I'm stuck with using rings, which isn't preferable, but at least it works for now! Yours labels look great!!

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  19. I love those bins!! I just ordered a ton for my classroom and they are hiding in a closet at school so my husband doesn't see them! ;-) I can't wait to put your hot glue trick to work!

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  20. Hot glue! That's great. I usually "borrow" book binding tape from the school library. You can see my ugly labels here: Ugly Classroom Labels

    Thanks for your great ideas!
    Kristy @ 2 Peas and a Dog Teaching Blog

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  21. My big summer project is organizing my classroom library the way I want it. I was planning on getting baskets from Really Good Stuff- do you recommend the bins instead? Love your labels and your blog.

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    1. Hi Sandi! Oh my goodness, I went back and forth over these forever!! I've honestly heard great things about all of the baskets. I got the stacking bins because they have that smooth surface that I thought would look nice with a large label, whereas some of the other basket have those ridgier surfaces. It ended up working out well because, facing the long way like that, they can hold most of the larger picture books and chapter books can go in two rows side by side.

      So I would recommend them if you were looking for a similar look and use...otherwise I would say many teachers have told me wonderful things about the other baskets. Did that help or confuse? lol! I hope it helped! :)

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  22. Thank you for your quick response. It helped a lot. The ironic thing is I'm thinking of going clear (which you just changed from)because I have so much color in my room already. Anyway, thanks for your help.

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    Replies
    1. I'm glad I could help! I have always loved the clear bins, I just needed a change after having them always. They will look lovely in your library, I"m sure :)

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  23. Are you going to make the labels a download? I have become a little obsessed with your files :)

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  24. These are absolutely fabulous! Can't wait to purchase them! It never ceases to amaze me at the talent that many teachers have. I can't wait to purchase these, and I LOVE the numbered bins. One quick number in the book and the kids can put the books back in the RIGHT place! YEA!! Going out to stock up on colored printer ink today!

    Thank you for sharing all your creativity!

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  25. Hot glue is my secret weapon. I turned my whole school onto it! The janitors don't like me very much but it works on EVERYTHING!!!

    I love these book bin labels and book bins! You are smart not to have the ones with the holes. I don't know of any way to keep labels on those!

    Young Teacher Love Blog

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  26. I have never tried hot glue. Don't the kids pull the labels,etc, off?
    Em
    http://loveluckandlaughter.blogspot.com/

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  27. I would totally buy these labels too! They are adorable! I like the idea of numbering bins too, bit with my ginormous library, it might get too confusing for kids.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks so much!! They will be in the store tomorrow morning if you are interested :) :)

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  28. I too love the library labels. I was wondering if you have similar ones that go by series...such as Junie B, Captain Underpants, Magic Tree House, etc.? I am looking forward to seeing these in your store tomorrow.

    Evelyn

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    1. Hi Evelyn, thank you!! I put the first genre set in the store. You know what? I would love the challenge of making them for series. What other kinds of series books do you have? I'm not sure if I could so this is not a definite, but I would like to try :)

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  29. I always use tape cause I am afraid the hot glue will melt the bin, but this year I am going to try it! Just as soon as I buy these labels... hint, hint. Ha ha, no pressure, they are just exactly what I am looking for.
    Mels

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  30. Those look fantastic! I'm not at all surprised at how amazing they look with your new bins. You've inspired me to redo my baskets. I currently have them by genre/level but I don't really like them grouped by level. Looks like I'll be spending some time in my classroom next week ;)

    Elizabeth
    Fun in Room 4B

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  31. You are fabulous!!!
    What kind of shelves do you have your library books on? I am searching for the right thing.
    Thanks!!

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  32. These look fantastic. I will be buying these as soon as they go into your store. LOVE them!

    Jeannie
    The 2nd Grade Surprise

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  33. I am so jealous of your beautiful labels! I've been desperately thinking of how to do a similar version to match my theme but don't think they'd attach to my baskets :( You are so talented though. Thank you for all the ongoing inspiration!

    Claire
    Sorry About The Mess But...

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  34. How many of the bins can you fit side ways on the shelf? I have baskets in the same color scheme from really good stuff, but they have the holes in them...maybe I need to buy these bins:):)

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    1. Hey Alisha!!! I hope you are having a nice summer :)

      I fit two side-by-side on a shelf. I think they are about 14" wide facing that way, if I remember correctly.

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    2. I may just have to buy the bins..now what to do with all of the baskets!!:)

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  35. Which laminator do you use? I've been eyeing this one for years at my local Costco but haven't bit the bullet yet... http://www.amazon.com/Purple-Cows-Laminator-Includes-3016c/dp/B005FVNH68/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1373849295&sr=8-5&keywords=laminator

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    Replies
    1. Mine is soooo old I don't think they make it anymore! It's a Duck Brand one and it was only about $25 at Walmart, if I remember correctly. It was such a good investment though. I've had it for about 9 years and it has helped me prep so many things at home :)

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  36. Such a great way to organize your library! I'm still looking to find that PERFECT method for organizing mine...just so many books and deciding how to put them is tiring. But this post gives me great hopes for this year :) thanks for sharing!

    Kelly

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  37. Miss Kristen! I love love love these labels but am trying to figure out if the ones in the pictures are the same as in this set: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Genre-Library-Labels-Consistent-Colors-769423 <-- I'm teaching a load of science this year and I can see some of your labels match up PERFECTLY with some topics I already have books for from the prior teacher.

    Thank you so very much!!!

    Sara
    Miss V's Busy Bees
    ventrellasara@gmail.com

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  38. I am OBSESSED with these labels, but I have these Really Good Stuff book bins: http://www.reallygoodstuff.com/picture-book-classroom-library-bins-neon/p/159611/
    with the slide-in label holder. I think that your labels are too big. BOO! Any chance you'd resize them to fit those bins?? ;)

    Nicole
    Teaching's a Hoot!

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    1. Thanks so much Nicole!! :) They have two sizes, the smaller size is 2.8” x 4” which would fit the length of the tag area on the bin, but would hang off of the ledge a little bit. Would that be ok? Here's one of the sets with the two sizes I have in store:

      http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Genre-Library-Labels-Consistent-Colors-769423

      Thanks again for the kind words!!

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  39. Hello! I love these labels! I purchased your "Editable for Numbering Library Labels" (http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Editable-for-Numbering-Genre-Library-Labels-Consistent-Colors-777894) and they are perfect! In this post I see you have other labels that are more specific, like the ecosystems, natural disasters, etc. How can I purchase these as well? Thanks :)

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