Is a Color Printer Worth Investing for Classroom Use?

A color printer prints anything with colors and makes printed materials more interesting to read. But is a color printer worth investing for classroom use?

While not every office has a lot of colored printing to do, it’s different when it comes to classroom use. Colored prints in learning materials strongly capture attention better and enhance the experience. Colors by nature attract the eye and increase memory retention than black and white texts.

A color printer cartridge

Benefits of Color Printing

As an educator, you constantly think of ways to innovate your teaching methods and make your materials exciting as they can be. You invent ideas to incite interaction among students and that includes using colors to your signs and visual aids so they look more appealing.  One way to achieve that is through the use of color printers.

Color printers produce lively visual materials that increase attention. Since they bring colors, it makes texts livelier and more memorable. Children appreciate colors, thus increasing readership.

One of the reasons why teachers want to add colors to their lesson materials is to engage students through better recognition. An increase in comprehension also increases memory recall.

Thanks to technology, teachers can now do many more tasks than just producing a printed page.

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Advantages and Disadvantages of Color Printers

Advantages

Color printers are not costly. Color laser printers, for instance, have the capacity to print in high volume yet are cheaper to use making them suitable for basic classroom printing jobs. Although laser toner cartridges can be costly, they still remain cheaper in the long term because of their capacity to print more amount of pages.

Disadvantages

A color printer has a slow print speed, and it needs to print regularly to keep the nozzle from being blocked. It also has high-quality paper requirements so if you’re trying to save money or you don’t have enough budget for expensive papers, it will most likely produce poor quality printouts. Lastly, you must have it checked regularly to avoid issues.

How Do Color Printers Work?

colored printer

Color printers work in the same way as monochrome printers (black and white) except that they do the extra work of combining colors. Typically, they use four colored inks: cyan (blue), magenta (red), yellow, and black. The outcome of these blends and mixtures generates a full spectrum of beautiful colors.

When you send a document to the color printer, it turns that material into a bitmap (tiny points that blend together to form a unified image). In a “black-only” printer, each pixel is either empty (white) or full (black). For color images, the printer finds the right blend of colors from its different colored toner to come up with the color you’re looking for.

The printer then creates a still electric charge on a special roller, called the imaging drum. The static charge will let the toner stick to the roller. But just before the toner is applied, the printer will print the bitmap image on the roller using a laser.

The special imaging drum roller (known as a belt in modern laser printers) is made from a material that conducts electricity when hit by light, so the laser disregards the static charge on the parts of the roller it imprints. Here, the rest of the roller remains charged—and sticky.

The roller then rolls over the toner tank in the printer while the sticky parts of the roller pick up the toner. As soon as the roller rolls over a paper sheet, the toner now transfers to the sheet.

For a color printer, the roller must apply each color toner separately. Since most color laser printers use four-color toners (cyan, magenta, yellow, and black), they often require the use of multiple rollers to accelerate the process one after another.

How to Look for a Good Color Printer

Here are four questions you should answer before finding the best color printer:

What do you plan to print?

  • If you’re a teacher whose methods of teaching are more on the visual side, you need an inkjet printer for the best colors in your pictures and illustrations. For higher printing volume without the need for color depth, go for the color laser printer.

What is your printing budget?

  • How often will you be printing? It all depends on how much you print because that will determine how often you will be refilling ink (for inkjets) and how often you’ll be replacing cartridges (for lasers). Cartridges are a crucial part of the printer, and honestly the most expensive one. So, opt to buy a printer that has a longer cartridge life.

How many users will be using the printer?

  • There is a recommended number of people for a printer. If you exceed that number, the internal parts of the printer will wear out faster. For the classroom setting, look for a color printer model with a bigger number capacity. I would suggest a laser printer.

Is a Color Printer Worth Investing for Classroom Use?

teacher on lecture with a student raising hand

Certainly.

The outcome in the classroom is every teacher’s priority. Since creativity is essential to add vitality to learning activities, a color printer is one way to keep your students interested in their work.

Color printing is an extremely affordable approach that brings a positive impact on the quality of education. In fact, it’s not only interesting but an effective strategy in your lesson planning.

Here are lively ways a teacher can use color in classwork:

  • A color-coding system helps organize things inside the classroom.
  • Printing photos, charts, graphs, and diagrams with color provides vitality
  • Posters and other graphics that show colors also encourage interaction.
  • Using colored paper for school activities instead of the traditional black and white adds fun.

Given that students respond positively to the use, effect, and influence of color in classroom materials, it gives an exciting opportunity for teachers to make the most of their teaching while getting closer to their goals.

To Sum it Up

The next question you may be asking is: What Printer is Best for Classroom Use? Inkjet or Laser? I explained the answer in one of my posts. Click here.

If you need to print each of your students some colored materials every week, get a laser printer. But if you require professional-quality photos, an inkjet printer is the best choice.

However, if you only require basic classroom printing without the necessity of color depth, we recommend color laser printers. They use laser toner that does not dry up allowing you to print more pages. Inkjets use ink.

Do you have any helpful advice about color printing in the classroom? Many teachers will benefit from that. Share them with us in the comments.

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