Blackboards are very popular as part of interior décor as well as in the classroom. These functional and practical pieces can be a great addition to any room, and they come in all shapes and sizes. You can even get blackboards in frames that suit your existing décor. Although these items already seem fairly adaptable to any style you might already have in your home, there is another element that make them even more malleable to suite any space. This is the chalk that is normally used to write on blackboards.
Chalk has been used from very early on and natural chalk rock was used to create some of the earliest cave drawings that we know of. However, today we do not use as much natural chalk to write with, but rather chalk sticks that are made from calcium sulphate in its dehydrate form, gympsum. Chalk sticks come in difference sizes, but the standard size is about 3.15 inches long and 0.35 inches in diameter. This cylinder shape has proven the easiest type of chalk to write with on a board. This shape was first created so that the chalk would be easier to handle for artists, however today it is a convenient shape as it is similar to a pen or pencil that your hand is more familiar with handling. When you are using the chalk you press it against the surface of the blackboard and the particles of the chalk will crumble and stick to the surface that you are writing on.
Although chalk and drawings have been used to convey messages since the beginning of time, the use of blackboards was not introduced to the classroom until the 19th century, when classes grew to a significant size. In these classrooms, many of the children had their own chalkboards as this was cheaper than paper to write on, and the element of reusability was vital, especially to those students who could barely afford to be in school in the first place.
If you have a blackboard in your home you might want to use different coloured chalk to write or draw with. This chalk is made by mixing calcium carbonate with pigments (these are dry, naturally coloured materials). These are blended together while still dry. The manufacturers then add water to the mixture, and it is then shaped into cylinders and put in an oven for four days at 85 C°. The chalk is then packed up and you can often by packs that include a whole range of different colours. You can then start writing up colourful messages for your family. When you want to change the message on the blackboard or if you have made a minor mistake, it is easy to wipe of the chalk with a wet cloth, a moist sponge or a special blackboard eraser. This will easily get rid of any chalk and once the blackboard is dry you can start writing and drawing on it again.