A couple of weeks ago I spent some quality time with my laminator. I had purchased a Kumon book a while back thinking it would be good for some of my people working on learning their numbers. And I was right, it is. I really like some of the Kumon stuff. It's on good, heavy paper, the graphics are appealing, and they do some good incremental review that isn't found in regular math texts. All of this good stuff comes with a price and I needed four of them. Plus, my crew needed even more repetition than doing a page just once would give. The little girls tear through workbooks like they are candy, sometimes with about as much thought. H. and K. could use some significant repetition. I liked the book, but didn't want to keep buying more and more copies of it.
Enter the laminator. I took the book apart and laminated each page, then hole punched them and put them in a binder. (Thus giving me the double satisfaction of using the laminator and putting things in binders. Bliss.)
This is all great, but you need to be able to write on the laminated sheets and then remove the writing in order to be able to reuse them again. Thus enters my homeschooling tip for the day where you can benefit from my rather expensive trial and error investigation. First, dry erase markers stains lamination. Don't use them. Having failed with dry erase markers, I then switched to erasable crayons. This does work, but it really depends on the brand. Crayola worked well, but they do eventually break (or get mixed in with the regular crayons) so need to be replaced. The next time I bought a different brand (Alex, I think) which did not work at all. At. All. complete waste of money. Finally, I friend suggested I try wet erase markers. I don't know why I didn't think of this in the first place. I've used these markers on large laminated maps for years. Sometimes my brain just doesn't make the connections. I'm happy to report that the Vis-A-Vis wet erase markers work great. They are easy for the children to use, they don't smudge, and they erase completely with no staining.
Everyone has been happily doing these pages over and over again, which makes me happy. I love my laminator.