Yes, it’s really true: I believe that the Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener is the only one you’ll ever need, whether you’re looking for one to use in your homeschool or your classroom! Classroom Friendly Supplies very kindly sent me and Jackson a Cool Blue Classroom Friendly Sharpener to use and review in our homeschool. I can only say, “Where has this sharpener been all my life??”
Why we needed the Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener:
We don’t use pencils for every single thing we do in homeschool. But we DO use them for math, for journaling, for art, for nature drawing, and for handwriting. I personally use one for lesson planning. And as many people do, we prefer a nice sharp point on our pencils for writing or drawing. However, that became a point of frustration over the years. We have used a battery-operated electric sharpener….that died. We have found manual sharpeners that really worked well….until they didn’t when the sharpener’s blade dulled. Then we’d end up with pencil lead that would *almost* be perfectly sharp. The, the nice tip would break off in the sharpener and we’d have nothing but a pencil that needed sharpening again.
This was so frustrating for both me and my son. Finally in desperation, I switched to a mechanical pencil. But that didn’t take care of the problem for Jackson, or for me when I wanted to journal or create art using colored pencils. Then we just ended up with a bunch of nubs.
So, you can imagine how thrilled I was to receive this sharpener to use. As you can see, we received the Cool Blue sharpener, although It’s available in a variety of colors (blue, green, purple, red, pink, black). It’s made of metal, with a few plastic pieces. It also comes with a clamp for affixing the sharpener to a countertop or bookcase, but it’s stable enough without the clamp, and we never needed to use it. It’s very sturdy and has a good weight, but it’s not overly heavy.
It doesn’t work exactly like the pencil sharpeners you might remember from your own elementary classroom. However, it’s actually quite simple to use and operate for both children and adults. You can see a video or directions on how to use the Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener at the company website. But I’ll describe them for you here as well!
First: Pull the silver portion straight out into a locking position.
Second: Push the two black square knobs together and insert pencil fully into the sharpener. Release the knobs.
Third: Hold the top of the sharpener lightly but firmly and turn the handle clockwise. In just a few turns, the pencil will be sharpened.
Fourth: Pinch the two knobs together to release the pencil.
Finally: Ta-da! A gorgeously-sharpened pencil!
How we used it
I mentioned above how many ways we use pencils in our homeschool. So, Jackson used the Classroom Friendly Sharpener for his pencil school needs. You can see his hand in the pictures above in my step-by-step directions.
I also teach an art class in our homeschool coop. For an upcoming project, we’ll be using watercolor pencils. I have a large supply of those, but about half of them were worn down to nubs from use over time. I wanted my students to have sharpened pencils to work with, but I didn’t want to take the pencils to class unsharpened. The pencils needed to be ready to go! So I used our Classroom Friendly Sharpener, and in about 5 minutes, sharpened this huge bunch.
I probably could have sharpened them a bit more quickly, but twice I had to fix a tiny issue. With two of my pencils, a small amount of lead broke off inside the sharpener’s blades. However, the Classroom Friendly Supplies website has a Help Portal which has instructions for fixing small issues. By watching their video and reading some instructions, I was able to take the sharpener apart, find the broken lead, and get it out using a toothpick. Voila! The issue was addressed and the sharpener was back to work!
I should tell you that I sharpened 23 watercolor pencils in a row before that happened. 🙂
I LOVE this sharpener. It is so easy to use, it sharpens pencils quite incredibly, and problems are easy to troubleshoot and fix. It is attractive and I don’t mind having it out in our homeschool study area. I also really appreciate not having to hunt down the tiny manual sharpeners that we’ve been using!
One does have to apply pressure while turning the handle and sharpening, but it’s not an inordinate amount. As I said, I sharpened pencils for 5 minutes and only at the end did my arm start to tire.
The Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener met a definite need in our homeschool….and removed a consistent source of frustration. I love knowing that sharpening broken or dull pencils will never be a problem for us again, either in our home studies or for my art class. I recommend it wholeheartedly to you!
You may purchase the Classroom Friendly Pencil Sharpener at Classroom Friendly Supplies. I’d love for you to visit their website or their social media sites to see more about the only sharpener you’ll ever need!
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