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50 shades of graphite November 1, 2012

Posted by mareserinitatis in education, teaching.
Tags: , , ,

This seems like an odd thing to ponder, but it makes sense to my currently sleep-deprived brain: does anyone know how people tend to react to ink color?  I know a lot of my students get upset when they see red ink.  I tend to use gel pens, however, and use a lot of pink and orange in particular for grading.  The funny thing is, they almost seem to think this is neat or cute.  (This is somewhat surprising as most of my students are male: I would’ve expected them to roll their eyes at me for being stereotypically female because I use a pink pen…)  Lime green is another popular color.

Honestly, though, it seems like they react far more positively if I stay away from using the dreaded red pen.  They’re also more likely to read my feedback.  Last year, they requested me to use pink in particular when one student chuckled about his comments being written in that color.  I told them there were other possibilities, too.  No, they wanted pink.

Has anyone else observed this?

And yes, I’m aware the graphite is used in pencils and not pens.  I just couldn’t come up with a more catchy title.



1. zenandjuniorhigh - November 1, 2012

Neons are back as a fad. A lot of my middle schoolers are wearing bright green, pink, yellow and other bright colors.


2. Zane - November 2, 2012

Yes, I avoid red ink – some people take it (too) personally. So, I usually mark in green and ask the person to mark in some contrasting color after they’ve made the change.


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