I have been wanting to make pencil toppers forever, but I’m not the crafty type anymore. I don’t really have enough time (three kids), and I always glue my fingers together. However, I really want to differentiate my “borrowed” pencils because they are always walking off. I do not mind giving out pencils, and I do so freely. But, I hate when I run out. So, after reading @reminoodle’s Made4Math last week I knew I had to try to make the crochet flower pencil toppers. And, after tweeting about missing pencils all week I also decided to make a “Pencil Check Out” sheet (included below).
I followed the pattern she linked to, but my flower only had three petals. I frantically tweeted @reminoodle (several times) but she was off having a life that day and didn’t get back to me right away. Since I’m not the patient sort, I just kept crocheting and crocheting until I had what looked more like a flower. When the wonderful @reminoodle came back to Twitter she explained that she had trouble with the pattern as well and also had three petal flowers. This made me feel MUCH better!
When @reminoodle asked me if I wanted her to write up her pattern, of course I said, “YES, please!” However, that also got me thinking. My flowers were going pretty well by now, maybe I should write a pattern too. @reminoodle said that I could write it, but I told her that we BOTH needed to write it up. I have never written a pattern before so mine may be confusing. AND they will both be different because her’s have four petals and mine have five. Plus, I just love “jinx” tweets and blogs!
I used brightly colored, variegated yarn because that is just who I am. The flowers actually look better if you do them each in a different solid color, but I can never resist multi-colored yarn. I used mechanical pencils because that is what I have my students use in class. And, there is nothing worse than a student that borrows a pencil AFTER class begins and THEN has to sharpen it because of course only the broken pencils are left in the pencil bin. Mechanical pencils also have the clip on the side that helps hold the flower in place. I did put a dab of tacky glue on them too just to make them more permanent.
I also made a Pencil Check Out sheet. It will hopefully encourage students to check out a pencil BEFORE class (note smiley face), instead of AFTER class begins (note sad face). If I have a frequent borrower, I will now have a record and can start a conversation with the student and their advisor, or maybe even contact the parents in extreme cases.
Below is my pattern of the five petal flower and here is @reminoodles four petal flower.
Crochet Flower Pencil Topper
- Ch 7
- 6 sc in 2nd chain from hook.
- [Turn, ch1, 6 sc], repeat 3 times, making 3 rows.
- Turn, ch 1, 2 sc in each sc.
- Turn, ch 3, 2 dc in next stitch, ch 3, sl st in same st,
- [Sl st in next st, ch 3, 2 dc in next stitch, ch 3, sl st in same st] repeat 4 times until you have 5 petals total.
- Cut off, leaving about 5” of thread to stitch it together.
- Using a crochet needle or darning needle, stitch the two side together and tie off to finish.
- Attach to pencil and secure using Tacky glue or hot glue.
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LOOKS GREAT! I LOVE the multi-colored flowers…they remind me of sprayed carnations or roses…or something like this: http://marvelousfacts.blogspot.com/2010/06/multi-colored-flowers-colored-rose.html
I need to get started on my pattern…don’t worry, I won’t copy. 😉 I’m going to come up with something else for #made4math as well, so my post will probably show up a bit later today.
Also, I love that you used mechanical pencils… 🙂
Those are beautiful! I’m going to pass your pattern on to my mom and see if she can make them for me! Thank you for sharing!
Yes. The side clips really hold the flower on!
For exchanging pencils.. I usually just make them exchange something of theirs with my pencil.. like a shoe.. or a necklace.. something they’ll need for the rest of the day..
I tried that and it worked well, but it takes up my time during class. With the sign-up sheet, I’m am out of the loop. They sign up, get a pencil, and go back to their seat wo even having to interact with me.
Hmmm. A check out sheet. Why didn’t I think of that.
I wouldn’t have by myself (brainstorming session in Twitter).
This is such a great idea, especially the checkout sheet, even for college classes. I think I’ll give it a try.
Love the checkout sheet. Thanks for sharing it! I’m not as creative as you are, Julie. I mark my pencils with a “flag” of neon green or pink duct tape (just below the eraser – folded onto itself to resemble a flag). It’s difficult to remove, but easy to spot walking out the door!
Just downloaded your pencil sign out sheet for my student supply center. 🙂
Hello i speak math,
It is awesome article and followers you made are really beautiful.
thanks for sharing.
The checkout sheet that you made is really amazing, thanks for the information.
This was aa lovely blog post