Dixon Ticonderoga Company Named NASSTRAC Shipper of the Year

Dixon Ticonderoga Company had the honor of being named Shipper of the Year for 2014 by the National Shippers Strategic Transportation (NASSTRAC). This is a great honor to all of us at Dixon Ticonderoga Company, and especially to me, with a background in logistics.

I want to begin by recognizing all of our employees at our Macon, GA warehouse for all the hard work that they put in. The work that goes into receiving the title of Shipper of the Year is truly a team effort. I also should distinguish our core carriers whom we have a close relationship with and are a large reason for our success.

With their help, we were able to save almost over $2.0 million in 2013. The largest impact of this is that we can increase our Community Service support while also passing on consumer savings to our loyal customers. Since 2009, we have also donated almost $5 million to the Kids In Need Foundation in pencils alone and we have been a proud supporter of Kids in Need for over 15 years.

Thank you to everyone who has made this great honor possible for us, and who has in turn helped us to give back.

Introducing the NEW Ticonderoga Shaped Eraser

Hello! My name’s Nancy and I’m with the marketing department at Dixon Ticonderoga Company. Tim asked me to write a guest post for the blog, and I decided to write it on my new favorite product, Ticonderoga shaped erasers, in honor of Rubber Eraser Day on April 15th.

Did you know that tax day is also Rubber Eraser Day? Since you can’t “erase” doing your taxes, we have come out with a new Ticonderoga Pencil Shaped eraser. These are the perfect erasers for everything from tax season to back-to-school season.

They look just like our Ticonderoga pencils, right down to the green and yellow ferrules. Best of all, they’re the same great quality that you have come to expect from the Ticonderoga name.

Our Ticonderoga Erasers are the World’s Best Erasers. They do all the things that an eraser should do, the only difference is we do it better than any other eraser. They erase mistakes completely without tearing through the paper to leave a clear, smudge free writing surface.

Click here to learn more about our Ticonderoga Shaped Erasers now. After all, everyone makes mistakes!

38953 Ticonderoga Pencil Shaped Eraser

The Importance of Teachers

Education is the key to success in life, and teachers make a lasting impact in the lives of their students.

-Solomon Ortiz

 

Our teachers are our nation’s greatest resource. We entrust them not only with our children’s livelihoods but also our children’s futures. America’s future success depends on our children’s ability to connect with their teachers and truly learn something new and useful each and every day.

One of my goals is always to make teachers’ lives as easy as possible. Whether it is with my own child’s teachers or those of others’, I believe that it is important to support and encourage teachers. If we do not give our teachers the assistance they require, how can we expect those teachers to be able to support our children the way our children require?

One of the ways that we help teachers at Dixon is through free teacher lesson plans. Teachers can visit our website and download lessons to go along with nearly any curriculum, whether you students are studying math or reading. All of our lesson plans are accredited and adhere to state standards.

When we support our nation’s teachers, we also support our nation’s youth. It is imperative that we focus on doing all we can for teachers that they may be better prepared to do all they can for our children.

If you’re interested in checking out our free teacher lesson plans, please click here.

Handwriting Statistics

Twenty years from now, I see my daughter, Gabriella, being happy and successful in her life’s pursuits; I consider it my duty to prepare her as much as possible for whatever future she may choose. As I watched her practicing writing recently, I decided to research the importance of handwriting. Many schools are considering removing this practice from their curriculums; however, I came across some staggering statistics that made me disagree with this. Feel free to view a few of them below, and then decide if you think handwriting should be taught in schools.

Click here to print off some free handwriting worksheets now.

 

handwriting statistics 2

Education Makes Dreams Come True

Can dreams come true? This week, I had the opportunity to find out for myself.

As Vice President of Administration & Human Resources at Dixon Ticonderoga Company I was flattered  yet a bit apprehensive when Dixon’s Chief Executive Officer, Tim Gomez, asked me to write a guest post. I wasn’t quite sure I would be able to describe my feelings about an experience that had touched my heart. However, I was surprised to see that as soon as I started typing I was able to relive those moments vividly.

Earlier this week, Akerman LLP, a leading law firm, and Dixon Ticonderoga Company partnered to donate backpacks filled with high-quality school supplies to West Riviera Elementary School in West Palm Beach, Fla. I had the privilege to stand with Akerman staff to distribute 736 backpacks in one day! I was touched by all the high fives and tight hugs I received from the young children. It was amazing to hear the shouts of excitement from the students when they saw their very own backpack stuffed with their favorite packs of Ticonderoga Pencils and products.

While I was on the road driving back up to Orlando from West Palm, all I could think about was the little girl that tapped me on my leg and stated with a soft voice, “Thank you, ma’am. I really appreciate it”.

Thank you, Akerman. Your generosity touched the lives of many young children. Your team deserves all the credit.

If you or your company is interested in being a part of a day of giving backpacks to students and making dreams come true, please send an email to teacherrock@dixonusa.com.

—     Lillian Gonzalez

Happy Holidays

Are you in the holiday spirit?  I am.  It’s hard not to be, surrounded as I am with Dixon and Prang elves working hard to fill our holiday orders.  The Dixon USA offices are brimming with holiday cheer.  Colors surround us daily, though red and green seem to dominate our offices this time of year!

The holidays, as you know, are all about giving.  Dixon employees are some of the most generous and giving people I know.  There is pure joy on their faces when they see the Kids In Need Foundation truck back up to deliver free school supplies from our company.  Pallets of pencils, chalk, paint and art markers are sometimes delivered by multiple tractor trailers.  The Kids in Need Foundation organizes this task, and we are so grateful to them.

I urge you to join us in giving to area classrooms.  Feel the joy we feel throughout the year in our profound dedication to youth and education.  It will feel great – I promise!

Exercising Synergy

Energy and Synergy are two of my favorite words, but maybe Synergy is my most favorite.  Energy can be supplied by an individual, but it takes more than one person or company to create true synergy.

I hosted a gathering of energetic community and business leaders from our region recently to discuss new and better ways to give back to the community.  With their input and creativity, Dixon’s commitment to community and education programs was inspired to a whole new level.  I’ve been pondering the synergy, energy and success of that meeting and have come away with the conclusion that we are definitely on the right track.

For example, Dixon’s new school backpack program received resounding endorsements around the table.  It’s a new concept, but one that is catching on fast.  Instead of appealing to stores and individuals to invest countless hours to donate supplies, Dixon assembles appropriate backpack supplies for corporate sponsorship.  We even include the backpacks!  These sturdy backpacks are pre-assembled with the most popular and teacher-tested supplies on the market (Dixon, Prang and Lyra, of course).  Corporations can have the personalized corporate-branded backpacks delivered directly to the intended schools.  We’re also happy to set up a presentation event complete with photographer to showcase the corporation’s commitment to education excellence.

Later on,   we cheered on the Orlando Magic and relaxed after a hard day’s work. Check out the pictures from our fun and productive event below.

TimB2BEvent

Tim3B2BEvent

Tim

Personalizing Pencils For Any Occassion

How would you like to get a pencil this holiday season that was customized just for you? What would you want yours to say? Mine would definitely say “Stay Sharp like a Ticonderoga #2 Pencil”.   Dixon Ticonderoga Company is the world’s largest manufacturer of customized pencils, pens, markers, industrial, and arts and crafts products.

Large and small companies alike utilize our customizable pencils and other writing instruments because they know that perception is everything and our high quality products speak volumes about their brand. However, it’s not just companies like restaurants, hotels, and banks that can benefit from personalized pencils; many parents and teachers find that personalized pencils and crayons make great gifts.

I read with amusement an online message board that appealed to others to help with a personalized pencil imprinting.  A Mom was looking for advice on what saying to put on the side of some pencils she was gifting to her son’s teacher.  Obvious suggestions were the teacher’s name, the name of the school… you get the idea.  But there were some better ideas.

“Look sharp!”  “Don’t write outside the line!” “Ouch! Don’t chew on me!” were eye-catching.  But probably the most fun imprinting on a classroom pencil read “Stolen from my teacher!”  I’m guessing he or she got her pencils returned!

Personalized pencils are great gifts and stocking stuffers.  For more information regarding our Promotional Products, please visit http://www.dixonpromo.com.

 

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

As a Dad, I’m always looking for fun and easy activities to do with my family.  We try to limit the amount of time my daughter gets to spend on technology in my house, and increase the amount of time she spends on creative tasks. Another Dixon Dad, Bruce Miller, showed me this easy and colorful craft perfect for the Thanksgiving holiday, and I asked him to make this video.  You can see how quick and easy it is, using our precise and vibrant Prang Art Markers and Prang glue, of course.

Bruce turns a plain ole’ coffee filter into a beautiful Thanksgiving card, poster, placemat – or in my family, refrigerator art.  Another suggestion is to stick it into the middle of a fall flower arrangement for the table centerpiece.  My daughter is making them to mark the place settings at our Thanksgiving table.  I’m guessing she places herself smack dab in the middle between her doting grandparents.

Simple, affordable, easy and remarkable – Dixon, Prang and Lyra products all provide young artists with the tools they need to create.

If you are looking for something for the kids to keep the kids busy while you cook, this craft will give you one more thing to be thankful for.  Why not take a few minutes and join them?  Making crafts is about making memories as well.

 

 

Keyboards Shouldn’t Replace Pencils

This week, I submitted a guest column to the Orlando Sentinel regarding the benefits of traditional pencil-to-paper learning. The ‘My Word’ column below was published on November 20.

A recent Washington Post article looked at the scramble by American educators to teach typing skills to children as young as 7. Under new national Common Core academic standards, third-grade students will be tested on computers starting next school year.

What does that mean for traditional pencil-and-paper learning? There’s a strong case to be made for keeping it around. Clearly, my company, Dixon Ticonderoga Company, benefits from the continued use of pencils in schools, but independent research shows pencil-and-paper learning is superior to keyboards in certain circumstances.

A 2009 study at the University of Washington led by Virginia Berninger found children write longer essays, faster and with more complete sentences, if they write them by hand.

In 2010, researchers at Indiana University published findings in a study on handwriting that used magnetic resonance imaging to chart brain function. The study found that children who wrote letters by hand improved their composition and expression skills, and the practice aided fine motor-skill development.

But there is an even more fundamental benefit to pencil-and-paper learning: affordable access to learning tools.

Children from all socioeconomic levels deserve not only the chance to learn but also to express what they’ve learned. Focusing early education on typing detracts from teaching writing skills, and that can put some children at a disadvantage.

Even as the price of technology drops, many children in poorer communities still do not have computers, laptops or tablets at home. Pencil and paper can provide the affordable magic that opens a child’s world to learning.

That is one of the reasons Dixon Ticonderoga Co. has enjoyed a 15-year relationship with the Kids In Need Foundation. In the past four years, Dixon has donated more than $4.6 million in products to KINF, which makes them available to students in need.

Even the most hard-core traditionalist must concede that those in the next generation won’t be able to function without knowing their way around a keyboard. Indeed, keyboards enhance the learning experience as another enabling tool.

That being said, keyboards should never replace pencil and paper. Too much — literature, art, music, math and science — depends on keeping them around.