I think pencils are the bane of my teaching existence.
-I don't even want to think about the number of hours I've spent in my (comparatively) short lifetime sharpening pencils.
-Schools are rarely equipped with quality pencil sharpeners. Annoying. My most favorite pencil sharpener is this beauty, which I had at my last school (side-note: was my favorite teaching year. I'm not saying it was because of this sharpener, but now that I look back, maybe it had something to do with it.). And guess how much it is? More than a massage at a nice spa/low-end Tiffany's necklace/a reasonably-priced pair of boots. Ridiculous.
-My pencil rules are the following:
*Kids don't use the sharpener.
*Sharpener isn't even out where they can reach it.
*It's hidden in the cupboard and I only bring it out before/after school hours.
(Want to know why? Pencil sharpeners are LOUD. You know what's even louder? 25+ children. You know what drives me absolutely insane? 25+ children AND a very loud pencil sharpener.)
-Some common pencil (and eraser) conversations:
*You broke your pencil? No, I will not sharpen it for you. That's why I put out five extra pencils at your table.
*You broke all of the pencils at your table? Not my problem - go find another one.
*ALL of the pencils are broken? Share with a friend. (I then sharpen during the next break. Sometimes.)
*Don't put the pencil in your mouth.
*You chewed off the eraser? That's why I put the big eraser in your pencil cup.
*You poked holes in the big eraser? Not my problem - guess it won't work as well.
*You tore up the eraser into pieces? Guess you get to share it more!
*You put the eraser down your pants? That's gross. I'm still not giving you a new one.
*Don't put the eraser in your mouth.
-The above being said, I think that the pencils (and erasers) that children use are one of the dirtiest things on this planet.
-Also, their claim is true: Ticonderoga pencils are the best, at least when it comes to the wooden pencil variety.
6 days ago