Yearly Archives: 2017

In the Classroom: A Teacher Weighs in on Cadoozles!

At Zebra Pen, we love Cadoozles.  But our opinion means nothing if they aren’t living up to your expectations.  We asked a teacher to review Cadoozles and share her experiences.  Here’s what she had to say:

Anyone who knows a teacher, BlogLink_TeachersCadoozlesknows that we will NEVER say no to anything free. We take
anything, and keep everything. The popular mantra, “You never know when you might need it,” rings true in our noble profession. So…when I said that I was willing to try out some “free” pencils in my classroom, you can only imagine how elated I was when the package of Cadoozles pencils came. Opening the package with my second graders was reminiscent of Christmas morning with the ripping of tape and rustling of paper, mixed with an occasional ooh or ahh, until out came three packages of mechanical pencils. Let me fix that, not JUST mechanical pencils, but the most magical pencils my students had ever seen. (What I am about to write are exact words and feelings that my students used when first viewing and then operating these pencils.)

Cadoozles Starters Mechanical Pencil 2.0mm Assorted 12pk

Cadoozles Starters Mechanical Pencil 2.0mm Assorted 12pk

For those of you that have never seen a Cadoozles mechanical pencil, they are about six inches in length with the most adorable animal designs printed on them. The fox seemed to be the most popular. When I asked the students why they would rather use these than regular “number twos”, they talked about how cool the designs were and how smooth they felt in their hands. They were comfortable to grip and wrote quite smoothly. The idea of a mechanical pencil appealed to them because when the point breaks, there is no need to locate a sharpener or wait for the teacher to do it, but just double click and a new lead point is waiting. They also like the design because it fooled them into thinking it was a “real” pencil. Overall, my students loved using these new pencils and when offered a choice between the Cadoozles and typical pencils, they chose the Cadoozles each and every time.

As a teacher, I love that if their pencil breaks, I do not have to stop my lesson due to the incredible loudness of the pencil sharpener. I also like that the pencils don’t seem to roll around on the table as easily as the non-mechanical pencils, therefore causing less distraction and more attention to what it is that I am teaching. They also did not seem to bat an eye when I told them we were going to be writing but they could use one of the new pencils if they wanted to.

Thank you for allowing my students and I the opportunity to test out your fabulous writing tools.

Sara Dustin is a Reading Specialist in the second grade at an urban school in Taunton, MA.  We thank her for trying out a product she’d never seen and providing us her opinions, as well as those of her second-grade students.  We love that kids preferred Cadoozles every time in her classroom!

To learn more, please check out our Teachers’ Guide to Cadoozles:

Cursive: How to Teach Your Kids at Home

As a parent, we stay busy.  We go to Little League games and dance recitals, movie nights and birthday parties.  In the midst of the fast-paced day, we often miss the details.  Though our kids are learning more every day, and have access to quite literally the world, some of the things we take for granted are falling to the wayside.

Take cursive handwriting.

Cursive is disappearing from the classrooms, yielding to an era of word-processing prowess and textable data.  But more and more parents are realizing that, whether they homeschool or send their kids to a traditional setting, they want their children to know how to read and write in cursive.  Just the simple act of writing your name takes on an elegance no block letter can provide.

And who doesn’t like to receive a handwritten letter in the mail?

It’s hard to find the time to develop a curriculum yourself, so we’ve made it simple.  By combining our Cadoozles mechanical pencils with these handy tips and resources, you can guide your little scholar to cursive comfort in no time at all.

So, what do you need to do?

  1. First, if you do not currently home school or have a homework area set aside, find a great spot with a flat surface and no distractions. Kids don’t necessarily take to this right away, and can be easily dragged away by disruptions.
  2. Decide on the length of time to be devoted to this project. Take into account how much homework your child already has to complete, as well as extracurricular activities.  This can be taken on slowly, with a new letter every few days, or if your child is excited, in a few weekends.
  3. Make sure you’ve selected an appropriate writing implement. The child-friendly grip and patterns, and roll-resistant design, of our fun Cadoozles makes a tedious task more enjoyable.
  4. Consider developing a reward system to coordinate with the project. As each new upper and lowercase letter is learned, have your child color in a chart.  When they complete it, come up with an appropriate and fun activity or prize.
  5. Incorporate history into the lesson! Show your child historical documents and let them pick out letters they can identify as they go.  Let them know how much cursive has changed over the centuries; make sure to include more recent historical documents and letters (how about family records?)
  6. Ask your friends and family to get involved! Request letters to your child on social media.  You’ll be stunned by just how many people love the idea, and your child will be thrilled to check the mail every day.  Once your child is a bit more comfortable, have them write responses and include one of your own so your child can see your handwriting too.  Your family and friends will love it.
  7. BE PATIENT! This is hard stuff; give them time and take frequent breaks

Think back on when you learned cursive in school.  Handwriting is generally not taught in alphabetical order.  We’re including some resources for you to try.  You will find both pre-made and cursive worksheet generators online so try them out to find what works for you.

RESOURCES:

Handwriting Without Tears

Cadoozles help busy parents teach cursive at home

Kidzone

Cadoozles help parents teach cursive at home with proper finger placement

HandwritingWorksheets.com

These cursive worksheets help parents teach cursive at home. Cadoozles are a great pencil choice.

It’s the age of digital communication and we often get disconnected from skills we don’t use.  Are you an adult in need of a refresher on your handwriting? Check out this workbook from the National Adult Literacy Agency.  Grab some Z-Grip Plus Mechanical Pencils and get writing!

cleaning supplies

Spring Cleaning: 8 Ways to Clean Your Desk at Home and at Work and Boost Productivity

Spring is in the air! After an always-tiring winter, the promise of spring right around the corner is the perfect excuse to start making some changes. Spring is a time of renewal and beginnings. Though we are a few months into 2017, it’s not too late to start getting into good habits and dropping your old, bad ones. Truly, a good spring cleaning is all you need to kick-start a new found way of being. Spring cleaning isn’t limited only to your humble abode. Clean your desk at work, too! A clean workspace makes for a productive workspace. Use these tips to help you get started today.

shutterstock_5342568791. Set a date and stick to it
First and foremost, stop putting off cleaning your desk! Words only mean so much.  Action is required. Look at your calendar. Find a day that works for you at home and then one for at work. Write it down. Stick to it. When those dates roll around, start cleaning.

First and foremost, stop putting off cleaning your desk! Words only mean so much.  Action is required. Look at your calendar. Find a day that works for you at home and then one for at work. Write it down. Stick to it. When those dates roll around, start cleaning.

mailbox2. Clear out your inbox
Your desk isn’t the only thing that’s likely to be cluttered! Go through your inbox.  Delete old emails that are irrelevant. Unsubscribe to that email list you got put on after ordering that one thing that one time. You can even designate folders for certain emails, so now you no longer have to scroll through endless email when you’re looking for a memo about the sales meeting. Peace of mind, in regards to your emails, is attainable if you make the effort.

shutterstock_5343589033. Organize your desktop on screen
Do you ever boot up your computer or laptop and feel immediately overwhelmed by the state of your desktop? Organize it! Make folders. Use the folders. Get rid of old files that are now useless. You will feel so much better knowing that everything has a place to go and be easily accessible.

 

4. Sort through drawersdesk
Throw out those old takeout menus. Declutter your desk by sorting through everything you have in your drawers. You’ll be amazed by what you actually have in there once you sort through it all. Also, consider the space you will free up by getting rid of your junk! Clear desk, clear mind.

 

 

5. Actually clean with cleaning productsshutterstock_530572219
You don’t even want to know about all of the germs living in the keyboards of computers and laptops. Take the extra time to bust out the disinfectant and wipe down your space.  Don’t forget to dust! Your immune system will thank you.

 

Sarasa Gel Retractable RDI 0.7mm Assorted 14pk

6. Redo your writing instrument collection
Chuck all those old pens that no longer work.  You don’t need them.  Revamp the pens you have on your desk with Zebra’s Sarasa Gel pens.  Say Goodbye to Smears and Smudges. Say hello to proven faster drying ink – perfect for organizing and creativity.
Explore Sarasa Gel pens:

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product-category/brand/sarasa/

 

folder7. File File File
Organization is key to productivity.  Find a way to organize and file your paperwork through your own filing system will be so beneficial. Goodbye endless stacks of paper and rogue memos laying around.

 

 

 

8. Reward Yourselfshutterstock_533440450
Perhaps the most important.  Treat yourself! You took the time to hunker down and get organized to help improve your productivity, so you deserve it.

 

Find Zen in (and getting organized with) your pen. Zebra Pen.

 

 

 

adult coloring

Adult Coloring: Color Your Way to Calm

These days it seems like no one can find time to sit down and relax. From running to and from the office or back and forth from your child’s soccer practice, there is never enough time in the day. The constant go-go-go mentality that so many of us are in wreaks havoc on our well-being. Why do we feel stressed all the time? We run ourselves ragged and forget to make even the smallest amount of time for ourselves.

At Zebra Pen, we know that a little R&R is just as important as all the hard work you put into your lives day in and day out. We are all about helping you find your zen in calm, creative ways.  And you don’t need to book a crazy, all-inclusive spa getaway for next weekend to find it.

Did you ever notice that when you give a kid a coloring book and crayons how quiet and focused they become? This isn’t just some kind of ruse that babysitters use to distract kids (well, maybe a little bit). However, there are great benefits to be reaped from coloring for kids and for you.  Coloring in a coloring book is no longer an activity reserved for children.

In recent years, researchers have been talking about the wonderful advantages adult coloring provides for your health.

Form of Art Therapy

Sarasa Fineliner

Coloring can be considered as a form of art therapy because it truly helps your mental health by allowing you time to relax—and you can do it at home with adult coloring books.All kinds of artistic practices can be therapeutic.Art can be used to examine emotions, resolve internal conflicts, develop socially, reduce anxiousness and increase self-esteem, as well as a slew of other things.Any form of artistic and personal expression can help you better yourself.

Mental Health Benefits

mental health

The ancient practice of meditation has been proven to have amazing benefits on the health of those who practice. In many ways, coloring is another form of meditation because it forces you to sit down and relax while focusing on a small task. Some superb mental health benefits of coloring include:

  • Reduced Anxiety
  • Increased mindfulness
  • Helps improves focus
  • Blocks intruding thoughts from entering the brain
  • Allows you to actively sit still and relax

Our brains weren’t meant to be constantly firing out and processing information. Finding the time to relax is crucial to your mental health. Coloring is a great way you can do that.

 Where to Begin coloringthrees

If you think that coloring is a new hobby you’d like to pick up as a way to relax, Zebra Pen is here to help you start. You can find our free coloring pages, ranging from easy to advanced, on our website. We offer a variety of different writing instruments that are great for coloring.

Sarasa Gel Retractable RDI 0.7mm Assorted 14pk

Our top-selling Sarasa© Gel Pens , combine bold color vibrancy with a flowing rapid-dry ink experience. There’s never a dull moment thanks to 14 deep vibrant colors.

Sarasa Fineliner 0.8mm Fluorescent PurpleOur latest product: the Sarasa Fineliners! These pens define fine ink performance with a unique, long-lasting color writing and drawing experience. The vibrant, quick-drying ink is water resistant and will bring out the artist in us all.

 

Cadoozles Starters Mechanical Pencil 2.0mm Assorted 12pk

Looking to embrace your inner child a little more as you color?  Use our Cadoozles Starters Colored Mechanical Pencils. You’ll love them as much as your kids.

Adulting is hard. Don’t forget to take time for yourself and relax with a coloring book today. 

Find Zen in your pen. Zebra Pen.

tax prep

The Ultimate Guide to Filing Income Taxes

Oh … we know, it’s tax season again.

Are you an ultimate procrastinator when it comes to filing your taxes?

We all wait until the last minute to file our taxes. No matter how many reminders, tax guides, or reminders we receive, we put it off, and keep putting it off.

Our tip to you, get the right highlighter and pens to make sure you are completing your taxes with a quality writing instrument. Having a pen that works makes all the difference when you finally get around to completing your taxes.

Zebra Orbitz Gel Pen with Check Safe Ink TechnologyOrbitz 2

Zebra H-301 Highlighter76070PROD - H-301_Pink_cap off

The infographic below includes a list of all the forms needed, as well as advice on what to do if you need an extension or if you owe the IRS money. Good luck and try to not procrastinate this year.

Ultimate-procrastinator-to-filing-income-taxes

SOURCE: HR Block

Enlightened Writing: Love Letters

Finding enlightenment is not always an easy task with our busy, hectic day-to-day lives.  As winter is still sticking around for the foreseeable future, taking the time to snuggle up indoors for some relaxation might be just what you need.  Writing is a great way to wind down, relax, and work towards your own enlightenment.  While you relax and write, you should be reflecting positively on your life, past and present.  The more you write, the more likely you are to achieve a sense of enlightenment.  Work to make writing a daily practice in your life.

EnlightenedWriting2It’s no secret that Valentine’s Day is quickly approaching.  All of the pink and red hearts and candy that surround us at stores across the country serve as a reminder that the international holiday of love is upon us.  There are so many gifts that you could pick up for your significant other or loved ones.  Jewelry, chocolate, flowers…the list goes on.  But what about adding a little more of a personalized touch to your gift?  The perfect way to do that would be to handwrite a love letter.

Sometimes you may struggle to say out loud how you truly feel about someone or find it hard to tell someone how much they mean to you.  When in doubt, write it out.  Such a big part of finding enlightenment through writing is being able to express yourself without constraints and fears.  A love letter allows you the freedom to put all your deepest feelings down on paper.  Handwriting love letters make them all the more special and personal.

Another unique way to express your love for someone is through poetry.  Poetry can be straightforward or abstract, and still get your declaration of love across.  Use your creativity and write from the heart when drafting poems.  You don’t have to be the Bard or T.S. Eliot when it comes to poetry, but the special person in your life will appreciate the gesture more than you know.

At Zebra Pen, we want all of our customers to make strides on their way to achieving enlightenment, whether it is through writing or other aspects of their lives.  We know the first step to achieving enlightenment in writing is through your writing instrument, so we hope you always reach for your favorite Zebra Pen writing instrument when you write.

Use your writing to experience enlightenment and express your love for the people in your life.

Find Zen (and enlightenment) in your pen…Zebra Pen.

What Does Your Handwriting Say About You?

According to research from the National Pen Company in the U.S., your handwriting can give
away clues about 5,000 different personality traits based on the way you space your letters, how you sign your name, and even how you connect the letter ‘o’ and ‘s’ to other letters in a word.

It can even be used to identify potential health problems including schizophrenia, high blood pressure as well as how much energy you have.

Check out the infographic below to learn what your handwriting says about you. It’s also fun analyzing the handwriting of your friends and family members, so be sure to hand it off or pass it along!

Handwriting Personality-infographic-700

 

Source: National Pen Company

Are Handwritten Love Letters a Vanishing Art?

For as long as people had a pen, paper and could write, the art of crafting a romantic love letter EnlightenedWriting3has been penned. But in the era of texting, tweeting, emojis and emailing, the intuitive pleasure of a handwritten love letter is largely lost.

Remember in grammar school as a kid, when the “I like you, do you like me? Check yes or no” note was passed to you in class? Now you send a text (“luv u”). Then finish the conversation with a suggestive emoji.

When it comes to sentimental value, females overwhelmingly lead the genders. Females are over twice as likely as men to keep notes, children’s schoolwork, diaries and their own creative writing, poetry and songs. Males are more likely to cherish handwritten wedding vows than females, but females have neater writing than males and believe that handwriting reflects their personality.

It’s a spectacular thing to be loved with words, and not utilitarian texts full of empty acronyms, humorous-faced emojis or emails sent two seconds before grabbing a cab. How much more precious, then, those letters of former times,  when the flow of ink, the craftsmanship of words and letters on paper, embossed paper you can touch. They delivered more than a letter, they delivered thoughtful emotions.

Nevertheless, we hope someone writes you a love letter. But better yet, we hope you start writing them. We sincerely hope you begin to construct an environment in which your relationships are able to flourish in such a way that the people you love notice the time and effort you put into a handwritten note or love letter.Are-Handwritten-Love-Letters-a-Vanishing-Art

SOURCE: A survey of 2000 people by luxury travel brand Signature from Thomas Cook

Pen Fashion for 2017

New year new you, right?  The New Year means a clean slate—a clean slate that you can do whatever you want with.  Made resolutions?  Make this year the year you actually stick to them.  Looking to reinvent your wardrobe?  Go for it.

Clothes aren’t the only way you can make a statement about who you are.  There are many different ways you can go about expressing yourself.  A subtle, yet bold way to communicate who you are to others is through the pen you write with.  Whether you like ballpoints or gel pens, rollerballs or fountain pens, your preferred writing instrument says a lot about you.  At Zebra Pen, we know that a pen is often times way more than just a pen.  We want our customers to be able to personalize who they are and present their image through our pens.  In order to do so, we believe that it is all about matching a pen barrel to a personality and lifestyle.  We offer a variety of fashion pens and pencils to help our customers properly express themselves.  Fashion products come in multiple barrel styles from floral to safari or choose from a wide range of vibrant colors.

When thinking about what changes you want to make this year think about your current writing instruments and consider revamping your style with our fashion pens and pencils.

Cadoozles

 

 

Cadoozles Mechanical Pencil — Woodland Critters

Cadoozles Woodland Critters mechanical pencil

Cadoozles are not just for kids, but they definitely love them just as much as you will!  These adorable mechanical pencils look good in anyone’s hand.  Animal lover?  Cadoozles Woodland Critters are the mechanical pencils for you.  These mechanical pencils are refillable with 0.9mm lead, which is resistant to breakage—just another added bonus.  The 4 available barrel designs include: Foxes, Hedgehogs, Owls, and Raccoons.

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product/woodland-critters/

Style #2 Mechanical Pencil

Style #2 Mechanical Pencil

Stylish, sophisticated and practical.  The Style #2 Mechanical Pencil is the most fashionable pencil around and it never needs to be sharpened.  Its large eraser serves as an easy lead advance mechanism.  Refillable with standard 0.7mm lead.  The barrel is available in 6 cool styles.  Choose from: Houndstooth, Blue Polka Dot, Green Polka Dot, Line Polka Dot, Pink Argyle, or Mixed Polka Dot.

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product/style-2-mechanical-pencil-8/

Z-grip Fashion

 

 

Z-Grip Ballpoint Floral Retractable Pen

Z-Grip Ballpoint Floral

Express your personality florally with the colorful designs of the Z-Grip Floral Collection.  With this retractable ballpoint pen you can expect the same core traits as the original Z-Grip ballpoint retractable: value, performance, and comfort.  It features a durable metal clip for a secure grasp.  This pen is as charming as it is fun to show off.  It has low-viscosity ink which makes for an incredibly smooth writing experience.  Available in 5 matching ink and grip colors: Violet, Turquoise, Fuchsia, Light Green, and Black.

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product/z-grip-floral-ball-point-retractable/?source=brand

Z-Grip Ballpoint Retractable Pen — Safari Collection

Z-Grip Safari

Don’t be afraid to walk on the wild side with the Z-Grip Safari Collection.  Show off your adventurous side with this ballpoint retractable pen, perfect for office work or just to keep in your bag.  You will find the same great performance from this pen as the original Z-Grip Ballpoint Retractable Pen.  With easy-glide ink, you can be sure that every time you write with a Z-Grip Safari pen it is going to smoothly glide over whatever writing surface.  Available only in black ink.  Choose from 4 fun animal print designs: Zebra, Lion, Puma, and Giraffe.

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product/z-grip-retractable-ballpoint-pens-safari-collection/?source=brand

ZEBRA STYLUSPEN

 

 

StylusPen Capped Ballpoint Pen

Zebra StylusPen

This pen meets both written and technological needs by doubling as a pen and a stylus for your iPads, phones, or tablets.  The StylusPen Capped Ballpoint Pen delivers on function and value, but has just the right amount of personalization and style.  Its lacquered metal barrel is available in Black, White, & Zebra Print barrel colors.  Available only in black ink.

https://staging.zebrapen.com/product/styluspen-stick-ball-point/?source=pen-type

Back to School

Back to School: Round Two

With the holiday season coming to an end, winter breaks from school will also be ending.  Now is the perfect time to restock on writing supplies that you probably ran out of last semester!  Soon you or your children will be waking up and stepping out into the cold in the early hours to leave for school.  Make sure you are sending them off to school with products that you know you can count on.

For Elementary and Middle School Students:

Pencils

Cadoozles Starters_ No. 2Cadoozles Starters #2 Mechanical Pencils are perfect for little learners! They are perfect for tiny hands that need to practice their writing skills.

Classic2

Classic #2 Yellow Mechanical Pencils are just like the traditional yellow #2 pencil in design, but function mechanically. These pencils are stylish and never need sharpening!

Pens

Z-Grip Safari

The Z-Grip Ballpoint Retractable Pen Safari Collection makes a fun statement and will help to make young students’ learning experiences fun.

GR8 Gel Retractable Pen

GR8 Gel Retractable Pens are designed specifically to make for a smooth writing experience. They are easy to hold and write with, making them great for students.

 

For High School and College Students:

Pencils

DelGuard Mechanical Pencil

The sophisticated DelGuard Mechanical Pencil resists lead breakage and clogging. It’s the ultimate pencil for the most dedicated students.

M301

The M-301 is from our popular Steel line. Its sleek design and handy clip make it both fashionable and portable—the perfect combination for on-the-go, busy students.

Pens

Z-Grip Plus

The Z-Grip Plus Ballpoint Retractable Pen has low viscosity ink that glides easily across paper, which is essential for notetaking. This pen also comes in several ink colors, all at an affordable price.

29210PROD - F-402_0.7mm_Black

A step up from our popular Steel 3-series, the F-402 Ballpoint Retractable Pen features a rugged steel body and rubberized grip that offer a slightly weighted writing experience that maximizes comfort.

Highlighters

H-301 Highlighter

The H-301 Highlighter is as vibrant as it is sleek. It will be able to keep up with all students as they use this highlighter to study and take notes with.

 

For All Students:

Colored Pencils

Cadoozles Starters Mechanical Colored Pencils

Cadoozles Starters Mechanical Colored Pencils aren’t just for kids! Students of all ages will enjoy using these colored pencils when they are creating art projects or color-coding their periodic tables.

Highlighters

Eco Zebrite Highlighter - Yellow

Our environmentally conscious Eco Zebrite Highlighter contains recycled materials and is double-ended with both fine and medium points. The Zebrite comes in an array of bright colors that won’t bleed through paper.

Marker

SarasaPorous

The newest product in our lineup, the Sarasa Fineliner provides a needle tip that will bring out the artist in every student with its wide variety of vibrant colors. It is the perfect marker for craft projects or adding something extra to diligent notes taken in class.

Going back to school is an exciting time both in fall and after winter break.  Find that certain Zen-like feeling knowing you equipped the students in your life with reliable writing utensils that will get them through the rest of the school year.  Check out our full range of products offered on our website.  Find Zen in your pen.  Zebra Pen.