I hate pencils because they have to be sharpened. HATE them!! I have tried a million different things. I pre sharpen pencils. I have asked my students to bring their own sharp pencil to art class. I have tried to cut them out and only use markers and crayons as much as possible. But there is no getting around it, pencils have to be used in the art room. I saw a post of the Art Teachers Facebook Page saying that this was the best pencil sharpener ever... so here goes experiment number 1039...
This is the Classroom Pencil Sharpener from FriendlySupplies.com, I bought a 3 pack and place them in 3 different places in my art room to try to spread out the sharpening lines. These sharpeners came with a clamp that allows them to be temporarily fixed to a table but I found that it was better to screw them into the counter tops. My favorite handyman (my husband) discovered that there is a plate in the bottom that can be removed, so the screws aren't even seen. The plate is replaced and the sharpener is very secure.
I thought I would give my students instruction before letting them use my new favorite tool. There is a different design to these so I thought it would be best to do a little, flipped instruction lesson. It was so funny (but totally expected) to hear them Oooo and Awe over the possibilities of this pencil sharpener.
One thing that I thought I would do is a little experiment on these pencil sharpeners. I'm going to allow one of them to be used for colored pencils. It's an art teacher myth that colored pencils ruin pencil sharpeners. All of these are new at the same time so we'll see if the waxiness of the colored pencil let dulls the sharpener faster. The GREAT thing with these sharpeners is, if it does, you can purchase a replacement blade for your sharpener. These bases (the pink part) are made of a high-quality metal so I can see them lasting for years.
After setting this up for the first day, I happened to go upstairs to our media center and noticed a huge box of unsharpened pencils. I asked if I could have them for the week and this has allowed many of my student to give the sharpener a try... and everyone wants a try.
On the Classroom Friendly Supply site, They also have a print out of how to use the pencil sharpener. I was sure to post this by every pencil sharpener because I share this room with Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, Community Education, Church groups... well you get the picture. So the stuff I purchase for the classroom is often used by the community. This was a great solution to assure good communication of expectations.
I'll be sure to revisit this in a couple of months to report how it is going in my classroom. We'll see if this is the answer to all my pencil problems.