I HATE pencils.
Really. But pens aren't always practical.
Sometimes I think to myself that I should quit my job and invent a pencil that doesn't require sharpening, and then I remember that mechanical pencils are a thing.
Sigh. I guess I'll stick with my day job.
Honestly, though, where do all of the pencils go?
Are they hoarding them in desks and backpacks?
Do they take them home and display them in their bedrooms?
Do we have a pencil monster that's best friends with the eraser monster?
Why do they tear them up intentionally?
Do they EAT them?
I don't get it.
It's a little infuriating.
So I decided I was going to set a great example for my students by not sharing my pencils. (sarcasm)
I had seen multiple ideas on Pinterest about how to make sure teacher pencils are clearly marked.
I picked my favorite method, opened a brand new box, and sharpened those babies.
Then I wrapped them with my favorite washi tape so that they became easily identifiable as MINE.
The kids picked up on the pencil rules quickly:
Pencils stay at the teacher table.
Pencils are only used while working at the teacher table.
Pencils are not put in mouths or ears or noses or other questionable places.
Pencil erasers should not be subject to a premature death by scissors.
They even added their own rules like ask the teacher nicely before you use one of her pencils or else she will get you.
I think they were even a little afraid of my pencils, so they started bringing their own pencils to my small group table.
It worked like a charm.
Eight whole glorious weeks went by and all of MY pencils stayed in MY caddy.
The erasers were used appropriately and only when necessary.
I never witnessed any bite marks or slobber or bodily fluids on my pencils.
I haven't even had to resharpen them yet - not once!
All was well and I was a happy teacher...
Ahem. Today I was on an interview panel that met with a few prospective new employees.
The interviewee was in the middle of explaining what STEM meant to her when I glanced over and noticed that one of my administrators was taking notes WITH ONE OF MY PENCILS, clearly marked with teal washi tape meaning that it is not to leave the teacher table or else.
I kid you not.
The mystery is solved.
I should probably apologize to my students for blaming them.
I guess they don't eat them after all.
Now I know where all the pencils go.