Product: Scotch Thermal Laminator (TL901C-T)
Price Range: ~$25
Amazon Product Page (Affiliate Link)
Comments: It’s disgusting really, but I don’t know what I would do without my laminator. Back in the day, when my first child was a toddler, I used to love “laminating” things with contact paper. My mom tried to convince me that I needed a thermal laminator, but I thought it seemed unnecessary. I was totally happy with my cheaper contact paper solution.
I should have known that moms are always right. Eventually she just bought me one for my birthday. At first I thought I wouldn’t use it much. After all, it’s nearly 12 WHOLE CENTS for a thermal laminating pouch. However, once I started using her laminator, I never looked back. Except for when I need to laminate something bigger than a standard sheet of paper (see here or here), my contact paper days are over.
I laminate things all the time when homeschooling my kids. I laminate all the Montessori-inspired cards that I make, as well as lots of other educational printables (both my own free printables as well as ones I find on other blogs or off of Teachers Pay Teachers). Not only does it make them more durable for my current student, but I plan to use a lot of these materials with my younger kids as well, and I don’t want to have to make them again. I keep them all in a shoebox or in labeled manila envelopes in my closet. (At some point, I’m going to need to have a better filing system.)
I also use my laminator all the time for our history pockets. I love the hands on activities, but if my son is going to work so hard on something we’re going to save, I want to make sure it lasts.
I’ve also used my laminator to make my kids’ checklists to help them work through activities on their own. For example, when my son used to go to school, he would have lists reminding him of all the things he needed to do in the morning. He got to use a dry erase marker and I didn’t have to yell at him to put on his shoes every. single. day. Win-win. (Yes, I know I’m obviously a nerd.)
This is not homeschool related, but we’ve also used our laminator to save certain pieces of art the kids make, for homemade Christmas ornaments, and to make gifts for grandparents. I forget where I read this, but a good one is to trace your child’s hand onto skin colored construction paper, then write, “I’ll hold your spot for you” to make a personalized bookmark.
I should point out that this post was not sponsored by Scotch brand in any way. I seriously just love my laminator. I’m not partial to Scotch. For all I know, the Amazon Basics one is just as good. Scotch is just the one I got first and I’m a happy customer. As of this writing, it’s also listed as “Amazon’s Choice”, which seems odd when they have a competing product.
I know some people get by without laminators at all. (It seems crazy, I know.) However, if you’re in the dark ages and cutting out pieces of self-adhesive contact paper which you have to measure out and which rolls up onto itself, let me tell you, my friend, it’s not worth it. One of these thermal laminators will change your life.
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- Best Homeschool Supplies