Happy National Pencil Day!

Today is National Pencil Day. It commemorates the day in 1858 when Hymen Lipman patented the ‘modern pencil.’ It was a wooden graphite pencil with a rubber eraser attached.

How do you feel about pencils? I love them! From the scritch-scratch sounds they make as they move across the page to the forgiving eraser conveniently placed on top, pencils are special friends. I don’t write with them as much as a would like to because sometimes I worry about smudging the page or wonder if my notes will fade over time, but I think I will resurrect my pencil usage in honor of the day. After all, it was a pencil that first sparked my love of writing, and it is much easier to control than the pen.

I can be a pencil snob. I prefer Ticonderoga yellow pencils or Staedtler black pencils. When it comes to colored pencils, Crayola it is! Obviously, my pencils need to be sharp, and I usually have a handy-dandy pencil sharpener close by for when I can’t get to my electric sharpener. In my classroom, I have one pencil sharpener for graphite and one for colored pencils because as much as I love colored pencils, their wax or oil-based interiors can wreak havoc on a sharpener.

Fun Facts About Pencils – link below

  • One pencil can draw a line up to 45 miles long.
  • Pencils can write underwater and in zero gravity too.
  • One pencil can write up to 45,000 words.
  • Almost 14 billion pencils are produced in a year.
  • Pencils in the U.S are painted yellow to indicate the best quality pencils.
  • Roald Dahl used exactly six sharpened pencils with yellow casings from the beginning of the day; only once all six became unusable would he resharpen them.
  • John Steinbeck’s “East of Eden” reportedly took more than 300 pencils to write; Steinbeck was also said to be an obsessive pencil user, writing many of his masterpieces in pencil.

I will definitely try to remember the three lessons you can learn from a pencil. I am not fond of the first one; I worry about the second one, but I love the last one!

7 thoughts on “Happy National Pencil Day!

  1. I didn’t know about National Pencil Day, but I certainly appreciate them and celebrate them, especially those Ticonderogas! I love the facts you included with this – so interesting! Happy Pencil Day!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I love pencils. I am a bit of pencil snob too. If kids would bring pencils other than Ticonderoga’s to my classroom, I would confiscate them and replace them with Ticonderoga’s! Or if they were specialty pencils I would send them home. But I was always trading out “other yellow pencils” for the good stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Rita, This is great! You should send this into a kids magazine. It’s concise, informative and humorous. I learned so much in this short slice. Two pencil sharpers? Who knew colored ones need a sharpener all their own. My respect for pencils has grown in the time it took to read this and I will remember those three pointers…very cool!

    Liked by 1 person

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