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Speaking of School Supplies...

Following up on the Pen Warrior's recent post, we spotted another article that might help parents select the right school supplies to get their kids through the coming academic year.

Among the suggestions from the Othello Outlook:

  • Colour-code notebooks, folders and other supplies into matching sets for each subject, allowing your student to find the right materials more quickly.
  • Avoid overdoing it with bright colours or glittery decorations...too much can be a distraction.
  • Consider erasable markers and pens, such as the Pilot FriXion, so children can easily correct mistakes without rendering classwork unreadable.

The article also included an interesting, and somewhat surprising, note about paper usage among students raised on flash drives and smart phones.

Despite technology, the average student uses 11 sheets of paper daily. All this reading and writing can lead to eye problems, especially when there’s a stark contrast between the printed word and the brightness of the paper. Look for paper with lower levels of brightness.

(How many of you are old like us and remember going to school with a Trapper Keeper full of loose-leaf paper? For some reason, though, they were never available in the UK.)

Meanwhile, if you're looking for pens for your children, we always recommend the Stabilo 's move easy and the Lamy ABC for beginning writers. Both are built for children's smaller hands and are designed to encourage proper finger placement.

For older students, a good gel stick pen such as the Uniball Signo Gel Grip will offer a nice, a smooth writing experience while being relatively inexpensive to replace when it's inevitably lost. The Signo also comes in a variety of scented inks that might appeal to your tween.

If you're trying to stick to environmentally friendly products for school, Paper Mate now has ballpoint pens and mechanical pencils made partially from biodegradable materials.

And finally, students looking for a little more style in their pens can try the School Sherpa from Paradise Pens. It's a pen shell with a chalkboard-and-alphabet motif that will hold a variety of Uniball, Pilot and Sharpie refills. At almost US$30, the Sherpa is a little pricey, but it does have panache and, as the company mentions, can also make a nice gift for a teacher.

Hope this helps. Feel free to share any school supply experiences you've had so far.

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