~118~ Pencil Sharpener Review

Being that my last post was about my first year teaching, I thought that it would be fitting to do a review on a pencil sharpener that I got for my classroom.
I first discovered this pencil sharpener while looking on Pinterest for ideas to use in my classroom. The blogger posted a video showing how it worked and I knew that I had to check it out.  It’s from Classroom Friendly Supplies, a company run by a fellow teacher.  This handy pencil sharpener comes in various colors, of which I chose this pretty purple. This is not your conventional manual pencil sharpener. The design involved pulling out a metal bracket which adjusts to the size of your pencil and grips it while you’re sharpening it - there’s no need to hold on to your pencil while you’re sharpening it. 
As any teacher knows, a good pencil sharpener is a must in any classroom.  Previous to this one, I had an electric sharper, that while it did a pretty good job, it was extremely loud, often got jammed, and did not work on every type of pencil. 

My sharpener arrived very quickly - so already, I was impressed. I was so excited for it and brought it to my classroom the next day.  The first time I tried it out, I was blown away by how quietly and quickly it sharpened my pencil - 3 turns total.  And the point-oh my goodness! And this was a super sturdy point. I’ve had many pencil sharpeners that make a nice point, but as soon as you start to write, the lead breaks off.  Definitely not the case with this sharpener.  Also, although it works great free-standing, it is easily mounted to any shelf.
My (4th grade) students immediately noticed that our old sharpener was gone and were very excited about our new one.  They loved it so much, that they affectionately named her “Patricia”.  As they started arriving in the morning, I showed them how to properly use the pencil sharpener one at a time.    Some were able to get the hang of it, but many had a hard time with the mechanism of pulling out the  metal part, inserting their pencil, and then getting their pencil out. 

As with almost anything that’s new, my students were a bit too excited about trying out the sharpener and shortly after lunch it got jammed with pencil tip that broke off in the mechanism.  It seems that colored pencils don’t sharpen as well as regular pencils.  Luckily, I was pretty easily able to “perform surgery” on our beloved “Patricia” and get back into tip-top working order.  Sadly though, she is off-limits to students.  However, I still love how well and quickly it sharpens pencils for our classroom! I even brought it down to our building secretary to show her how well it works in case we were in need of buying new sharpeners for the building (which is being expanded and renovated this summer).  She is currently looking into ordering them for our associates to have in their work space.

Final Grade: B+
 This pencil sharpener definitely does it’s job.
The quietness, quickness, and quality of sharpening that it does is top notch and really unmatched by any other pencil sharpener that I’ve used in my lifetime (which is a lot!).  

The reason that it didn’t get an A is because it is not really built to be used by kids. I know that a lot of teachers don’t let their kids use their pencil sharpeners, but it’s one of my classroom jobs so that I’m not spending time doing it each morning/afternoon.  Considering that the 10 year olds in my classroom struggled to figure out how to properly use it (and semi-broke it in a matter of 4 hours), means that there’s no way students in younger grades would be able to use it well, particularly 2nd grade and below. 

Bottom Line: This pencil sharpener is the best I’ve ever used, but in terms of classroom use, it is best for adult use, and isn’t really suitable for kids under 10 years old. 

Disclaimer: I received this pencil sharpener from Classroom Friendly Supplies in exchange for this review.  However, all words, thoughts, and opinions are my own. 

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