First I just attached the sharpener to my desk and used it myself for about a week. I had no problem operating it other than the clamp is not as secure as I would like it to be. I think it would be better if the metal arm attached to the clamp went entirely through both sides of the sharpener rather than just stopping somewhere in the middle. Also, the directions leave something to be desired. It was after a reader's comments about the videos posted below that I realized we weren't even using the thing correctly. So those are my two cons - needs a better clamp, and definitely needs better instructions. As for pros, it is waaaaaay better than the standard wall-mounted pencil sharpener and a lot quieter than the electric one. And it makes a perfect point every time.
It wasn't too long before the kids noticed the sharpener and began to
So first I had him try it without the clamp and it was a dud. He got a good hold on the sharpener but he couldn't get a point on the pencil. So next we tried it again with the sharpener clamped to the table.
Apparently there was no luck to be had that day because even after he did everything correctly, the tip broke off the pencil as he pulled it out of the sharpener. But that can happen with any sharpener and was probably just a dud pencil or something. He has been pretty successful with this sharpener now that he has had more practice.
All in all, I give this sharpener a 7 out of 10. I had to show small groups of kids (2 or 3 at a time) how to use the sharpener and there are a few students who just never got the knack of it. But most students did well and use it on a regular basis.
I used the clamp to attach the sharpener to my guided reading table since that seemed to be a prime time for pencils to loose their points. I also have to hide the sharpener in my desk when I have a substitute teacher because on more than one occasion, a sub has lost their cool over not being able to figure it out :P.