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Opinion: Pencil Sharpening Dilemma
Old 03-23-2009, 09:51 AM
 
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I was wondering if Erasable Pens can be used in Kindergarten to solve the pencil sharpening dilemma? Some pencils do not sharpen well, and electric sharpeners are noisy and break down. I tried erasable pens in Third grade with success. I'm thinking about using them in Kindergarten. Opinions please.


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yeahimcrazy yeahimcrazy is offline
 
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My opinion
Old 03-23-2009, 10:45 AM
 
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I would think no. I don't think pens, even erasable ones, are appropriate for kinders. You'd also be setting a bad precedent for future teachers who may not like students to use pens (I only allowed pens when I taught 7th grade and up - I do not allow even my 5th graders to write with pens).

Some suggestions to make things easier for you:

Buy only good quality pencils. The really inexpensive pencils are more likely to break often, don't sharpen well, and will drive you crazy.

Don't let your kinders sharpen their own pencils. Have a pencil "bank". You sharpen all of the pencils in the room, either at the end of the day or in the morning. Have several (and with kinders, I mean several pencils for each child. If it breaks, the child just takes another from the bank.

If you can get a good quality manual pencil sharpener - jump at the chance. I agree that electric pencil sharpeners are noisy and break down. If you must use an electric sharpener, at least since you're the one doing the sharpening, and all at the same time rather than 50 or 60 times a day, it won't break down as often and you won't hear that annoying WWHHHHRRRRRRRRR! all day long.
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Option
Old 03-23-2009, 10:56 AM
 
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I use to purchase a new electric pencil sharpener every year for students who visited my library. Unfortunately, teachers would send one student with a dozen pencils and burn out the sharpener, or one student would sharpen one pencil for ten minutes and burn out the sharpener. Now? I have hand held cheap sharpeners. I'm sorry. I'm tired of providing for students who don't take care of what I have.
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Old 03-23-2009, 12:14 PM
 
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I would worry about pen marks on skin and clothes. I do what yeahimcrazy said. I have a pencil container with a happy face and a pencil container with a frowny face. I keep about 40 pencils in the happy face container at any given time. These are in addition to the pencils at the student tables. I went through 3 pencil sharpeners this year before I finally found one that will sharpen pencils consistently. It is a manual one by EXPO brand. It can attach to any surface with a little suction thing. It is less than ten dollars at Wal-mart.

Oh, and I NEVER let the kinders sharpen their own pencils.

Good luck!
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my 2 cents worth
Old 03-23-2009, 01:40 PM
 
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In our district, using pens are reserved for the upper grades and is a big deal, something that the children "earn" the right to do by having good penmanship and grades (not a lot of errors to erase).

Good quality pencils are a must. I have always used the pencil bank system: break a tip, trade it in.

I have had pencil sharpener as a "job helper" position. One child gets the responsibility to use my heavy duty electric sharpener under my supervision. Pencils are sharpened during "job time" only.

I found out that pencils with the plastic coated decorative covers (often sold in the bookstore or book fairs) will jam up the works & are not allowed in my sharpener.

I have had students put fingers into the individual hand held jobbers & the wall or table top models (little kids, little fingers + big curiosity = big boo-boo), so they are not allowed to use them without supervision.


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