Thursday, November 14, 2013
Save the Dry Erase Markers!
At my school, we don't have blackboards and instead we have white/dry-erase boards. When I first came to this school over five years ago I was really excited about this fact because in public school I had blackboards that I had a real love-hate feeling toward for all of the reasons you might imagine if you have any experience dealing with blackboards. Still, having white/dry-erase boards wasn't nearly as awesome as I thought it would be. They soon became just as annoying to me as the blackboards were but just in different ways.
(Now, I understand this is totally a "first world problem" that I am referencing but just please bear with me.)
One of my biggest issues with having a whiteboard in class is the marker issue. Markers go missing all the time but if they aren't missing, we have issues with them because the ink seems to run out very quickly. For this reason, I barely use my whiteboard and I'm almost always fussing about not being able to actually use it.
All of this in mind, a week or so ago, I started noticing that even though I wasn't using my board, the markers would always be arranged and positioned the way they are pictured above. While it seemed a little strange that they were like that (and seemed to always be put back to be like that), I didn't think much of it and I wouldn't disturb them either. Then the other day, I found the individual who was putting them like that! It was a STUDENT ARTIST!!! And almost every day, if the markers weren't like that, he would arrange and position them like that. While in the midst of him doing it, I commented and laughed and said, "Oh YOU'RE the one who is doing that! I was wondering what was going on!" The student artist, who is actually also one of our star football players and who is a really big and burly guy and sits very close to my teaching station in the front of the room, smiled sheepishly and said, "Yeah... it's me." And then I asked him why he was doing it and he said, "Well... Mr. *so-and-so* does it all the time and it makes a big difference and makes it so the markers always have ink. It really does make a difference so I was trying to help you to have markers that wouldn't be so hard to use."
I gotta tell you - when he said this and said why he was doing it? It just about made my whole month and I feel like it's one of the nicest things any student has ever done for me - however small it might seem because it makes such a big difference. And OF COURSE it works, y'know? Because it helps to keep the ink flowing toward the writing tip vs. having it settle in the middle of the marker. Why didn't I think of that?
Anyway, surely you all have been doing this and I am the only one not doing this but I just wanted to share this little "feel good" anecdote because this kind of stuff is always nice to hear about in my book.