I haven’t yet met a student that doesn’t like writing on chalk boards and dry erase boards. There is just something about being able to draw temporary designs and then erase them that captivates every child, at any age (even grown ups!).
That’s why these products are a tremendously practical purchase for homeschoolers. They just get used. A lot.
Since chalk boards can be messy, the dry erase variety is really best. Even those with a sensitivity to the markers can purchase the low-odor variety; thus, anyone can use them without messes or offensive odors.
Dry erase products come in many shapes and sizes and are available at most major retailers and office suppliers. For classroom and coop sets, there are vendors online that sell multiples at a discount. Markers can be found most anywhere, and now come in prettier (even neon) colors rather than the traditional sets once used only by presenters and university professors (how I first fell in love with them!).
One product that I particularly like is the original “Trace Erase Board” clip board and dry erase system:
These handy little boards resemble standard clip-boards, but are thicker, heavier and more durable. They have a clear surface with space beneath (like a pocket) to slip one or several sheets of paper inside. Best yet, students can slip worksheets, multiplication practice, manuscript lessons, spelling lists, or anything else inside. Pages are kept flat and clean, while students write on the clear surface with the marker. After erasing, sheets can be used over and over again.
Trace Erase Boards come in many varieties, each targeting an age or grade level, like this 3rd/4th grade one:
Each has a set of basic information printed right on the front and back of the board, for instance a ruler, a map or a commonly used set of facts, corresponding to the age/grade level product.
Trace Erase Boards may be purchased online and can usually be found at larger homeschool conventions, as well. Plus, families may purchase optional cards to slip inside, for teaching additional skills, like these:
Perhaps the best feature of these boards is that they’re portable, making them easy to take outdoors for nature studies and on family road trips.
These kinds of products may also be useful for children who struggle with traditional written and illustrated work, but are able to use dry erase products instead.
[I do not receive recognition or compensation for featuring products like these -- I do it only to bring you great ideas for your homeschooling classroom. Readers are advised to review the suggestions and determine for themselves the suitability of the featured product or service for their own families.]