Background: I am a fourth year math graduate student in the US.

Perhaps you will think this question silly, but I intend for it to be a serious question.

In teaching courses such as calculus and analysis, I frequently find myself wanting to use colored chalk. Unfortunately, all the colored chalk I can get seems to be of exceptionally poor quality. It tends to be very light and brittle, and quite difficult to erase. Too be honest, it's nearly unusable. (I suspect it's been designed for children, rather than teachers.)

Many of the topologists at my university have a much better type of colored chalk, but none of them seem to know where to buy more of it. I'm aware that Hagoromo chalk exists, but I'm looking for something that's more easily obtainable. I don't need it to be the best chalk in the world, just something useable would be great.

That being said, can anyone recommend a brand that is both easily obtainable and reasonably useable? Links to online retailers are wonderful, but any guidance whatsoever is much appreciated.

  • $\begingroup$ Do you have white chalk that satisfies you? If so, did you check if the producer of it also has colored chalk? $\endgroup$
    – quid
    Dec 9 '15 at 9:47
  • $\begingroup$ Have you asked the topologists how they got the chalk? Maybe someone, a secretary perhaps, ordered it for them originally. $\endgroup$
    – Amy B
    Dec 9 '15 at 11:20
  • $\begingroup$ I usually just use the university's white Crayola chalk. It's not particularly outstanding, but it's more than capable enough. Everyone I've asked says that they bought it at an art store in town that stopped carrying it a several years ago. In response, these professors began to ration their remaining supplies :P $\endgroup$ Dec 9 '15 at 17:35
  • $\begingroup$ "Perhaps you will think this question silly"... fret not, there is some amount of precedent for chalk questions: MO 26267 Where to buy premium white chalk in the U.S., like they have at RIMS? $\endgroup$ Dec 9 '15 at 17:56
  • $\begingroup$ Wanting to use colored chalk is decidedly not silly. $\endgroup$
    – Sloan
    Dec 11 '15 at 14:29

What you want is Omega Colored Chalk:

           Colored Chalk
      "This non-toxic, low-dust chalk delivers extra-smooth and easily erasable writing in eight vibrant colors."
I won't include a link, but if you search, you will find many office-supply outlets that carry it in the US, for about $4. Good stocking stuffer!


For a long time, until I transferred to a school with white boards and dry erase markers, I actually used sidewalk chalk like these Colored Sidewalk Chalk

It is cheap, lasts a long time, incredibly durable, and has nice bright colors. Sidewalk chalk also draws really thick lines making your writing more visible from further away. Additionally, many sidewalk chalk packs come with plastic chalk holders that help to keep your hands from getting dusty and to give the chalk pieces a little extra support. I mostly used Crayola brand and I found it no more difficult to erase from the board than any other brand/type of chalk.


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