Tuesday, March 19, 2019

gaffer tape

Like many teachers, my classroom is painted cinder block.  It is hard to put things on it.  Hot glue can work.  But I need to change things with our Standards Based Education.  Duct tape and packing tape work, but Duct tape has a residue.  I have found that gaffer tape works well.  Since it is cloth, t tears easily and feels nicer on the hands. With the colors, I can color code things.  Coding things the students use is good.  I made holders for the tape using the 3 D printer.  The Neon green and pink I like are in constant danger of being scarfed by students.  But if they want to be creative, so be it.
It turns out I had bought a good quality gaffer tape.

writes like butter

I am not sure where I heard of Blackwing.  I knew of them when I went to a art store that carried them.  I have had a box I went throw.  Although the claims of the lead carry, the best is the fact that the erasers can be replaced. 

I rarely saw a pencil that wore out before the eraser was gone.  I bought, at a pen show, a sampler set.  There are three kinds of Blackwing.  I am not sure about the cover for the end.  I bought some clips so I could put them into my pocket.  They do feel different.  The price is about 2 dollars each.  The sharpener is strange.  There are two sections one for the wood and one for the lead to make a point.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Domestic bliss

We purchased some cloth bags for gardening.  This is so we can move things around as needed instead of in the soil.  The local transfer station (landfill area) has free compost.  All you need is an appointment and a truck or trailer.  We put some fertilizer and ammonia mix to break it down.  The bags are ready to go.  The squash look like they took the transplant well.  I have pepper plants for the empty ones.  I will be getting flowers for the front garden after I throw some of the compost into them.

Sunday, March 3, 2019


Super Glue is needed sometime in life.  But I ran into a problem that the tubes would not work.  Locktite is better.  The amount can be controlled by squeezing the sides of the bottle to prevent over use.  The secure cap helps to prevent drying out.

Sunday, January 27, 2019

3D printer

I have finally started using the 3d Printer.  Students may do projects with it, but I am offering them the opportunity to make one item for themselves.

If you can get a 3D printer for your class, do so.
They learn to use the technology and I have something to show administrators. I use a flashforge dreamer.  The two nozzles lets me print the supports and rafts in one color while the project is another.  It makes it easier to clean the project when finished.  Then I can print several things in different colors.

Image result for flashforge dreamer

It was acting up because I am ham fisted when working on it.  I even had it duct taped for a time.

Advice for people.

Watch the youtube videos that show operations.  Check the real people, the troubleshooting guide is of little help.  This "is part broken?"  "replace it".  I know that.  How do I figure out if it is broken.
Do not be afraid to work on it.  Every part can be replaced.  It is hard to break the whole thing.
You can even reprogram it with a scan disk.
Make any tools needed for it.  Check out the internets.  I used Thingiverse for ideas. I needed an alignment block for the dual nozzles.  Thingiverse had one and I used one for another printer also.
Do not troubleshoot when you are tired or frustrated.
Check out the tools you need for it and get them.  Trying to fix the machine with makeshift tools does not work.  I even got some acupuncture style needles to clear clogs.
Check out educational things.  Even things not specific to your class can get students excited.
They play constantly with the clamps I made.  The moon model I made had cracks and needs to be redone.  They cannot wait for me to do that.  Since it takes over 23 hours to print they have to wait.
If you have problems it is probably a clogged nozzle.  Check you settings for the plastic you have.  Check the leveling.  Make sure the platform is cleaned.
I use a lot of alcohol, paper towels to clean.  And stick glue to make it stick to the platform.

Sharpie marker holder

Models of electron orientation

Fractal pyramid

gears.  They can be reset.  I need to make more backs and pegs

Sunday, October 28, 2018

two men enter

Years ago I got a grant to purchase toys to teach physics.  Part of it was wind up robots to show potential and kinetic energy.  It was slow Friday after the pep rally there was no way to get them to work.  So I got out seven of the robots.
Usually kids just wind them up and play.  My knuckleheads had a stack of books and was doing Robot Thunderdome.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

It is how you phrase it

So I'm writing my first draft of a letter to my administrators asking them to fix the surface of the lab stations in my chem lab. I really signed the first draft, "I remain, respectfully..."

I read waaaaay to much historical fiction