TO ENTER!========>We are looking for great pencil-related quotations. Please leave your pencil-related quotation (and source if you know it; or make up a memorable one!) in a comment to this post, and head on over to “like” Classroom Friendly Supplies. (Only comments with a pencil quotation will be entered into the drawing.) One entry per Comrade.
The contest will close on Friday, May 3rd, at 5:00pm Eastern Standard Time. We will randomly select a winner over the weekend though paper entries in a hat (you’ll have to trust the randomness, but I’ll get a 3-year who is impartial to pull the winner). The winner will be posted on Monday, May 6th on this site.
I expect that we’ll get some very cool entries, and we’ll post some of the best on the site in the coming weeks.
Don’t trade in your pencils and paper for a keyboard just yet.
A new study that compared the different brain processes used for writing by hand and typing has found that there are cognitive benefits to putting a pen to paper. These findings give support to the continued teaching of penmanship and handwriting in schools.
Children who don’t learn the skill of handwriting, like generations before them had to, may be missing out on an important developmental process. Compared to using two hands to type out letters on a keyboard, writing with one hand uses more complex brain power.
This is another post from the Enoch Pratt library, the public library system in our Home Base of Baltimore (HON!). Pencils seem to mix with literature which seems to mix with walking which leads to wandering, and we were wondering, Why not put this on PR for the benefit of Comrades not lucky enough to inhabit Charm City? (there’s far too much coffee and too little punctuation in HQ this weekend, as you can see).
Read the entire article here, written by frequent Pencil Revolution contributor and featured writer, Brian.
A little over two years ago, Field Notes introduced the Steno, a 6×9 stenography pad made with just truly excellent paper (and I should make a dozen of them my birthday present this year, yes). There are hobo symbols on the inside of the heavy cover. I toyed with the idea of hobo symbols for my door, but we lived in an old apartment. Now that we have a house and a door (an old wooden job) of our own, I think I have to get out the chalk.
What’s the symbol for “Pencils and memo pads for helping me vacuum?”
Shoplet, one of the largest online purveyor of office supplies, and Pentel recently sent a package over with a lot of goodies from Pentel, including the EnerGize X mechanical pencil, a graphite companion to the EnerGel pens. I’ve started (Blasphemy?!) a pen blog to review the inky samples we receive. It’s called Fundamental Emanating Pen-itude (with a nod to Plotinus.) Check out the review of the gel pens that go with this pencil.
There is no retractable metal sleeve to protect the lead at the point. One less moving part is not a bad thing; the extended plastic at the point certainly holds the lead — much more than I thought it would. But since it isn’t retractable, it is a little sharp in one’s pocket. The grip is one of my favorite things about this pencil. It is slightly tacky, with a subtle wave pattern. The “frequency” of the ridges and valleys and the material combine for a nice, soft, grippy grip. It’s about as wide as a beginner’s pencil at the grip, and it’s very comfortable.
The click mechanism is solid, and I can’t say much more than that. The eraser sleeps under a plastic cap. In addition to keeping the eraser clean, the cap blends into the style of the pencil. The eraser performed surprisingly well, though I wish it was a little longer and/or that it was extendible, like that on the P-207.
If I have gripes, it’s the unattractive printing on the clip and the fact that they only only ship the pencil with two leads. But this are easily ignored and remedied.
The clip holds paper might more tightly than it looks like it will. It holds well, though it leaves slight marks on, say, the cover of a notebook to which it’s clipped. But I’d rather it actually work than cuddle my field books.
This is a surprisingly pleasant pencil to use, with an excellent grip, and it might replace the Pilot G2 as my favorite very cheap mechanical pencil. While I’m certainly no heavy user of mechanical pencils, I have kept this one in my pencil cup, where there are very few Mechanical Warriors.
During a posting dryspell, in July 2011, we made a trip to Boston (our home from 2001-2003) for a week’s fun. A shop I really like in Cambridge and Boston, Black Ink, featured some interesting pencil gear. They had both flavors of Blackwing in a pot at the counter, for sale as singles. They had the green sharpener we love so much. And they had a steel and glass pencil dispenser full of General’s Test-Scoring pencils. We were packing lightly and had already gone on a bit of a spree at the Shop at Walden Pond (Charlotte’s first visit and all) and at various bookstores. So I thought I’d get them next time.
With moving this summer and the new baby on the way, we haven’t been back to Boston since, and I sort of forgot a bout them. Then, my Valentine’s Day gifts this year included the very cool dispenser and even better: a dozen General’s Test Scoring pencils. (Also another pack of Red Blooded Field Notes.)
You pull up the top, which reminds me of a French press, and the pencils come up. The jar is starting to smell like pencils a little. I’ve switched the pencils it came with for some more…colorful pencils. I was worried it would topple easily, but it’s pretty stable. I keep it on a bookshelf in my dining room, filled and ready for dispensing pencils. It’s become one of those things I like to show off when someone who appreciates pencils and “useful things” comes over. To be sure, an old can would do the same thing, almost. But I’m still pretty enamored of this little dispenser.
The oddly shaped Pencil Nebula (NGC 2736) is pictured in this image from ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile. This nebula is a small part of a huge remnant left over after a supernova explosion that took place about 11 000 years ago. The image was produced by the Wide Field Imager on the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile.The oddly shaped Pencil Nebula (NGC 2736) is pictured in this image from ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile. This nebula is a small part of a huge remnant left over after a supernova explosion that took place about 11 000 years ago. The image was produced by the Wide Field Imager on the MPG/ESO 2.2-metre telescope at ESO’s La Silla Observatory in Chile.
This is an interesting idea from Makekind: stamped carpenters’ pencils. Simply sand off the imprint on an unfinished flat pencil, and then stamp away! (These might make good party favors and/or a party activity if your kids love art supplies like my daughter does.)
But, I wonder — as always with these types of pencils — do they get used? Certainly sketching and calligraphy benefit from flat leads. But do folks generally use carpenters’ pencils on a semi-regular basis, to account for their relative ubiquity?
Okay, I, ahem, forgot to remove the Ikea pencil from my shirt pocket last month when I was picking up a few items. Sure, I had a “better” pencil in my pocket also and didn’t need that Ikea pencil. But my daughter was fascinated by it, and it was good to grip with a squirmy toddler and holiday crowds. I came across a Flickr group today featuring “stolen” Ikea pencils, including one fitted with a ferrule — and is that a Faber-Castell “perfect pencil” cap on there?
Photographer Lisa Cargile sent us a link to her excellent pencil photography project, and we had to share it with our Comrades. These are excellent photos, and I see some rare pencils and some I’ve never seen before. From Ms. Cargile:
“I’m a corporate employee by day and a photographer by night ;-) The pencil project is just something that I started last year. It started out to be a ’365 project’ but life happens and I didn’t make it the entire year. Jan 1st I started the pencil project again so I’m posting those on my Facebook page. Anyways …glad I came across your site.”