April 21, 2006 1 min read

Paper or plastic? At First-Year Teacher’s school, paper is the wrong answer:

Apparently the teachers at my school use too much paper. So my principal yelled at everyone at the last staff meeting for, like, ten minutes. Now, I've just been told, we are not getting anymore paper for the rest of the year.
In the words of my students, "Fa reals?"
...Now I have to buy paper, too? Fa reals? Because, call me crazy, but I think that paper is a necessary expense in a school. I think I need to have paper in order to do my job. I am not asking them for wacky non-educational items like journals for my students, oh no! Paper, people. Paper.

First-Year Teacher’s solution is to have her students stick with plastic—plastic whiteboards, that is. She’s planning to use whiteboards for every assignment for which they’re even remotely feasible.

And based on the comments First-Year Teacher got in response to this blog post, the paper problem is not limited to her district. One responding teacher remarks that her school gives teachers a box of paper (or sometimes just a few reams) at the beginning of the year—and that’s it. So to make the paper last, she has students do a lot of copying from the blackboard, rather than making photocopies.

Kind of hammers home the point that all the fancy technological innovations in the world can’t help educators when the basics aren’t there.

(First-Year Teacher)

A version of this news article first appeared in the Blogboard blog.