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Eraser Hack for Cap Erasers

This brilliant eraser hack for cap erasers will change the lives of teachers and students everywhere! Maybe I’m being a little melodramatic, but seriously, if you’ve ever taught first grade, you know what I’m talking about! Students, especially the younger ones, erase and erase and erase. They will wear the eraser off a new pencil immediately. This hack will make your cap erasers work better and last longer.

Pencils with colorful cap erasers that have been hacked.

The Problem with Erasers…

Young students eat erasers. Sometimes literally, but always figuratively. The eraser will be worn off a pencil before it’s newly sharpened lead. Cap erasers like these are an easy, inexpensive solution.

But cap erasers have problems of their own. Like this…

Cap eraser bending with use.
cap eraser bends
Cap eraser cracking when someone tries to use it.
cap eraser cracks

The Solution to the Cap Eraser Problems…

After 29 years of teaching, I finally figured out how to solve the problem of cap erasers. It’s so simple, you won’t believe it!

Eraser hack for cap erasers: Cut the tip off!

Scissors snipping the tip off of a pink cap eraser.
That’s it! Just cut the tip off!
A pink cap eraser with the tip cut off.
A pencil erasing with a hacked cap eraser.
This creates a flat surface so when students erase it doesn’t wobble, bend and crack.
Pencils with white cap erasers in a colorful pocket.
Here are the pencils in my EIP cart that I take from room to room. See how the erasers are rounding at the top from use? No wobbling, no bending, no cracking. It’s like a miracle!
Two pencils after the eraser was hacked.
Beautiful!

Happy erasing!

Click here to read more posts by Julie Alderson Foster.

Anyone have any other hacks to share? Add them to the comments below:)

Get Organized!

Teacher Organization

How many of you have a New Year’s Resolution to get organized? I know, there are a million things to organize. Where to start? Start by organizing your passwords. If you’re like me you have dozens of usernames and passwords that you use at school. Keeping them all in one place cuts down on wasted time and frustration.

Usernames and Passwords

Use this Freebie to organize your usernames and passwords.

Click the image to download your Freebie!

You might also like to organize your Word Wall with my color-coded word wall words. Check them out here! You can read more about how to manage an effective word wall here. See another blog post about organization here.

Summertime is organization time

5 Teacher Organizational Tips For Summer

Back To School is less than a month away for most of us!  Here are some things you can do now to make 2019 BTS the best yet!

1. Organize your login/password info. for the million and one websites you use every day during the school year.

I use a manila folder to keep mine handy and organized.  I just write directly onto the folder and keep it in a drawer.  For those that I need a LOT like GoNoodle, United Streaming, etc. I make a little cheat sheet and keep it near my computer.  Click below to download a free template for logins and passwords.password sheets freebie

2. Organize your flash drives and/or Onedrive.

I recently found a great sale at Office Depot on 128GB flash drives for $19.99!   I was able to organize my school and home life in one afternoon!

If you have powerpoints or flipcharts that you use frequently; it’s a good idea to put them onto a flash drive that you keep in or near your computer at school.  Onedrive is awesome for keeping things safe and clutterfree but you know on the day of your “big” evaluation; the school wifi will go down for 15 minutes and you won’t be able to get to that great powerpoint or flipchart you had planned to use during your lesson.

My friend, Bernie, a fellow EIP teacher travels from classroom to classroom so she keeps a flashdrive with all her stuff on a keyfob in her pocket.  She always has what she needs right at the tip of her fingers!

3.  Organize papers.

Your paper needs will depend on what you teach but even in our digital world there is still a need for some paper.  Click here BTS printing checklist freebie for a free checklist of things you might need to print and organize for BTS.  You know the line for the copy machine will be out of control during preplanning and chances are the machine will either break down or run out of toner.  Get ahead of all of that now. If you can get into your school; it’s worth the price of a couple of reams of paper to go use the copier before everyone else does.  If you can’t use the copier at school; consider printing on your printer at home or finding a copy place that gives teacher discounts.

Organizing paper also includes printing, laminating and cutting out stuff you have bought for your classroom.  If you don’t have a way to laminate at least get everything printed and ready for the first day of preplanning.  For example, if you’re committed to using a word wall this year, you will want to get everything printed and cut out and ready because this is the kind of thing that can fall by the wayside once school starts and you have so many things to keep up with.  See my article about Word Walls here.

4.  Organize your personal daily storage.

Lunch bag, book bag, purse, keys, food… If something wasn’t working efficiently last year, now is the time to change it.  Go shopping for a new, more functional item.   I have this rolling bag that I love. Mine is just plain red, I’ve had it 5 or 6 years and it’s still great. Its so easy to pick up by the handles to put it in or take it out of the car and then pull up the long handle to roll.

Think about what irritated you last year and find a better solution.  I was always digging in my purse or bookbag for my car keys or my classroom keys.  So I bought 2 of these heavy duty snap clips and now I clip them to the sides of my purse and I never have a problem finding them.

Are you thinking about food prepping for breakfasts or lunches?  Now is the time to find the containers you want to use and try them out.

5. Organize your storage.

It’s time to make those bucket or crate stools you have pinned 500 pictures of on pinterest.  Just do it!  You will be amazed at how easy it is to organize your manipulatives and other teaching materials.  This is how I organized mine using bucket stools.  I made 6 bucket stools when I taught first grade (one for each math unit and also a good number to go around the reading table)  I printed a label for each bucket (Unit 1: Numbers and Counting, Unit 2:…) Then I stored the manipulatives I needed for each unit inside each bucket.  It worked great!  I knew everything I would need to teach a lesson, do a small group, or set up a center was in the bucket for that unit.  Now I’m an EIP teacher and I go to many different classrooms but I still use my buckets for storage and I can quickly and easily find materials I need to take with me to teach a lesson.

What do you do in the summer to get ready for Back to School?

Share your tips in the comments.

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