At least twice a week, I find a great comic strip - one that's really funny, that addresses a topic totally up the alley of one of the people I work with, one that I know they'll really dig - and I'll take it to them. I'll smile a little to myself as I hand it over, knowing how much they'll enjoy it. I even mentally prepare myself for all the praise that I know they'll shower on me.

Half the time, they won't even look at it.

"I don't get cartoons," they'll say.

What's the expression? "Same planet, different worlds"?

I love comic strips. I use them in the classroom constantly. I put at least one on any quiz or worksheet I give to students; long tests might have as many as six or seven. I put a comic on any permission slip or letter home (you'd be surprised how many of those actually get read that way). I insert them in my PowerPoints.

This post is about how and where I find comic strips (and a few other things).

Step One - The Proper Mental State

The important thing, when reading comic strips (or anything else, for that matter) is your (well, in this case, my) state of mind. You (okay, me) have to have one idea constantly in the back of you mind - "Oh, that's cool! Is there any way I can use it in the classroom?" This is the same state of mind that most teachers have when visiting a dollar store or GoodWill; I've just expanded it to odd drawings and bad jokes.

Step Two - Bookmarking Websites

Once you have found the website of a comic strip that you like, you should bookmark it so that you can find it again quickly and easily. I visit comic strip websites just about every day, so I've made a folder in my bookmark tab just for comic strips and a few other sites that I visit frequently. (See photo, above.)

Step Three - How To Save a Comic Strip For Later Use

It's actually pretty simple. 

Right-click the image and choose the, "Save image as..." option.

Consideration Four (It's not really a step.) - Is It Legal?

I have no idea.

My understanding of copyright law (which is hazy at best) is that as long as a teacher isn't making any money or depriving the original artist of any revenue, it is kosher for him or her to use this sort of material in a classroom setting. If you are really worried about the legality of this, consult your school's Librarian.

Okay - So What Comic Strips Do I Read?

In no particular order, here are the websites I visit at least two or three times per week: