# A Weapon of Mass Instruction!

Over 50 years ago, I saw a pencil leaning against the front porch of a house near my grandmother's. I was enthralled with the scale of the pencil. It was almost as tall as the porch posts! Wow! What fun that would be. Does it write? Does it erase? What is it made of? Why did they make it? Dad, can I have it? The only question that was answered was the last one and that answer was "no" but I took it home with me in my mind.

Now, as a teacher who spent 30 years in public schools and another 11 years after I "retired," operating a tutoring business, I have gone through a lot of pencils with a lot of students. A few weeks ago, as I was explaining some geometry to a student, I used a standard pencil as an example of a hexagon and we walked through the geometry displayed in it. "How many degrees are each angle?" I've also used a pencil to apply ratios and algebra. "What is the ratio of length to width on this pencil?" What percentage of the length is the ferrule?"

I have several things in my tutoring center that play with the mind by using strange proportions. I look for ways to get students to think with a different part of their brain.

I know a man who has a saw mill. He repurposes old power poles. Around here, that means cedar. I asked him to mill some 1/2" boards that were 12' long and 12" wide. Those boards are all bright yellow now.
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shotgunshane says: 7 months ago
I think you would get pulled over by the cops for that.
instructamaker says: 9 months ago
That is sooooooo cool
hopporto says: 1 year ago
Nonononononononoonononono NO...Weapon of Math Disruption
desmondtheredx in reply to hopporto1 year ago
lol. couldnt help it
Chris98 in reply to hopporto1 year ago
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to hopporto1 year ago
Could be!
poofrabbit says: 1 year ago
I just saw that you won! I'm so very excited for you as this is one of the best instructables and out of the box thinking I've ever seen! I can't wait to see what you come up with next!
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to poofrabbit1 year ago

I checked out some of your instructables. You are quite artistic.

I am working on my second instructable and hope to be ready to post it in a day or two.

Keep up the good work.
sfreeman1 (author) says: 1 year ago
A giant "Thank you" to everyone who has taken the time and effort to view my first Instructable. I greatly appreciate having been selected as a winner in the "EXTREME! Challenge". I am considering mounting the GoPro camera on the tip of the pencil. That way, I can show the world from "The Pencil Point" of view!
FreeStrange says: 1 year ago
5 star's and a vote. This is a project that I normally wouldn't have looked at, but after reading the first two paragraphs you got me really curious. Well written and well thought out project. Really took me on your journey to build this. Will follow and hope for future projects from you sir!
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to FreeStrange1 year ago
Thanks a lot FreeStrange. I hope to add more Instructables. Odd things come out of my shop at times...like the Model A Ford pictured as my icon here.
kaatryn says: 1 year ago
A first I thought it was just a model with a regular pencit, but wow! I am impressed!
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to kaatryn1 year ago
You found me out! It really is a regular pencil. The bigger secret is that I figured out a way to shrink my wife's truck. Now if I can only figure out how to get to back to full size and save my marriage!

Just kidding. thanks for your kind remark.
DrakerDG says: 1 year ago
Incredible work.

I have really wanted to imitate.

It looks like a pencil Land of the Giants!
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to DrakerDG1 year ago
I like that DrakerDG!
GeekBeam says: 1 year ago
showed this project to a couple of friends, they laughed...tis an interesting project, what brought it back into your mind after all those years?
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to GeekBeam1 year ago

I have many things that play with proportion around my place, like a 24" tall, soft-serve ice-cream cone and another pencil that is 4' long. I have some over-sized coins, some extremely undersized coins and other "odd" stuff.

Seeking a project which I could tie into my business, that old pencil came to mind.

Thanks rymndgeekyguy!
GeekBeam in reply to sfreeman11 year ago
most interesting, I certainly hope you give more instructables in the future, live long and post awesome!
supersoftdrink says: 1 year ago
Neat instructable, and great pics!

I originally clicked on it because it shares the title of an interesting book by John Taylor Gatto, also formerly a public schoolteacher for at least 30 years, who has a lot of intriguing points about education.

Are you going to try to make one that writes now? :)
Michael_oz in reply to supersoftdrink1 year ago
I was thinking it wouldn't be too hard to mount a briquette into the tip, sharpen it up and scribble away...
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to Michael_oz1 year ago
Mounting the briquette would be pretty easy but grasping a 20' pencil that weighs 240 pounds might be a bit tough.
Move the paper, not the pencil ;)
Mienja says: 1 year ago
>>--->sfreeman1 -
Looked up something for you. Not sure it will fit the bill but all you do is Google Graphite Rods
http://www.naccarbon.com/
or http://www.graphitestore.com/

Slap one of those into a wood tube cut from a pole and Voila!
It would be a giant pencil you can actually write with.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to Mienja1 year ago
It would be pretty easy for me to add graphite to this pencil but there is still the problem of writing with a 20' pencil that weighs 240 lbs.

Mienja in reply to sfreeman11 year ago
hehe...yes...also I tried to google for a super giant eraser and found none that would fit a pencil that huge...alas you'll have to make sure you don't make any mistakes ;)
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to Mienja1 year ago
Well, Mienja, that's easy. I nevr mack miscakes!
explosivemaker says: 1 year ago
5 stars and +1 vote

It's sad people think they can win by just adding one word to the title.....At least try to be awesome and put as much in as this project took.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to explosivemaker1 year ago
Thank you very much for the 5 stars and the vote (in the contest) and the vote of confidence.
retrosurfer says: 1 year ago
you should use this as a sign for your tutoring business. that way the kids would see it every time they came to be tutored.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to retrosurfer1 year ago
One of my students suggested today that I should install it in the yard and put benches alongside of it so kids could sit on the benches and use the pencil for a table to do their work with me. I love it when my kids start thinking "outside the (pencil) box".
hkrahlin says: 1 year ago
Wonderful. I woudl have made it a red editor's pencil - but that says something about my character. Thinking I should make a red editor and a blue proofer pencil in honor of my Father. Thank you so much for posting this.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to hkrahlin1 year ago
I'm glad you've gotten some inspiration from this pencil. I'd love to see your red and blue ones when you finish them. Good luck.
dakellymon says: 1 year ago
That is very cool, well done.
ekardell says: 1 year ago
Insanely great.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to ekardell1 year ago
Thanks!
depotdevoid says: 1 year ago
That's an awesomely oversize pencil!
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to depotdevoid1 year ago
Thanks depotdevoid!
oilitright says: 1 year ago
You can tell it is a brand new pencil; no one has chewed on it yet!
cammers says: 1 year ago
Great work. I love it.
Thanks for sharing.
sfreeman1 (author) in reply to cammers1 year ago
Thanks cammers. I appreciate each of the kind comments the project has received. I'm hoping they are translating into votes for the contest so my students can gain some new tools for our classes.
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