March 10, 2010

Maybe they should print that on the box...

The best thing about inheriting a classroom from a veteran teacher is inheriting a lot of stuff left behind.

The worst thing about inheriting a classroom from a veteran teacher is inheriting a lot of stuff left behind...

Having started the school year not knowing how to work an overhead (oh how I miss my SMART board from student teaching...), I very quickly fell in love with transparencies.  Using them, not making them--making them I HATE.  However, I make transparencies of EVERYTHING, and thank goodness the teacher whose room I inherited left a few boxes behind, so I've had plenty to use.  Since I hate making them, one of my biggest reasons for hoping to stay in the same grade next year is to not have to make them ALL again.  Naturally, I keep them all very organized, by subject, in labeled binders.  Well, when we shuffled our kids for math classes last week and switched around which teacher was teaching which group, I was excited to find out that I would be teaching a unit to my group that I had already done with the previous group.  Why is this exciting?  Why, because I already have the transparencies made!  Woohoo!

Well, my happiness lasted about 30 seconds before I pulled out the transparencies and started cleaning them off.  See, I have this little habit of filing them away with the marker still on them.  I grabbed a roll of paper towels and my handy little spray bottle and set to work.  Only to find that the marker didn't exactly come off.  Oh, it seemed to at first, but upon closer inspection, the transparencies were stained with the marker ink.  Scrubbing harder and applying a little cleaning solution didn't take the marker off, but it did take the INK off--the ink that had printed the worksheet onto the transparency in the first place!

I began to panic, worrying that this is what happens if you leave marker on transparencies without erasing it immediately.  Was this some secret that every teacher knew but I had never been told??  Was every transparency I'd made this year going to be permanently stained and I'd have to start from scratch next year???  I about started crying at this horrific thought.  Thank goodness, I pulled out my math transparencies from the first year of school and tested them with paper towel and water.  The ink wiped right off.  I cleaned another, and another, finding that they all wiped perfectly clean.  What was going on???

Well, after my hands were completely stained with vis-a-vis marker, I realized that for the past month I had been using one of the transparency boxes left behind by my predecessor, all of which don't seem to work well with wet erase markers...why else you'd make transparencies, I don't know.  Perhaps I should write the company.  Anyways, all of these would have to be thrown away and remade.  Which meant I had to redo all the transparencies for this math unit regardless.  Yikes.

Dear HP,

You fail at making transparency paper.  Put on the box, in giant bold letters, DO NOT USE WITH WET ERASE MARKERS!!!

Miss Teacher

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