Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year --For School Supplies!

Today's Wonder of the World is...Clean White Paper For A New School Year!

So where's the paper in this pile of Sam's fourth grade school supplies? It's there, in with the Kleenex and the Clorox wipes and the antibacterial hand soap. Sam starts back to school today, and at least I know he'll be clean. And hopefully he'll learn a lot too!

Ever since we moved home from France, the beginning of the school year always brings back memories/nightmares from preparation for la Rentrée, the return to French school. Ah the memories/nightmares...the fountain pens, the gomme (erasers,) the crayons (No not crayons--pencils,) the chemise cartonnées (and no, that's not a cardboard shirt,) and most of all THE CAHIERS! So many kinds of notebooks!

Oh how the French love their paper!
And I loved it too, once I understood it.
Here's an example of one type of French paper. It's a page out of Ben's very first French notebook, from first grade.

Tra la la, c'est moi, Gafi!
That page is from his first few days of French first grade, when he didn't understand a word his teacher said. That's when he became a pro at mimicking and learned to write in cursive along with his classmates. Now he uses his mimicking talent to do impersonations. Usually of me or his dad when we're mad at him, so that we'll fall over laughing and forget all about whatever upset us. Sneaky boy.

By the way, do you know who Gafi is?
If you go to school in France you do. At least you did back then.
Gafi is un fantôme. A ghost! Sometimes he's naughty, but he's always fun.

He's a lot more fun than some French teachers, who, when the other first graders are teasing you about how big your feet are, and you complain to them (because you've started to understand French and realize what they're saying) look down at your feet and say to you, "Well, you must admit, they are enormous."
What can I say? They tell it like it is.
Ben grew to love first grade. And he ADORED his plain spoken teacher.
And his writing got better.

Here's an example from second grade, which shows another kind of paper they used.

The French just love different kinds of paper. You should see the school supply lists! Ben's second grade teacher's required supply list was a page and a half long, single spaced!
But all this paper talk made me think of this.

Flickr photo by adellecharles
Did you learn on it too?
And that got me wondering...what kind of paper do they use in other countries?

Here's some paper from Mexico.

Flickr photo by abby
The French use that kind too.

I love this kind, and not just because of the COURAGe.

Flickr photo by rockronle
It's for writing Chinese characters! Click on it for a better view.

Do fresh blank notebooks make your heart skip a beat? Or is paper just paper?
What about the other supplies?
Like these staplers I love.

Photo thanks to See Jane Work.
Go stop by See Jane Work, and find loads of pretty/fun supplies.

Or stop by one of my favorite blogs, Jane's Apron. (What is it about Jane? She's everywhere these days!) Look in at her etsy shop HERE to find the coolest clipboards around.

And then hop back to her blog, and read how to make one! And no, you sewing hater. You can make them with whatever paper you want.

I'm envious of all those supplies Sam gets to carry around.
I might just have to buy myself a brand new composition book. Or two.
Like these.

You can find them at Paper Peddlers etsy shop, HERE.
Or I could always go to Staples, though it's kind of crazy there this time of year. On second thought, I'll just watch this old Staples commercial. I like the summer around my house, but I have to admit, I LOVE this commercial!

Have a Wonder-Full Tuesday, everyone!
Love, Becky


Suzie said...

Im am getting so freaked out about these schools supplies and I dont even have to buy them this yaer as I have one more year to kindgergarden. Di you daughter call?

Anonymous said...

that commercial is funny! the reaction of my kids is exactly like the 2 kiddos from this commercial....he...heee... Your photos look like the stuff laying around my house this week!!

I'm so there.

Liz said...

Wow.... those French school supplies are daunting to say the least.

Tara said...

I love this commercial! I might have to put this on my blog. LOL this is my favorite one of all time! I'm so glad when my little one goes back to school but after he goes I miss him.


Rebecca Ramsey said...

Hey Suzie, don't worry. You will be out there with the rest of us, fighting over red plastic folders with both brads and pockets because that's what the teacher required. It makes me cringe to think of the things I'd ask my students to buy! You will be fine.
And YES! Sarah finally called me on the cell phone as I was walking around Walmart this morning, looking for said red plastic folder with brads and pockets for Ben. (I had already tried two Staples and a Target!) She's FINE!!! And oh so happy. And very tired. It did my heart good to be that irritating person, shopping and talking and pushing my cart. I tried not to be too loud.

Hi Candy! I feel for you!
Amen Liz. When you can't understand the supply list, even with a dictionary, it's quite overwhelming.

Tara I know. That is absolutely the best back to school commercial of all time. Glad to find another fan!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

That commercial made me laugh! So funny.

I do adore school supplies! Folders, notebooks, pens...the best stuff ever!

Rosemary said...

Hi Becky,
I love fresh new school supplies. I miss all of that!!
Great post today!!
Have a good day!

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I hated the thin lined paper we learned handwriting on--you know, the kind that ripped the instant you tried to erase?

Rhondi said...

I always loved getting new school supplies when I was a kid and to this day still enjoy the treatof a brand new journal when my old one is full.
Hugs, Rhondi

Barb said...

Hi Becky,

I am sooo glad I don't have a child in school. The list for Jayde and Hailey was enormous. I don't remember having such a long list back in the dinosaur age.

That commercial always made me laugh. Love it.

good luck with the shopping.


May Vanderbilt said...

This is one of my fondest memories from my school days too! The teachers get so intense about paper!

Single-spaced, college rule, non-spiral, don't write on the back, in the right-hand corner put the name and the date and the period...

Oh school!

Life on Bonnie Lane said...

I'm so sorry I haven't been by lately. I am so far behind on blog visits!

I remember that paper with the red lines in the middle...we used to have to practice handwriting on that! Ugh! I wanted the nice paper with narrow lines!

I see your daughter went off to college. That must be hard! She will be back though on breaks...and with a load of laundry! Did you ever get all of her stuff there in one load?


Hooked on Houses said...

Here I thought my kids' had a lot of school supplies to buy. My daughter is required to have 24 glue sticks for 1st grade. How on earth is she going to go through 24 glue sticks in one year?? We've been using the same two glue sticks here at home we bought years ago when my son was little.

As a writer, I have always loved new notebooks and fresh paper, so I enjoyed seeing the examples from other countries. Also got a kick out of how the French teachers tell it like it is!

I'm eager to read your book now! -Julia

Gina2424 said...

Be back soon with a report. I just LOVE your posts-so fun and interesting. Mailed your goodies Tuesday.

Anonymous said...

I wrote a column last year about that awesome Staples commercial and just reposted it on my blog. Check it out if you want a laugh!


Betty C. said...

School supply shopping used to drive me crazy in France with each teacher requesting a certain type and size of notebook. Middle school is the worst for this -- things seem to let up a little in high school.

cindy said...

Yeah. Paper. And new Crayon smell. LOve it. And I always LOVED that commercial...cracked me up everytime.